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Attorney: Teshaun Hightower’s brother shot victim in self-defense


TULSA, OK - FEBRUARY 25: Tulane Green Wave Guard Teshaun Hightower (5) surveys the defense as Tulsa Golden Hurricane Forward Elijah Joiner (3) defends during a college basketball game between the Tulsa Golden Hurricane and the Tulane Green Wave on February 25, 2020, at the Reynolds Center in Tulsa, OK. (Photo by David Stacy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Two days after being arrested and charged with murder, the attorney of former Tulane guard Teshaun Hightower said that his client did not fire the gun that killed Devante Anthony Long, and that the shot which killed Long was taken in self-defense.

Hightower was one of six suspects identified by police in the homicide that occurred on April 8th in Stockbridge, Georgia. He was arrested on April 25th and charged with four felonies, including murder and aggravated assault. According to an arrest warrant that was obtained by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Hightower and the five other suspects -- one of whom is his brother, Jeffery Hightower -- visited the apartment building where Long lived after Long and another suspect, Tyreek Farmer, had gotten into a fight.

Farmer claimed that he was pistol-whipped by Long. His friends arrived as backup after Farmer called them.

According to the warrant, Teshaun Hightower was seen pulling the gun by Long’s girlfriend.

"(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.”

But according to an attorney representing Teshaun, it was Jeffery that fired the weapon in self-defense.

“He’s innocent. He didn’t shoot anybody,” attorney Averick Walker said of Teshaun Hightower, speaking to ESPN. “It’s sad that this detective sought to make him out to be a monster and he’s not. When it’s all said and done, it will come out in the wash that the person who did fire the gun shot the gun to protect Teshaun.

“Teshaun’s brother actually fired the weapon and fired in self-defense. The victim came out of the house with a gun in his hand and turned his weapon toward Teshaun to shoot him. That’s why the victim was shot himself.”

Walker added that the Hightowers have the right under Georgia law to stand their ground and defend themselves, claiming that Long was called outside by his girlfriend with the gun in his hand.

Teshaun Hightower has been dismissed from the Tulane program. He is a native of Lithonia, Georgia, that spent the first two seasons of his college career at Georgia. He transferred to Tulane last summer and declared for the NBA draft on April 18th.