WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Lamont Britt, a Virginia State University football player, pleaded guilty Tuesday to assaulting the Winston-Salem State University starting quarterback during a CIAA banquet last November.
Britt pleaded guilty to a charge of simple assault.
He was charged with misdemeanor assault inflicting serious injury, but the prosecutor, Jennifer Martin, said “the statutory elements for assault inflicting serious injury have not been met.”
District Court Judge Denise Hartsfield sentenced Britt to 45 days in jail, suspended for one year; probation for a year, and imposed the condition that he complete or be in the process of completing his education. Hartsfield also ordered Britt to cooperate with any continued investigations.
According to an arrest warrant, Britt is accused of hitting WSSU quarterback Rudy Johnson in the face and head in a restroom Nov. 15 during the CIAA awards luncheon at WSSU’s Anderson Center.
The luncheon was the day before WSSU was scheduled to play VSU at Bowman Gray Stadium in the CIAA’s championship game. CIAA officials canceled the game after the fight.
Johnson said that as many as six Virginia State players jumped him, giving him a black eye, cuts to his face and a sore back and ribs. Johnson was only able to identify Britt, who was the only one to be charged. He was suspended from the team after the incident.
When he returns, he will be put on probation for one year. Britt also is required to complete 30 hours of community service and take anger-management sessions.
An investigation by a lawyer from Washington, D.C., who was hired by VSU concluded that Britt acted alone when he assaulted Johnson.
In the report, a VSU player identified as “Student H” said he entered the restroom at the Anderson Center to use a sink. Johnson was standing at an adjacent sink. The report indicated that this player is Britt because it mentioned that the player was arrested for his role in the incident.
“Johnson immediately started to engage in trash talk which he (the VSU player) felt was offensive in tone,” the report said.
The VSU player indicated that Johnson glared at him in a threatening manner.
WSSU officials strongly disagreed with VSU’s report and want the NCAA and CIAA to impose sanctions against VSU, including ordering VSU to pay WSSU for the lost revenue when the championship game was canceled, and place VSU on probation and strip scholarships from its football team. The CIAA ruled that VSU was ineligible to play in the Division II playoffs.