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Arrest made after deadly shooting of Arizona Rattlers football player

Posted at 9:11 AM, Jan 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-22 19:53:00-05

PHOENIX — An arrest has been made in connection to a shooting that left a 25-year-old Arizona Rattlers football player dead last month.

Lance McDowdell, a defensive lineman for the Arizona Rattlers, was found shot in a parking lot of an apartment complex near 44th Street and Thomas Road on Dec. 20, 2019. He was pronounced dead at the hospital a short time later.

After the shooting, police said they had "very little to go on" in terms of what led to the shooting or what suspects were involved. They asked the community for help solving the crime.

Phoenix police announced Tuesday that 28-year-old Christopher Verland Ayers III was connected with the homicide.

Ayers was reportedly booked into a Maricopa County jail on unrelated charges after the shooting. Police originally recommended he be charged with homicide in McDowDell's death but the Maricopa County Attorney's Office sent the case back to police asking for more evidence.

Police do say Ayers is still a suspect in the case.

The motive for the shooting is still not yet known.