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Man who killed Joe McKnight released without charges

Houston Texans v New York Jets

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - OCTOBER 08: Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets returns a kickoff 100-yards for a touchdown in the third quarter against the Houston Texans at MetLife Stadium on October 8, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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The man who shot and killed former NFL player Joe McKnight was released without charges hours later.

Ronald Gasser, who was taken into custody after shooting McKnight, has been released, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office confirmed.

Police said Gasser and McKnight exchanged words in a traffic incident in a New Orleans suburb. Gasser reportedly remained at the scene and handed his gun over to police voluntarily. Although he hasn’t spoken publicly, he is presumably claiming he shot McKnight in self-defense.

According to police, McKnight did not have a gun either on his body or in his car.

A New Orleans native, McKnight was named the national high school player of the year by Parade magazine in 2006. After a college career at USC he was a fourth-round pick of the Jets in 2010 and played there for three seasons. He later played for the Chiefs and has most recently played in the Canadian Football League.

McKnight was 28 years old.