KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A criminal case involving Tennessee football player Jaylen McCollough has been bound over to a grand jury after differing testimonies were given in court Thursday morning.
McCollough, 22, of Georgia is charged with felony aggravated assault after an Oct. 9 incident in which he allegedly assaulted a man who told investigators he entered the wrong apartment, in the wrong building, after having been drinking. The man, Zion Spencer accused McCollough of punching him and causing him to fall down the stairs of a Knoxville apartment complex.
On Thursday, testimony was given by McCollough, his roommate Warren Burrell and Spencer during a preliminary hearing in a Knox County courtroom.
McCollough’s attorney Chloe Akers asked Judge Andrew Jackson VI to dismiss the case based on the grounds of self-defense since Spencer had allegedly unlawfully entered McCollough’s apartment before the alleged assault took place. Spencer said under oath that he did not enter the apartment, setting only one foot on the threshold.
Judge Jackson denied a request to drop the assault charge against McCollough and the case is bound over to a grand jury. A court date has not yet been set.
McCollough claimed in his testimony that he hit Spencer just once on the vestibule or curtilage of the apartment unit; while Spencer claims he was hit by McCollough at the top of the stairs about 30 feet from the apartment’s front door.
Akers asserted that it was after Spencer had threatened to come back inside the apartment that McCollough punched him one time in the face within two feet of the apartment door and not anywhere near the stairs.
McCollough had served as a defensive captain in each of Tennessee’s first four games this season.
After missing games against Alabama UT-Martin, he suited up for games against Kentucky on Oct. 29 and Georgia on Nov. 5. Head coach Josh Heupel said that McCollough was not suspended following the incident.
A University of Tennessee Athletics spokesperson said McCollough’s status for Saturday’s game against Missouri had not changed.
Editor’s Note: This story was updated with additional information following the court proceeding.