A former West Virginia University football star killed a man this morning in the parking lot of a Whole Foods in Tampa, Florida, reports Tampa Bay Online.
David Saunders, 37, who also played several years in the the Arena League for the Tampa Bay Storm and other teams, says the victim came at with a huge knife and he opened fire in self-defense, shooting the man in the head.
Here’s what you need to know about Saunders and his harrowing incident:
1. Saunders Trains the Dead Man’s Girlfriend
Saunders is the personal trainer of the girlfriend of the man who died.
Hillsborough County Sheriff’s spokesman Larry McKinnon said that the victim and his girlfriend were sitting in a car in the parking lot of the Whole Foods and were arguing about Saunders. When the victim spotted Saunders in the parking lot, he got out of his car and confronted him with an 8-inch kitchen knife. After a struggle, Saunders shot the man.
2. He Was Not Arrested
The case will be handled by the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office, which will determine if charges will be filed against Saunders or if he acted justifiably in self-defense. The victim’s and his girlfriend’s names have not been released. The knife and the handgun used were recovered from the scene.
3. Saunders ‘Works Well Under Pressure’
Since January 2010, Saunders has worked as a personal trainer in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area in Florida. His LinkedIn page says that he has “assisted client with weight loss management and work out routines to fit their lifestyles.” It also adds that he “works well under pressure,” an assessment that holds new meaning in light of recent events.
4. He Played 9 Years of Pro Ball
Saunders played in the Arena Football League from 2000 to 2008, with stints on several teams including the New Jersey Red Dogs, Tampa Bay Storm and Arizona Rattlers. He finished his career with nearly 5,000 receiving yards.
5. He Was a College Football Superstar
Here he is catching one of his 18 career receiving touchdowns, against Donovan McNabb’s Syracuse team in 1998: