Virginia Tech freshman football player charged with murder

BLACKSBURG, Va. — Isimemen “Isi” Etute, a freshman linebacker for the Virginia Tech Hoakies, has been charged with second-degree murder in connection to a Tuesday night homicide, police confirmed Wednesday.

The university confirmed Etute’s arrest in a statement that outlined his immediate suspension from both the university and its football team.

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According to the Blacksburg Police Department, a welfare check conducted at around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday led officers to discover the body of 40-year-old Jerry Smith, an acquaintance of Etute, WSET reported.

Etute was initially identified as a person of interest in the case, arrested Wednesday and is being held without bond, ESPN reported.

Smith’s cause of death has not yet been made public.

“Blacksburg Police continues to lead this ongoing investigation, and the university will assist law enforcement agencies working the case in any way it can,” the school stated.

An outside linebacker from Virginia Beach, Virginia, Etute was the 29th-ranked recruit in the state and was rated a three-star recruit by ESPN.