On Friday it was reported by police that four Hofstra University basketball players were arrested late Thursday on charges of burglary. The players charged are Kentrell Washington, age 18, of Las Vegas, Jimmy Hall, age 18, of Brooklyn, Dallas Anglin, age 18, of Montclair, N.J., and Shaquille Stokes, age 20, of Manhattan.
According to police the thefts happened between the dates of Oct. 4th and Nov. 5th. The players charged are alleged to have targeted six unlocked dorm rooms. However, Nassau County Detective Lt. Raymond Cote believes that there other unreported burglaries that began as far back as the beginning of the semester.
The items that were reported to have been stolen include: several laptops, iPad’s, more than one iPod Touch, headphones, cellphones, and cash. Detective Cote says that since the players’ arrest late Thursday several of the stolen electronics were found for sale on Craigslist. At least $10,000 of electronics has been recovered.
The team’s coach, Mo Cassara, also reported that he had items stolen in May which included cash, credit cards and computer equipment. However, according to Hofsta this was before any of the players were at the school.
Pending the outcome of the case all four players have been suspended from not only the team, but also classes, residence halls and the use of other student facilities.
The Associated Press puts the charges as follows: “Stokes was charged with five counts of second-degree burglary. Washington was charged with two counts of second-degree burglary. Hall was charged with four counts of second degree burglary. Anglin was charged with one count of second-degree burglary and one count of tampering with physical evidence.”
Each player pleaded not guilty at their arraignment Friday at the First District Court in Hempstead, N.Y., and was released after setting bail. None had any prior arrests on their record.
When it comes to how the arrests of these players will impact Hofstra on the court the numbers say that it could have a negative effect. The Hofstra Basketball team plays in the Colonial Athletic Association and is currently 3-5 after their 73 – 47 blowout loss to Southern Methodist University (8-1), who is coached by Larry Brown, on Saturday.
Hall, a freshman who is 6’7, averaged 12.7 PPG making him the team’s second leading scorer, and led the team with 9.4 rebounds a game.
Stokes’, a sophomore, who transferred from the University of Hawaii to Hofstra in June in order to be closer to his grandmother, who was ill, was averaging 10 points in six starts this season which ranked him forth on the team. The N.C.A.A. granted his hardship waiver in November. According to ESPN.com a hardship waiver is “for student-athletes who are compelled to transfer because of financial hardship, or an injury or illness to the student-athlete or a member of their family.”
Washington and Anglin, both freshmen, have seen regular playing time off the bench.
This is not the first time the Hofstra basketball team has had to deal with player issues. The Associated Press reports that “last month, Hofstra suspended two other players, Taran Buie and Jamal Coombs-McDaniel, for violating team rules. The suspensions were for two preseason events and two regular-season games.” Those players should be back on the court soon.
The lawyers for each player have not commented on this matter.
When asked about this after his team’s win Larry Brown was quoted as saying “You hate to see kids have to go through something like this… A lot of us have made mistakes in our lives, but I don’t think at the time you realize the impact it has not only on your life but all the people around you that care about you.”
Asked about the impact on the court Brown said: “You can’t lose four quality players in one day and expect to have success.”
Hofstra’s coach Cassara said “[t]here’s nobody that feels worse about it than me. There’s nobody more disappointed—almost heartbroken, in many ways.”
All four players are on athletic scholarships. It has not yet been determined what will happen to their scholarships.
Information from ESPN.com’s Eamonn Brennan , The Associated Press’ Frank Eltman, Zagsblog.com, and New York Times writer Zach Schonbrun were used in this article