Police Announce Charges for Women's Basketball Player Who Attacked Opponent
Less than 24 hours after the incident, police announced charges against a Memphis Tigers women’s basketball player who appeared to sucker-punch an opponent after a Women’s NIT game March 23.
Bowling Green State University police announced the next day that Memphis senior guard Jamirah Shutes had been charged with assault in the ugly incident following the Tigers’ loss to the host Falcons at the Stroh Center on the Ohio campus.
“Following Thursday’s unwarranted physical incident after the WNIT home game, the Bowling Green State University Police Department has charged a member of the Memphis Women’s Basketball team with assault,” Bowling Green said in a statement, per the Memphis Commercial Appeal.
Curiously, this might not be the end of Shutes’ woes.
“Additionally, BGSU Athletics is conducting its own review,” the university said in its statement. “Violence is never acceptable and our priority remains the health, safety and support of our student-athlete, who is recovering and doing well.”
Bowling Green said the investigation was ongoing and the city prosecutor was involved.
“This is an active investigation in conjunction with the City of Bowling Green Prosecutor, and no further comment is available at this time,” the university said.
Shutes was caught on national television appearing to sucker-punch Bowling Green senior guard Elissa Brett during the handshake line after the game was over.
The Falcons had just beaten Memphis 73-60 in the WNIT’s round of 16.
You can see the “ugly, ugly” incident for yourself below:
BGSU women’s basketball moving on to the final 8 of the WNIT after beating Memphis — but this will steal the headlines unfortunately.
Ugly, ugly scene in the handshake line. A Memphis player punched Elissa Brett. Just brutal. pic.twitter.com/2hptXYBEtj
— Jordan Strack (@JordanStrack) March 24, 2023
When Shutes and Brett, who is from Australia, met in the handshake line, the two exchanged words before Shutes appeared to strike Brett. The Bowling Green guard then fell to the floor near the scorer’s table.
Memphis said in a statement that it was cooperating fully with Bowling Green police, the Commercial Appeal reported.
She should be charged with assault and a hate crime. You know it would happen if it was the other way around.
— Four for Four Philly Sports (@Drew40683012) March 24, 2023
As to what initially triggered the outburst, the Memphis outlet and others said Shutes had been hit in the face in the first quarter after being double-teamed by Brett and Falcons teammate Sophie Dziekan. The latter is alleged to have hit the Memphis guard inadvertently while diving for a loose ball.
Shutes left the game with an injury and didn’t return until the second half.
The fifth-year senior, who was the Tigers’ leading scorer this year, finished the game with 13 points.
Brett, also a senior, finished the game with 15 points.
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