Local News

NC State RB Shadrach Thornton kicked off team following arrest

Posted September 30, 2015 6:42 a.m. EDT
Updated September 30, 2015 5:45 p.m. EDT

— North Carolina State University running back Shadrach Thornton was dismissed from the university's football team Wednesday afternoon about 18 hours after he was charged in a crash that left a pedestrian injured.

"It's an unfortunate set of circumstances, but we've made the decision to dismiss Shadrach from our program," NC State head coach Dave Doeren said in a statement.

Raleigh police said Thornton, of 2717 Western Blvd., was driving a scooter that hit Jimmie Woodard near the intersection of Avent Ferry Road and Western Boulevard at about 9:15 p.m. Raleigh police said Thornton was driving north on the sidewalk on the southbound side of Avent Ferry Road. Woodard was walking south on the sidewalk.

Woodard was not seriously injured, police said, but he had to get stitches to close a wound on his face.

"I hold no grudge against him," Woodard said. "I don't know (Thornton). I know of him now, but I don't know the man, so I hold no grudge."

Woodard said he was waiting for a bus when he was hit.

"The next thing I know, I see a motor scooter coming my way, and I just got hit," he said. "I was aware because I saw the blood on my shirt."

Woodard said Thornton did not stay to help him, but Lee Turner, Thornton's attorney, said Thornton talked with Woodard before leaving the scene.

"I understand that he was polite, cooperative and gave the officers a full statement about what happened," Turner said. "I understand that after the accident he did have a conversation with the victim before leaving the scene."

Police found Thornton, 22, in his apartment at the College Inn Residence Hall nearby. They charged him with failure to stop and render aid and failure to provide information. A traffic citation states that Thornton was also charged with driving on the sidewalk and operating an unregistered vehicle. Court records show Thornton paid a $500 bond and was back at home just after midnight.

The charge is not Thornton's first brush with the law. He has pending charges of operating a moped without a helmet and exceeding a safe speed in a separate scooter incident. Thornton is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 29 for those charges.

In the summer of 2013, he was charged with assaulting a female after witnesses alleged he and his girlfriend were involved in a physical altercation in the D.H. Hill Library. Thornton was given a deferred prosecution ruling in that case and missed a single game in the 2013 football season.

He was suspended for the first two games of the 2015 season for violating team rules, although university officials did not specify what led to that punishment.

Thornton was also cited twice – in December 2013 and again in March 2014 – for possession of marijuana. In each instance, charges were voluntarily dismissed.

Thornton practiced Wednesday morning for the Wolfpack, but Doeren announced his dismissal from the team at about 4:30 p.m.

Doeren said the university will continue to support Thornton's pursuit of a degree. Thornton, a senior from Hinesville, Ga., is scheduled to graduate in the spring of 2016.

One of Thornton's backfield mates, sophomore Jaylen Samuels, said coaches did not address the incident during the team's practice.

"In practice, (Shardrach) did a couple reps. I don't know the full situation or what happened. I don't know if he's playing or not, but in practice today he was getting some reps," Samuels said. "Nothing was said, we saw (that) it (happened), we just knew about it. But we didn't know exactly what happened."