Friend says Dotson spoke of hearing voices, seeing demons

Updated: August 7, 2003, 12:33 AM ET

DALLAS -- A former Baylor basketball player accused of killing teammate and roommate Patrick Dennehy talked of hearing voices and seeing demons rise from his sleeping wife in the months before the shooting, says a 19-year-old man who befriended Carlton Dotson in Waco earlier this year.

"I know that his soul might have been infected by negative thoughts. But his spirit was good," Roman Young said in a story in Thursday's editions of The Dallas Morning News. He said he did not consider Dotson, who is charged with murder, to be a violent or threatening person.

Young, a Galveston native, said he and Dotson often prayed and read the Bible together.

"He really had a desire in his heart to get involved with some Christians," Young said during an interview with the newspaper at a church event in La Porte, 20 miles outside Houston. "He said to me, 'I'm trying to surround myself with some positive people."

Melissa Kethley, Dotson's now-estranged wife, has said Dotson had introduced her to a Baylor student named Roman in May.

She said that after meeting Roman, Dotson seemed more preoccupied with religion and began to talk more about seeing visions and hearing voices.

Young said Dotson talked about how he thought his wife was unfaithful and recalled seeing a demon rise from the woman's body as she slept. Kethley, who has repeatedly denied any infidelity, has recounted a similar story.

Dennehy's decomposing body was found July 25 in a grassy field four miles from the Baylor campus in Waco. He died from gunshot wounds to the head, according to a preliminary autopsy report.

An unnamed informant told Delaware police that Dotson told someone he shot Dennehy in the head with a 9mm pistol as the two argued while firing guns, according to court records filed in the case.

Young said he and Dotson met in March or early April of this year, while he walked in the neighborhood surrounding his apartment near the university.

Young said he and Dotson, who both came from difficult family backgrounds, struck up an instant friendship.

In a jailhouse interview last week with the newspaper, Dotson recounted meeting someone in Texas named Roman who told him he would be able to do miraculous things.

Young, described as a frail, soft-spoken man, saw Dotson as a big brother. And he admired the player's semi-celebrity status on campus, the newspaper reported.

Young moved home to Deer Park, 16 miles east of Houston, in mid-May and has not spoken to Dotson since

Young also said he and Dotson often smoked marijuana together.

He said it was a "habitual" practice for Dotson and Dennehy -- although he believes the players never used other drugs.

Young said he was stunned by the shooting death of Dennehy, since Dotson always spoke fondly of him.

"They were both good people. I just don't see why it happened," he said. "To me, it's a tragedy. I wonder if I could have done more."

Dennehy's funeral was scheduled to be held Thursday at the non-denominational Jubilee Christian Center outside San Jose, Calif. More than 3,000 people were expected to attend, including Baylor President Robert Sloan and head basketball coach Dave Bliss.

This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index