Days before his death, Altee Tenpenny walked into oncoming traffic with a loaded handgun outside a police administration building, according to police.
Tenpenny claimed the gun belonged to a teammate. Tenpenny, who police observed with a "strong odor of an alcoholic beverage" on his breath, was arrested at approximately 6:00 a.m. on Sunday and charged with possession of a firearm and discharging that weapon. He was dismissed from the Nicholls State football team following the arrest.
One day after being released from a detention center, the former Alabama running back died in a one-car wreck outside Glen Allan, Miss. while driving back to Little Rock, Ark. He was 20-years old.
His actions that prompted his dismissal are difficult to understand based on a police report obtained by AL.com. After receiving reports of gunshots, police officers observed Tenpenny stepping into "the lane of travel and directly into the path of the truck" and the truck swerving to avoid hitting him. He said he had been drinking downtown after the Nicholls State football game. When the police approached Tenpenny, an officer asked if he had any weapons on him and he replied, "Yes, ma'am." After the police arrested Tenpenny and read him his Miranda rights, they questioned him on why he walked in front of the truck. Tenpenny couldn't explain his actions and the police observed a "strong odor of an alcoholic beverage being emitted on his breath."He stated he was walking in the middle of the road to find a police officer to let them know he was carrying a weapon. He claimed that he took the gun from a Nicholls State teammate -- identified as Kaleb Kador in the police report -- after the teammate got in trouble.A Nicholls State spokesperson couldn't confirm whether the gun was Kador's, but said the school was aware of Tenpenny's claims to police. Kador has been suspended and his university discipline under review, according to the school. Kador didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
Tenpenny initially told police that football was his specialty and he didn't know how to shoot a gun. When the lawmen informed him there were witnesses that heard the gunfire, he stated he only fired the gun to see if it had "one shot in the head."Tenpenny later clarified that he didn't want to be "shot with the gun so he shot into the air to clear the gun," according to the police report. Police later found a "spent round" approximately one block away from where Tenpenny's black Dodge Charger was parked.
Tenpenny was arrested and booked with illegal carrying of weapons, illegal use of weapons or dangerous instrumentalities and obstructing public passages at the detention center. He was released Monday afternoon after posting a $2,100 bond.
Tenpenny passed away Tuesday evening after he crashed that Dodge Charger. While traveling on Mississippi Highway 1, Tenpenny hit a highway sign, his car went airborne and started rolling once it landed, according to the Mississippi Highway Patrol. He was ejected from his vehicle and was later pronounced dead at Delta Regional Medical Center in Greenville, Miss. after being rushed by emergency personnel.
Tenpenny, a highly-regarded player out of North Little Rock High School, spent two seasons at Alabama before transferring to UNLV in May. He was later kicked off the UNLV team in August and arrived at Nicholls State. He had yet to be cleared to play football at the time of his dismissal.