Witness accused by defense lawyer of being attacker denies he stabbed Northern Colorado punter Print
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Friday, 03 August 2007 07:47
NCAAF Headline News

 GREELEY, Colo. (AP) -A witness in the trial of a college football player accused of stabbing a teammate took the stand Friday and denied a defense lawyer's allegation that it was the witness, not Mitch Cozad, who was the attacker.
Asked by the prosecutor if he stabbed Northern Colorado punter Rafael Mendoza, Kevin Aussprung said loudly, ``No, I did not.''
Aussprung testified in the trial of Cozad, a former backup punter at Northern Colorado who is charged with attempted first-degree murder and second-degree assault in a knife attack on Mendoza.
Police and prosecutors say Cozad, of Wheatland, Wyo., attacked Mendoza in a parking lot outside Mendoza's apartment in a bid to take over the starter's job. Mendoza suffered a deep cut in his kicking leg but later returned to the team.
Aussprung has said he was with Cozad that night and that Cozad offered him money to watch his car. Earlier in the trial, defense attorney Joseph Gavaldon claimed it was Aussprung who stabbed Mendoza.
Aussprung's attorney denied the allegation in an interview this week, but Friday was Aussprung's first opportunity to respond in court.
He testified he was ``scared for my life'' after the trip with Cozad.
Aussprung said Cozad left the car after they got to the parking lot and after a time ran back, saying, ``We have to get out of here.''
``He seemed like he was in a hurry and that something went wrong with whatever he was doing,'' Aussprung said.
 

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