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Paul Alexander Gray. Photo courtesy of ASU.

Originally published: 2013-12-10 14:29:16
Last modified: 2013-12-10 15:48:11

ASU football player charged with assault

Appalachian State University free safety Alex Gray was charged Thursday with assault on a female and has been suspended from all team activities, according to police and the university.

Gray, 20, of Suwanee, Ga., was charged Dec. 5 after an assault on a 21-year-old woman earlier that day that required medical attention, according to police reports. According to the investigation report, Gray was accused of "assaulting his girlfriend with closed fist."

A Boone police officer met Gray and ASU football team liaison Johnny Reese at the Watauga County Magistrate's Office, where Gray was released with a written promise to appear in court Jan. 21, 2014.

Gray, who redshirted last year as a freshman, started all 12 games of the 2013 season at free safety and finished second on the team with 73 tackles.

His biography on the ASU football website characterizes him as "a sure tackler and one of the team's hardest hitters."

Gray has been suspended indefinitely from all team activities, head coach Scott Satterfield said in a statement Tuesday.

"The charges against Alex are very serious, and the behavior outlined in those charges is not something that we condone or tolerate from the young men in our program," Satterfield said. "At this time, we're going to allow the legal process to run its course. When we learn more from legal authorities as they complete that process, we will determine if any additional discipline is appropriate from the athletics department and the football program."

Satterfield is on the road recruiting and said he would not be available for any further comment.

Other members of the ASU football team also have faced criminal charges in the last several years.

Former wide receiver Sean Price was dismissed from the team in October after his arrest on several charges, including felony assault by strangulation, according to police.

Senior linebacker John Rizor was dismissed from the team in July 2012 after being charged with misdemeanor assault in a downtown Boone incident.

ASU Sports Information Director Mike Flynn said that the arrests were not indicative of a trend of violence and criminal behavior within the football program, noting that the vast majority of student-athletes are "terrific representatives of the university on and off the field."

"However, Coach Satterfield would be the first one to say that even one incident within our football program is too many, so he, his assistant coaches and many other members of the athletics department staff work tirelessly to promote positive citizenship among our student-athletes," Flynn said.