Ronald Gasser, the man who fatally shot former NFL star Joe McKnight after an argument at a New Orleans intersection, has been released without charge, TMZ is reporting.
According to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Department, the 54-year-old white male was questioned and released “sometime overnight” after authorities believed there was no reason to detain him any longer.
Gasser runs his own telecommunications business. Neighbors said he moved in with father, who died last year, 15 years ago. According to them, he mostly kept to himself.
The source revealed that it had been established that Gasser shot and killed the ex-NFL running back. However, there were “questions about the circumstances surrounding what led up to it.” The investigation is far from closed, and charges could still be filed and the case could go to a district attorney or grand jury.
The 28-year-old running back was shot and killed Thursday around 2:43 p.m. in Terrytown, a suburb of New Orleans. McKnight was standing outside his car when he was shot. He is the second former NFL player to be killed in the New Orleans area this year. Former New Orleans Saints player Will Smith was shot and killed in April over a traffic dispute.
The 34-year-old was shot in the back and side as he exchanged heated words with a Hummer H2 driver who rear-ended his Mercedes G63 in April. His wife was shot in the leg. Cardell Hayes, a former security guard who coincidentally worked for the Saints, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder.
McKnight played three seasons for the New York Jets and did a solitary season with the Kansas City Chiefs. His last season before his death was in the Canadian Football League, where he played two games for the Edmonton Eskimos and three games for the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
The general manager and coach, Chris Jones, expressed his condolences in a statement.
“We send our deepest sympathies to Joe’s family, friends, and all those impacted by this tragedy.”
In 2006, McKnight was deemed the No. 1 running back in the country from John Curtis Christian School in Louisiana. He pitched his tent with the University of Southern California. His catching and running skills were compared to Reggie Bush, a USC star and former flame of Kim Kardashian. Bush was the No. 2 overall pick by New Orleans in the 2006 draft.
Emergency respondents gave McKnight CPR on the street. He was pronounced dead at the scene after succumbing to several gunshot wounds. Ronald Gasser remained at the scene as medical professionals fought to save McKnight’s life. He was seated in his car and had turned his gun over to authorities.
A witness said that he allegedly saw McKnight trying to apologize at the intersection before Gasser yelled at him and shot him several times. According to the man, he then stood over the former NFL player’s inert body, told him “I told you don’t f**k with me,” and shot him again.
Gasser’s family is shocked that the 54-year-old man could kill another person. His daughter, Candice Gasser-Bua, revealed that she was “speechless at the moment.” Gasser’s sister, Sharon Weileman, said she could not believe her brother was capable of such a thing.
“He’s the best guy, the most generous guy. I have no idea what happened. I can’t even talk right now.”
McKnight’s NFL career got off to a wobbly start. At his first rookie camp practice, both calves cramped up, and he dropped a few passes and vomited off the field after failing a battle of nerves. He saw restricted action as a rookie, but he bounced back as a regular-season finale and rushed for 158 yards on 32 carries.
The sheriff said McKnight did not have a weapon on him, and no weapon was found inside or outside his vehicle.
[Featured Image by AP Images]