University of Alabama basketball star Brandon Miller brought a teammate the gun used in the fatal shooting of a woman near the campus in January, an investigator testified on Tuesday.
Tuscaloosa Police investigator Brandon Culpepper said Miller, a freshman standout, had brought a gun to Darius Miles, his teammate at the time, according to local news outlets reports.
The testimony came during a preliminary hearing for Miles, 21, and 20-year-old Michael Lynn Davis, who face capital murder charges for the death of 23-year-old Jamea Harris.
Prosecutors say Miles provided the gun to Davis, 20, who allegedly fired it and killed Harris near the university’s Tuscaloosa campus on January 15.
Culpepper told the court that Miles and Davis had gotten into an argument with Harris’ boyfriend while reveling on the Strip, a business district of bars and restaurants that cater to students, on the night of January 14, Tuscaloosa station WTUG reported.
Miller brought Miles’ gun to him that night after Miles asked him to do so in a text message, Culpepper said.
After Miller arrived, Culpepper said Miles and Davis got into the back seat of his Dodge Charger. Miles then allegedly gave the gun to Davis, saying “there’s one in the head,” meaning a round was loaded in the chamber and it was ready to fire.
Culpepper’s testimony marked the first time another Alabama player has been officially connected to the fatal shooting. Investigators reportedly placed another member of the team, Jaden Bradley, at the scene, according to The Washington Post.
Miles was sidelined with an injury when the shooting occurred and was quickly dismissed from the team afterwards.
A university spokeswoman said in January that he also “has been suspended and removed from campus pending the outcome of a student conduct case related to this serious matter.”
Davis is not affiliated with the university.
Judge Joanne Jannik denied bond for Miles on Tuesday and the case will now go to a grand jury, The Tuscaloosa News reported. A decision on whether or not Davis will be granted bond has not been announced.
Miller, the biggest star of the second-ranked Tide team, and who is projected to be a top pick in this year’s NBA draft, has not been criminally charged. It was not clear if he has an attorney, and Newsweek has contacted the University of Alabama, as well as attorneys representing Miles and Davis, for comment.
Alabama coach Nate Oats told reporters on Tuesday that the team has been aware that Miller allegedly brought Miles the gun, but said he is not in “any type of trouble.”
“Can’t control everything anybody does outside of practice,” he said at a news conference.
“Nobody knew that was going to happen. College kids are out. Brandon hasn’t been in any type of trouble, nor is he in any type of trouble in this case. Wrong spot at the wrong time.”
After receiving criticism on social media, Oats later issued a statement clarifying what he called his “unfortunate remarks.”
“We were informed by law enforcement of other student-athletes being in the vicinity, and law enforcement has repeatedly told us that no other student-athletes were suspects,” Oats said. “They were witnesses only. Our understanding is that they have all been fully truthful and cooperative.
“In no way did I intend to downplay the seriousness of this situation or the tragedy of that night. My prayers continue to go out to Jamea Harris’s family.”
Harris’ mother told reporters that she is “very angry” and wants justice for her daughter.
“I have been angry since January 15,” DeCarla Heard said. “I haven’t stopped long enough to grieve because I am so angry. She has a five-year-old son at home still waiting for his mom to come home and she’s not going to come home.”