When Durant High (Fla.) football star Grover Wills was shot and killed in a drug deal gone bad, a community was left to search for how a beloved student athlete could be gone so soon. Now we may have some idea: He was shot and killed by a man with two firearm violations since September alone.
As reported by the Tampa Bay Times, among other sources, it is widely believed that Wills was shot and killed by 20-year-old Samuel Morrissey Jr. The admitted drug dealer allegedly shot Wills during a marijuana deal gone bad, with Wills apparently trying to sandwich fake bills between real ones before his ruse was discovered. Morrissey Jr. claims that Wills was shot in a struggle over Morrissey’s firearm which emerged when the dealer attempted to repossess his gun after he discovered Wills’ fake bills.
No one denies that Wills placed himself in a dangerous place by attempting the drug deal in the first place. What many are furious about is that Morrissey was still had a firearm on the street in the first place.
As outlined by the Times, Morrissey had two other misdemeanor charges related to possessing a firearm and marijuana that were pending at the time of his arrest for shooting and killing Wills:
The first time deputies arrested Samuel Morrissey Jr., he faced charges of possession of marijuana and carrying a concealed firearm. He plead no contest in September, and the judge gave him a break by withholding adjudication.
Ten days later, the 20-year-old asked for his Glock .9 mm pistol back.
The second time deputies arrested Morrissey, they charged him with carrying a concealed semiautomatic and felony possession of marijuana. The charge was lowered to a misdemeanor, and Morrissey was released on bail.
Why the second charge was lowered to a misdemeanor, allowing Morrissey to go free on bail, remains a mystery. Whatever the reason, Morrissey was still on the streets, toting a Glock, in perfect position to meet and eventually shoot Wills in a tragically premature end to a talented high school athletic career.
“That’s crazy that they let him slide like that,” Wills’ stepfather Travis Jones told the Times. “They just let him go, and he took my baby. It’s very hard. My mind feels like a thousand pieces.”