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Report: Copeland hit by ricochet at party

12/16/2003 - Colorado Buffaloes

BOULDER, Colo. -- A bullet was discovered lodged in the
armpit of a Colorado basketball player more than 24 hours after
shots were fired at a party he attended, the Rocky Mountain News
reported Tuesday.

Chris Copeland, 19, was hit by a ricochet when gunmen fired
about 15 shots at a party early Sunday, coach Ricardo Patton
told the newspaper.

Doctors missed the bullet when they initially examined Copeland.

"He's fine. He's up and about. But our trainers don't know when
he'll be able to practice," Patton said.

Investigators hope to recover the bullet if it can be removed
without endangering Copeland, a 6-foot-8 sophomore forward from
Richmond, Va., Police Cmdr. Kurt Weiler told the newspaper.

Copeland missed Sunday's practice and won't play Friday when
Colorado meets Tennessee State, Patton said.

Patton said none of the basketball players who attended the
party, held by Colorado football player Alex Ligon, did anything
wrong. But the coach also said that they should have exercised
better judgment.

"You have to look at the history of these kinds of parties,"
Patton said. "It's unrealistic for those guys to think they're
going to a harmless party at someone's house and nothing could
occur."

Police identified two Denver men as suspects, and called for
them to surrender.

Jamar Anthony Johnson, 18, and Jonathan Lamar Martin, 19, were
being sought, and both were considered armed and dangerous, police
said.