Former Florida Gators Football Captain Charged With Murder

By Wire Service Content

A former captain for the University of Florida football team was arrested and charged with murder on Saturday, making him the second player from that team to be accused of murder.

Tony Joiner, whose full name is Earl Antonio Joiner, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder on Saturday in Lake Wales, Florida, for the 2016 killing of Heyzel Obando, according to Fort Myers, Florida Police.

It was not clear Sunday if Joiner has a lawyer. CNN has reached out to the prosecutor’s office and is waiting to hear back.

Police said that officers worked with the Oxygen Television series “Cold Justice” and the Office of the State Attorney to make the arrest. Obando’s body was discovered in an apartment on February 14, 2016, police said.

Joiner, 33, played as a safety for Florida from 2004 to 2007 and was a key part of the 2006 national championship team. In his final season he tallied 64 tackles and was a captain of a team that included Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow and a freshman tight end named Aaron Hernandez.

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Aaron Hernandez is escorted into the courtroom of the Attleboro District Court for his hearing in North Attleboro, Mass., on Aug. 22, 2013. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Hernandez, who played for the Gators from 2007 to 2009 and went on to star for the NFL’s New England Patriots, was convicted of the murder of Odin Lloyd in 2015. He hanged himself in prison in 2017 just days after he was found not guilty of double murder in a separate case.

“Cold Justice” began working with investigators on Obando’s case on May 31 and wrapped up production of the episode on Friday, according to CNN affiliate WFTX.

“It’s a really tragic case to read,” Kelly Siegler, a former prosecutor who hosts “Cold Justice,” told WFTX.

“When you read it, it’s just one of those cases where you think, ‘with just a little bit more effort and concentration and push, it can be cleared.'”

Joiner played his final three seasons at Florida under coach Urban Meyer. Coach Meyer won two national titles at Florida and one at Ohio State even as his players racked up a lengthy list of legal issues. During his six years at the University of Florida, there were 31 arrests of football players, The New York Times wrote in 2013.

Last year, Meyer was suspended for three games without pay in the wake of an investigation into what he did when he learned about spousal abuse allegations against an assistant coach. He resigned after this past season because of health problems.

O.J. Simpson Says ‘Life Is Fine’

Former football star and television personality O.J. Simpson said that he and his family have moved on from the “trial of the century” that saw him cleared of a double murder, but forced to pay millions in a civil suit, according to an Associated Press exclusive.

Simpson told the AP in an interview that “Life is fine.”

He reflected on the upcoming 25th anniversary of the murders of his former wife and her friend, and the subsequent criminal and civil trials, in an AP interview early Monday, June 10.

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O.J. Simpson reacts after learning he was granted parole at Lovelock Correctional Center in Lovelock, Nevada, on July 20, 2017. (Jason Bean/Pool/File Photo via Reuters)

Simpson was found not guilty in a criminal trial over the homicides, but was later found responsible in a civil trial.

He is living healthily and happily in Las Vegas and neither he nor his children want to look back and talk about the June 12, 1994 slaying of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman, he said to the AP.

“We don’t need to go back and relive the worst day of our lives,” he said, adding that it is a subject that “I will never revisit again. My family and I have moved on to what we call the ‘no negative zone.’ We focus on the positives.”

Simpson served nine years in prison, released in 2017, after a conviction of robbery and kidnapping in an unrelated case concerning a dispute over sports memorabilia.

OJ Simpson charged with murder
O.J. Simpson reacts after learning he was granted parole at Lovelock Correctional Center in Lovelock, Nevada, on July 20, 2017. (Jason Bean/Pool/File Photo via Reuters)

He was acquitted by a jury in 1995 of the slayings of Brown and Goldman, but later lost a civil wrongful death suit in 1997. A civil court awarded a $33.5 million judgment against him.

He told the AP that Nevada has been good to him and he is living life outside of the national spotlight.

Reuters contributed to this article.

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