EMU basketball star charged with two felonies

Natalie Kelley, Editor

Emoni Bates, a former student at Lincoln high school – and high school basketball star – was arrested Sunday night after a routine traffic stop. Bates had graduated early and played for a year at Memphis, before transferring to Eastern Michigan University to continue his basketball career. 

Bates was pulled over for a routine traffic stop about two miles off campus in Superior Township, when the officer discovered a firearm in the vehicle he was driving. Bates was charged with carrying a concealed weapon and also altering ID marks on a firearm. 

In the state of Michigan, carrying a concealed weapon could land Bates in prison for up to  5 years with a $2,500 bail. Altering an ID mark on a firearm carries a penalty of up to two years in prison and a fine up to $1,000.

Derrick Jackson, the public information officer for the Superior Township, Washtenaw County sheriff’s office, told ESPN that officers “initiated a traffic stop of a vehicle which failed to stop” at an intersection.

Bates’ lawyer, Steve Haney, asked that a plea of not guilty be entered on Bates’ behalf because of the fact that Bates was driving a borrowed car, and that there were more details to the story.

“Reserve judgment on this,” Haney said. “There’s way more to the story. He borrowed someone’s car, was pulled over and a gun was located in the car.”

Not only is Bates in trouble with the law, it was announced that Bates would be suspended from Eastern Michigan – per the university’s statement. 

“We are aware of a situation involving men’s basketball student-athlete Emoni Bates,” the school said. “Eastern Michigan University takes all allegations of this nature very seriously. Per department policy, he has been suspended automatically from practice and playing privileges until the legal process is resolved. Because this is an on-going legal matter, the University will have no further comment at this time.