Former UGA basketball guard dismissed from Tulane after murder arrest

Teshaun Hightower

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Teshaun Hightower

Tulane University has dismissed a former Georgia standout from its basketball team after he was arrested Saturday in a Henry County homicide investigation.

Teshaun Hightower, 22, is facing a murder charge in an April 8 deadly shooting at an apartment complex in Stockbridge. He played guard for the University of Georgia before transferring to Tulane for the 2019-20 season.

Tulane “immediately dismissed” Hightower from the basketball program after learning of his arrest, athletic director Troy Dannen said in a statement obtained by AJC.com.

RELATED: Ex-Georgia basketball player now at Tulane charged with murder

Hightower was one of six suspects identified by police in the Stockbridge shooting. According to an arrest warrant, the group went to the North Park at Eagle’s Landing complex on Spindletop Way to confront the victim, Devontae Long.

On the morning of the shooting, Long and another suspect, Tyreek Farmer, were involved in a fistfight inside an apartment in the 600 building, according to the warrant. Investigators said Farmer claimed he was pistol-whipped by Long and called in several friends as backup.

They believe Hightower arrived at the complex with five others not long after. He is accused of pulling the trigger when the group confronted Long in a breezeway, according to the warrant. Long’s girlfriend allegedly saw Hightower with the gun and heard the gunshots.

“(The woman) said Teshaun pulled out a turquoise and black handgun out of his pocket,” the warrant states. “(She) ran into the apartment and hid behind the wall next to the door.”

Long later died at a hospital, police said.

Media Release: On Wednesday April 8, 2020 officers with the Henry County Police Department's Uniform Patrol Division...

Posted by Henry County Police Department on Thursday, April 23, 2020

With Hightower’s arrest, five of the suspects are now in custody. Hightower, his brother Jeffrey Hightower, Farmer, Tobias Gresham and Antonie Gresham all face murder, aggravated assault and weapons charges in connection with the shooting, according to police.

Teshaun Hightower is also charged with misdemeanor battery after police said he pushed past Long’s girlfriend. Another suspect, Kelvonie Burney, is still at large Monday, and a seventh unidentified man mentioned in Hightower’s arrest warrant has not been named publicly.

On April 8, 2020, the below subjects were involved in the Homicide at 600 Building of Spindletop Way, Stockbridge GA....

Posted by Henry County Police Department on Friday, April 24, 2020

Hightower, who is originally from Lithonia, played his senior season at Collins Hill High School and made the AJC all-metro team for Gwinnett County. He went on to play at Mount Zion Prep in Baltimore before enrolling at UGA.

At Tulane, Hightower was the Green Wave’s leading scorer last season. He announced he was entering the NBA draft on April 18, 10 days after the deadly shooting, but said he would return for his senior season if his draft prospects were not favorable.

“I would like to thank God for this opportunity to play the game I love and have the privilege to play,” Hightower said in a statement posted to Twitter. “I want to thank my family, coaches and teammates/brothers for going to battle with me every day throughout this past year. A huge thank you to Green Wave Nation for accepting me in to such a prestigious family.”

The deadly shooting remains under investigation. Anyone with information about the case or Burney’s whereabouts is asked to contact detective S. Harlan at 770-288-8494.

— AJC contributor Todd Holcomb and The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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