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News About The California University of Pennsylvania Beating

November 2014

Six California University of Pennsylvania football players were charged in the beating of another Cal U student, who as of November 3rd, 2014, is in critical condition.

Attorney Shrager is featured on several news media discussing the case. Read below for more information or click on the links provided.

WTAE Channel 4 News: Video in Cal U football assault case released

“We have witnesses that we’re prepared to call that have a very different version of events. That indicate this gentleman was the aggressor. And he’s a grown man, 30-years-old trying to fight these 19-year-olds,” said Dunkley’s lawyer David J. Shrager. “Anybody who watches that video can see that man was trying to fight.”

Oberserver-Reporter Video: Former Cal U. football players to stand trial in beating

The six California University of Pennsylvania football players accused of severely beating a man in the borough last month will stand trial following a two-hour preliminary hearing that included grainy surveillance video of the fight and contradictory testimony about what happened.

From the Observer – Reporter…

A sixth California University of Pennsylvania football player was charged in the attack last week outside an off-campus restaurant that left a man hospitalized in critical condition with severe brain injuries.

Shelby Wilkerson, a freshman defensive back, turned himself into authorities Saturday morning after witnesses identified him as participating in the attack on Lewis Campbell III outside Spuds restaurant early Thursday, California police said.

Campbell was beaten shortly after 2 a.m. following an argument in the 200 block of Wood Street. Campbell, 30, of West Chester, was downgraded Saturday morning to critical condition while at Allegheny General Hospital’s trauma unit after being listed in fair condition Friday afternoon, hospital staff said.

Wilkerson, 20, of Harrisburg, was charged with aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, harassment and criminal conspiracy, and arraigned Saturday afternoon by District Judge Jay Weller. He was taken to Washington County jail on $50,000 bond, which was significantly less than his five co-defendants received upon their arraignment early Thursday by District Judge Joshua Kanalis.

James Williamson, 20, of Parkville, Md.; Corey Ford, 22, of Harrisburg; Jonathan Barlow, 21, of Pittsburgh; Rodney Gillin, 20, of Reading; and D’Andre Dunkley, 19, of Philadelphia, face the same charges as Wilkerson, however, those five men remain jailed on $500,000 bond.

Dunkley’s attorney, David Shrager, called their bond “quite excessive” and said he plans to petition the court this week to have it reduced for his client.

“I do believe the bond was extremely high for the circumstances,” Shrager said. “It’s not supposed to punish someone for mere allegations.”

Shrager added Dunkley has never been in trouble with the law and was in good-standing with the Cal U. community. He denied Dunkley was involved in the attack.

“The charges are extremely serious and the allegations are upsetting, but the family would simply ask that the public not rush to judgment until all the facts are brought to bear,” Shrager said. “I’m still conducting my investigation, but from what I have observed so far regarding the statements of various witnesses, there is certainly a lot more to this story and my understanding is that my client never touched the victim in any way.”

But Campbell’s father, Lewis Campbell Jr., lashed out at all of the football players in an interview Friday night with WTAE-TV. He said his son, who moved to California recently to be with his girlfriend Syresse Asparagus, suffered serious brain injuries during the beating. California police previously said an argument between Asparagus and one of the football players prompted the fight in which Campbell was injured.

The beating prompted Cal U. to suspend the five football players and cancel Saturday’s game against Gannon. University officials confirmed Wilkerson was suspended indefinitely from both the team and school.

“While this is certainly disheartening news, it speaks to the diligence of our California Borough and California University police, who are working together to conduct a thorough investigation,” Cal U. interim President Geraldine Jones said of the subsequent arrest. “Everyone involved in this incident should be held accountable for their actions.”

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Man allegedly beaten by Cal U football players in serious condition

Lewis Campbell III moved to Washington County from West Chester to be with his girlfriend, his father said Friday from his son’s hospital room at Allegheny General Hospital.

He was defending that woman, Shareese Asparagus, 22, of West Chester after she exchanged words with one of five California University of Pennsylvania football players later charged with severely beating Mr. Campbell III early Thursday outside Spuds restaurant in California, Pa.

“He was out with his girl to get something to eat,” said Mr. Campbell Jr. “The guy said something to the girl and he defended her. He had a very strong sense of protecting his girlfriend, his child, or anyone he’s related to. If any of his friends or family are threatened, he will rise to their defense immediately.”

Mr. Campbell III, 30, was in serious condition Friday evening, according to a hospital spokeswoman. He had been listed in critical condition when he was flown by helicopter to the hospital early Thursday. Mr. Campbell Jr. said a doctor told him Friday that his son had blood on his brain but was stable.

“He’s waking up from time to time but acting out,” Mr. Campbell Jr. said. “It looks like he’s disoriented. He’s trying to get out of bed. He’s so disoriented it scares all of us.”

Mr. Campbell said his son was not a student at the university. He had been working at a baby food manufacturing plant in West Chester before he moved to Washington County in October to be with Ms. Asparagus, a student at Cal U.. They had been dating for a couple of months, Mr. Campbell Jr. said.

“He’s a hard worker,” Mr. Campbell said of his son. “He has a very strong family-protective thing about him.”

Mr. Campbell said he did not know of any relationship between his son and the football players who allegedly attacked him.

“One thing that should be understood is that people go to school for [an] education, and if you’re involved in sports you have the opportunity to do something with your life,” he said.

“I feel as though these guys should serve the maximum amount of time because they’re a danger to society. Would you want those type of guys living next door to you?”

Cal U has suspended the football players and canceled and forfeited today’s home football game against Gannon University.

Charged with aggravated assault and other crimes are Jay Barlow, 21, of East Liberty; D’Andre Dunkley, 19, of Philadelphia; Corey Ford, 22, of Harrisburg; Rodney Gillin, 20, of West Lawn, Pa.; and James Williamson, 20, of Parkville, Md. Cal U has suspended all five.

Attorney Phil DiLucente, who is representing Mr. Ford, said that Mr. Campbell III was “jealous” that Mr. Ford was talking to Ms. Asparagus.

Mr. Ford “was simply courting a young lady at this establishment when the victim approached my client and … had words with him.” He said Mr. Ford then was “simply removed from the situation” and did not punch, push or kick Mr. Campbell.

“He was looking for love that night, not violence,” Mr. DiLucente said of his client.

David J. Shrager described his client, Mr. Dunkley, as a good student and said it was his understanding that he’d never been in trouble with the law before.

“His father is devastated by these charges as the allegations are quite serious,” Mr. Shrager said. “My intention is to speak with the defendant and defend this case accordingly.”

Mr. Campbell has a 7-year-old son, Nasiir Lewis Campbell, who is staying with family in West Chester. Mr. Campbell Jr. said he had not yet told his grandson what happened to his father.

Ms. Asparagus is not the boy’s mother, Mr. Campbell Jr. said.