Two Rutgers University football players were suspended Tuesday after a paintball incident led to both players facing criminal charges.
Authorities charged Malachi “Max” Melton and Chris Long, both 19, with three counts of aggravated assault and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose after several students were shot by paintballs from a passing car, Asbury Park Press reported.
“On Monday … at approximately 10 p.m., the Rutgers University Police Department (RUPD) responded to the area of Livingston Campus in the Township of Piscataway for the report of three student victims that were struck with paintballs discharged from a motor vehicle,” said Rutgers University Police Chief Kenneth Cop in a statement, according to Asbury Park Press. He went on to say that the three victims suffered minor injuries and that the suspects had been taken into custody. (RELATED: Tennessee Embarrassingly Cancels 2022 Football Game Against Army)
“I was informed that Chris Long and Malachi Melton were taken into police custody early this morning as a result of an incident involving a paint ball gun,” Rutgers Head Football coach Greg Schiano said in a statement Tuesday morning, according to Asbury Park Press. “Both players have been suspended immediately.”
Rutgers defensive backs Max Melton and Chris Long have been suspended by Greg Schiano, effective immediately.
Melton starts at corner and has two interceptions this season.
— Clayton Sayfie (@CSayf23) September 21, 2021
Melton started three games at cornerback for the Scarlet Knights. He recorded two interceptions, including a 61-yard return touchdown against Temple on Sept. 4. He also recovered a fumble and blocked a punt. He is the younger brother of wide receiver Bo Melton.
Long appeared in all three games for Rutgers but did not record any statistics.
Rutgers plays Michigan in Ann Arbor on Saturday.