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KNOXVILLE - Whether charges are dropped or not, neither Janzen Jackson nor the other two Tennessee players arrested Thursday will play in Saturday’s game against Mississippi.
According to UT spokesperson Tiffany Carpenter, Jackson, Nu’Keese Richardson and Mike Edwards are not listed on the travel roster for the trip to Oxford, Miss., this afternoon.
UT coach Lane Kiffin refused to announce any sort of punishment or suspension for the three after their arrests for armed robbery, but even without all the information, Kiffin apparently won’t let them face the Rebels.
Richardson remained today in jail on an attempted robbery charge stemming from an incident early Thursday at the Pilot station on Cumberland Avneue.
Richardson, 18, of Florida, remained at the Knox County Detention Facility in lieu of $19,500 bond, Knox County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Martha Dooley said.
Co-defendants Jackson and Edwards, 18, and fellow UT student 22-year-old Marie Montmarquet, have been released on bond or released on their own recognizance.
Vols head coach Lane Kiffin has said the players’ status is on hold while he reviews the alleged incident.
The students are to appear Nov. 20 in Knox County General Sessions Court.
According to KPD spokesman Darrell DeBusk, the incident began at 1:43 a.m. at the Pilot station, 2218 Cumberland Ave., when officers were alerted to an armed robbery in progress.
When officers arrived, they found Cory B. Zickefoose, 20, Benjamin J. Everett, 19, and Corey M. Smith, 18, claiming to have been accosted by two men wearing black hooded sweatshirts.
The trio told officers they were sitting in a 1998 Hyundai Elantra at the convenience store while a friend was inside the business. As they waited for their friend, a man opened the driver’s door, brandished a handgun and stated, “Give me everything you have,” DeBusk said.
A second man then opened the passenger door of the Hyundai and reiterated to the trio, “Give us everything you’ve got,” DeBusk said.
The suspects then got into a 2010 Toyota Prius, which drove away from the scene, DeBusk said. The Prius was stopped a short time later by officers on Neyland Drive after it had been seen near Gibbs Halls.
Police found Edwards, Richardson and Jackson in the car, which was driven by Montmarquet, DeBusk said. UT spokeswoman Karen Collins confirmed that Montmarquet is a student at the university. She is from Mount Juliet, Tenn., according to police.
A search of the Prius revealed an air-powered pellet pistol under the rear seat. Two black hooded sweatshirts were seen in plain view in the backseat, DeBusk said.
The suspects were taken to the Pilot station, where the three victims identified Edwards and Richardson as the two men who demanded their wallets.
All three men were charged with attempted aggravated robbery.
In the glove box of the Prius police found a marijuana grinder, a device to break chunks of compressed marijuana into loose particles so that it can be more easily smoked. Police also found a clear plastic bag of suspected marijuana in Montmarquet’s jacket pocket, DeBusk said.
Montmarquet told police the grinder and marijuana found in her jacket belonged to her, DeBusk said. Along with three counts of attempted aggravated robbery, she also was charged with simple drug possession and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Both Richardson and Jackson were coming off a week in which they faced discipline from Kiffin, the former for missing a practice and the latter for a violation of team rules.
Jackson’s bond had initially been set at $15,000, but he was released on his own recognizance Thursday afternoon, according to attorney Don Bosch.
“Mr. Jackson vehemently asserts his innocence and hopes to be able to demonstrate that in the next 24 to 48 hours,” Bosch said.
Montmarquet’s attorney, Gregory P. Isaacs, said his client is a student in good standing and a former legislative page.
“Our preliminary investigation reveals that Miss Montmarquet had no knowledge of any of the allegations she has been charged with, and we look forward to speaking with authorities regarding this matter as expeditiously as possible,” he said Thursday.
It wasn’t clear if Edwards and Richardson had attorneys. Edwards and Montmarquet were freed on bond Thursday,
Kiffin has touted the discipline in his program and a clean arrest record as recently as Wednesday’s SEC teleconference.
Richardson is a 5-foot-10, 165-pound wide receiver from Pahokee, Fla. Jackson is a 6-foot, 174-pound defensive back from Lake Charles, La. Edwards is a 5-foot-10 defensive back from Cleveland, Ohio.
More details as they develop online and in Saturday’s News Sentinel.