UT football Capt Jaylen McCollough arrested for assaulting 'drunk' man who entered wrong apartment

UT football Capt Jaylen McCollough arrested for assaulting 'drunk' man who entered wrong apartment
Jaylen McCollough, a senior starting safety at UT, was held Sunday, October 9, at the Roger D Wilson Detention Facility (Knoxville Police Department)

KNOXVILLE, TENNESSEE: A football player is facing a felony assault charge after he punched a man Sunday afternoon, October 9, at a Fort Sanders apartment complex.

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Jaylen McCollough, a senior starting safety at the University of Tennessee, was held Sunday night at the Roger D Wilson Detention Facility on an aggravated assault charge. He was booked about 9.15 pm, per records. An arrest warrant stated that the Austell, Georgia native punched Zion Spencer, who told police he mistakenly entered an apartment on Grand Avenue while McCollough was inside.

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Spencer said he had been drinking with friends that lived in the complex Sunday afternoon. At some point, he stepped away to get something from his vehicle and when he headed back he entered the wrong building. According to the warrant, the alleged victim went to what he thought was his friend's building on the top floor and knocked on the door but no one answered. The door was unlocked, and he proceeded to open it and went inside. "Mr. Spencer then stated that he immediately realized that he had entered the wrong apartment and apologized before closing the door and began walking back towards the stairs in the common area. Mr. Spencer said that an unknown male pursued him out of the apartment and started getting aggressive," the narrative of the warrant states. However, as he was walking away, he heard footsteps approaching. When he turned around, McCollough punched him in the face. "He fell backwards down the stairs and lost consciousness," per the warrant.

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Upon regaining consciousness, Spencer found another man and a woman who turned out to be McCollough's girlfriend trying to help him to his feet. Police were called to the scene, and responding officers noted that the alleged victim "had blood and swelling on his mouth and had multiple missing and broken teeth." Police also found blood on the stairs leading to the top floor of the building. "Officers attempted to make contact with the occupants of the apartment but were unsuccessful," the warrant stated. Officers eventually found McCollough's girlfriend in the parking lot, and she reportedly called him back to the scene. "Mr. McCollough walked back to the scene with his right hand in bandages and blood showing through the bandage," the warrant said. Officers read him his Miranda rights and he declined to speak. He was subsequently taken into custody.

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According to the Knox County Sheriff's Office, McCollough was released from jail Monday morning, October 10. Tennessee Volunteers coach Josh Heupel was scheduled to speak with the press at noon ET on Monday. McCollough, a four-year starter for the Volunteers, is reportedly tied for fourth on the team with 23 tackles this season. He made seven tackles in Tennessee's 40-13 victory against LSU on Saturday, October 8. The No 6 Volunteers will now host No 3 Alabama at Neyland Stadium on Saturday, October 15.

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Jaylen McCollough #22 of the Tennessee Volunteers lines up against the Purdue Boilermakers during the second half of the TransPerfect Music City Bowl at Nissan Stadium on December 30, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee. Purdue defeats Tennessee 48-45 in overtime.
Jaylen McCollough #22 of the Tennessee Volunteers lines up against the Purdue Boilermakers during the second half of the TransPerfect Music City Bowl at Nissan Stadium on December 30, 2021, in Nashville, Tennessee. Purdue defeats Tennessee 48-45 in overtime. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)

It's worth noting that McCollough is the third Tennessee player to be arrested in the past two months. Offensive lineman Savion Herring was arrested September 11 on a charge of domestic assault. Linebacker William Mohan was arrested August 21 on a charge of felony aggravated domestic assault. Both players were subsequently dismissed from the Tennessee football team.

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