Ex-Hokies LB cleared of homicide joins Iowa JUCO

Former Virginia Tech linebacker Isi Etute, who was discovered not responsible of homicide in Could in a case stemming from a catfishing scheme, will enroll at Iowa Western Neighborhood School for the 2022 soccer season, his lawyer confirmed Monday.

Etute entered the switch portal in June, however his legal professional, James Turk, stated it was troublesome to seek out Division I faculties prepared to supply a scholarship following the extremely publicized trial.

Etute was charged with the homicide within the beating demise of Blacksburg, Virginia, resident Jerry Smith in Could 2021 following a case of catfishing, by which Smith portrayed himself as a lady on-line to lure college-aged males to his residence for intercourse.

Etute was a freshman linebacker at Virginia Tech on the time he first linked with Smith on the courting app Tinder. Smith was utilizing the pseudonym “Angie Renee” and used pictures of a lady to cover his id.

On their first encounter, Etute obtained oral intercourse, together with $50, from Smith in an residence close to Virginia Tech’s campus. Etute met with Smith once more on Could 31, 2021 in hopes of figuring out whether or not the particular person he knew as “Angie Renee” was truly a person, in line with his testimony at trial. After utilizing his cellphone flash gentle to see Smith’s face, Etute punched Smith a number of occasions and kicked Smith within the face earlier than exiting the residence.

Etute testified that he noticed Smith attain towards his mattress and feared for his life. Police found a knife hidden between Smith’s mattress and field spring.

On Could 27, 2022, a Christiansburg, Virginia, jury discovered Etute not responsible, acknowledging his self protection argument was believable.

After the trial, Turk stated the previous three-star recruit deserved a possibility to restart his soccer profession.

“I feel he is earned the precise to return to high school and additional his tutorial and sports activities profession,” Turk stated exterior the courthouse. “I feel the college that finally ends up taking him goes to get most likely loads wiser and a a lot smarter and an distinctive athlete.”

Three different Virginia Tech gamers who testified at Etute’s trial have additionally since transferred from the college. Jordan Brunson and Jalen Hampton, who accompanied Etute on the time of the killing however who didn’t enter Smith’s residence left for Miami (Ohio) and Elon, respectively. Da’Shawn Elder, who accompanied Etute on his preliminary assembly with Smith however left earlier than any sexual encounters occurred, stays within the switch portal.

Iowa Western completed final season 10-1 and ranked No. 2 within the NJCAA Division I rankings.

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