Originally published August 21, 2008 at 04:24p.m., updated August 21, 2008 at 05:02p.m.

Markieff Morris’ attorney enters not guilty plea in battery case

An attorney enters a not guilty plea for KU basketball recruit Markieff Morris.


An attorney entered a not guilty plea for incoming Kansas University basketball player Markieff Morris Thursday in Lawrence Municipal Court and denied that his client fired an Airsoft rifle BB gun out of his Jayhawker Towers apartment Saturday night.

According to the KU Public Safety Office, Morris, 18, admitted to shooting the Airsoft rifle BB gun out of his apartment Saturday. A 47-year-old woman in the courtyard below received minor injuries when she was hit in the arm by a plastic pellet. According to a police report, Morris was suspected of using alcohol.

Brad Finkeldei, Morris' attorney, said the facts in the case haven't been accurately reported.

"Most importantly, Mr. Morris was not the person who fired the Airsoft pellet gun from the window," Finkeldei said. "He did not admit to firing the gun out the window."

Finkeldei said he wasn't able to comment further because of a pending investigation.

A Dec. 12 Lawrence Municipal Court hearing has been set in the case, in which Morris is charged with battery, although he could submit an application for diversion, the city prosecutor's office said.

The case does involve the possibility of jail time, City Prosecutor Tom Porter said.

Morris also faces possible university sanctions if he's found to have violated a student housing policy, which could include suspension from university housing, according to the KU Student Housing handbook.

"University code and housing policy expressly prohibits weapons of any type, including pellet guns and paintball guns," said university spokeswoman Jill Jess.

A university investigation will address whether an Airsoft BB gun is considered to be a weapon, Jess said. Federal law forbids the university from discussing student disciplinary investigations.

Ken Farris, a distributor of Airsoft guns in Lawrence, said the guns aren't considered weapons unless they're used as such.

"These things can be used in a game," Farris said of their intended purpose, "but it's not a toy that you're supposed to run around in public with or snipe people from windows."


5DecadeHawk 14 years, 1 month ago

The fact is WE DON'T KNOW FOR SURE what happened.It's the freekin' LJW reporting this, you can't trust anything to be true.Maybe they changed the court date? Maybe the LJW reported it wrong? Who knows? Anything is possible with the Lawrence Journal Inquirer.Let the courts sort it out.I trust Bill Self to do what is right for KU and KU Basketball.I'm glad that the person that got hit didn't have any serious injuries.The rest... it's all overblown hype by the slime elements inside the local paper just trying to make a buck on sleaze.

Kyle Cornish 14 years, 1 month ago

Maybe they changed the court date... Ever think of that one? Of course you wouldn't...

jayhawkinATL 14 years, 1 month ago

I can't believe he's pleading innocent...didn't he confess?!?! Still think the kid is an idiot!!!

bigjay83 14 years, 1 month ago

5Decade bashing the LJW. What a surprise............The guy really needs a hobby.

yates33333 14 years, 1 month ago

I'm glad I don't live in Lawrence any more. Particularly if I had to live on campus. Great school academically, but...

KUbsee69 14 years, 1 month ago

I think yates is (correctly) implying that the "Berkley of the Plains" title, given to KU by Playboy several years back, is so sadly true. A liberal bastion, functioning at its "best".Now, so there won't be any confusion, the following has nothing to do with yates comment.When I attended KU, I actually walked down Mass many times with a handgun in a hip holster and nobody even blinked. Several downtown stores sold firearms and ammo and there was even a firearms dealer and repair shop on Mass, at about the 1100 block. Currently, the state of Kansas not only allows concealed carry, but is an "open carry" state. When I was there, many of the students kept firearms, of all types and calibers, in their dorm rooms. On my dorm wing alone, I'd estimate that at least 1/3 to 1/2 of the rooms had firearms. We used to carry them openly through the dorm lobbies to go our target shooting and hunting. Shooting rats at the Eudora dump in the evenings was a common pastime. (Yeah, and PETA can bite it). And gee whiz ... there was no gun violence on the campus and nobody even accidentally shot themselves.Now, at KU, you can't own a child's pea-shooter without being labeled a potential assassin. Not even staff, faculty, or students that are legally licensed to carry a weapon can do so on campus.So, while some of you "Berkley" types might think this is good, many of us think what's happened to our alma mater is sad ... very sad.Finally, for those of you that will undoubtedly comment that this is political and isn't a sports site comment, you're so wrong. They are not called the shooting sports for nothing.

sdoyel 14 years, 1 month ago

Sad that this article made my hometown newspaper in Rolla, MO....

canuckhawk 14 years, 1 month ago

I probably shouldn't be, but I'm amazed and disappointed that the assassination of one of your country's presidents is such an easy source of humor.

kansaspike 14 years, 1 month ago

A "mystery shooter"....interesting.Most interesting that you can't prove otherwise.

Rick Arnoldy 14 years, 1 month ago

5DecadeHawk you're getting tiresome. It is news when papers are filed. It is news when a court date is set. It is news when a plea is entered. It's a newspaper's job to report the news. Other shooters is a plausible possibility. This is a game where multiple shooters fire at each other, correct? Was Markieff playing this game alone? Sounds to me like he was just the only one who got caught. As to the lawyer, he sounds like bad news. This is a minor incident. Markieff, just take your medicine and be done with it.

5DecadeHawk 14 years, 1 month ago

Here we go again.The LJW wants to try another legal case in the newspaper."Brad Finkeldei, Morris' attorney, said the facts in the case haven't been accurately reported."Considering the LJW's history, that's the most believeable statement I've seen.Wouldn't it be nice if the local newspaper would allow the local courts to do their job without trying to do it for them? They reported the initial incident, they should report the result.It's pointless to report every time a piece of paper gets filed in this case.Let the courts DO THEIR JOB.

jayhawkliz 14 years, 1 month ago

Look the fact is the gun was fired, it hit someone, it does not matter what type. The fact is it should not have happened. Where is the common sense. What if it hit that women in the eye? This is not a joke of any kind!

rockchalkjayhawk4ku11 14 years, 1 month ago

Minor injuries? those things sting for like 7 seconds then the pain is gone.

Mike Blur 14 years, 1 month ago

5Decade, you're getting way too worked up about this. Sure you're providing free entertainment for those of us on the sidelines, but you should let it go. Your obsession with the case is just plain unhealthy.

Trey Hohman 14 years, 1 month ago

...... is mr. morris the L.H. Oswald of college athletics?....i think it was those pesky Cubans who shot that poor woman last Sat. night....

ku98 14 years, 1 month ago

Canuck, please get off your high horse... Have you ever seen the Seinfeld episode and the "magic loogie"? If Seinfeld uses a President's assassination for humor, why can't we?

5DecadeHawk 14 years, 1 month ago

It's interesting how the court date magically changes from one LJW article to the next.The inital LJW article reported, "He is scheduled to appear at 1 p.m. Sept. 10 "source: article reports, "A Dec. 12 Lawrence Municipal Court hearing has been set in the case"Funny how the facts seem to always float around loose when the LJW is on the attack to try a case in it's pages instead of allowing the courts to do their job.Can anyone believe a word the LJW reports anymore?

ku98 14 years, 1 month ago

Let's reunite the Warren Commission to take care of this one.

TKELuke 14 years, 1 month ago

  1. He shouldn't have shot the airsoft BB gun2. Never admit to anything, ever!3. airsoft BB pelets don't cause minor injuries to the arm. (Maybe if you were like a footaway)

Michael Pannacciulli 14 years, 1 month ago

brilliant, way to go buddy!maybe the morris twins are forming a militia against a resurgent quantrail and his raiders? ever think of that? they are from philly, no walmarts there. they just wanted to see what it was like to be a hillbilly.

Lance Hobson 14 years, 1 month ago

I have credible evidence that there was a second shooter behind a grassy knoll. MM is a scapegoat here, the CIA knows the real story.As for the injuries from a plastic pellet - we are talking about a girl here. I'm sure she'll be suing for 10% of his net worth after he makes it in the NBA.

FlaHawk 14 years, 1 month ago

This is starting to sound like the Texas Book Repository story. Some poeple never believed Oswald acted alone!

ku98 14 years, 1 month ago

Strikewso, you're dead on about the grassy knoll... Just look at the tape"Back, and to the left"..."Back, and to the left"..."Back, and to the left"...

flipborder02 14 years, 1 month ago

I am not saying he shouldn't get punished but my God it was a plastic air soft pellet.

Lance Hobson 14 years, 1 month ago

I do hate Quanrill and his dirty raiders, so I'm willing to let this go if the Morris twins did indeed have revenge in mind while training with this toy gun.

vmwskywalk 14 years, 1 month ago

When I woke up this morning my single goal was to not disappoint a Canadian. Now my day is ruined! EH!

Trey Hohman 14 years, 1 month ago

jfk rocked & so did lincoln & william mckinnley...why are guns still legal & why do we now recruit back-assed spoiled players who have no idea who the previously mentioned presidents even were & why do these recruits like 2 shoot old women when they're drunk & then deny it as if us good old "kansas folk" are plain dumb?....autistic perhaps, hmm? i'm insulted & I hope morris get at least 100 hours of community service, the brat...grow upwake up!

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