Former Penn Players Testify


Former Penn Players Testify



The Sun Editor


Two former William Penn basketball players took the stand as the trial of Luke Ryan VanHemert, 24, the man charged with second-degree murder of William Penn student and player Marquis Todd. Mikeal Donaldson and D’Angelo Allen took the stand Wednesday morning.

Much of Donaldson and Allen’s testimony related to the events that occurred at 603 N. Third St. in Oskaloosa at approximately 10 p.m. on March 1, 2018. The address is the home of VanHemert. Testimony revealed the confrontation that occurred that night resulted from a minor collision.

Donaldson told prosecutor Andrew Prosser that they were playing video games in Todd’s room in the Twin Towers at the university on the night of the incident. Donaldson decided to drive to the Jiffy Mart, 315 A Avenue East, and pick up snacks and something to drink. He said left Penn traveling south on Market to K Avenue East then turned south on North Third.

“I was behind a jeep that was going about 10 miles per hour so I went around it an they cut me off,” said Donaldson. “I moved back over and they slowed down so I tried to go around them again and they cut me off again.”

Prosser asked him what he did next and he said he backed up the street for about a block and did a 3-point turn and went back to K Avenue, turned the corner and stopped near what is known as Fins ‘n Things.

“My adrenaline was running and just thought maybe they would be gone,” said Donaldson.

He said he turned around and went back to Third Street heading to Jiffy Mart. As he went up the street near 603 North Third he said, “Someone threw a rock at my windshield then the defendant hit the window with a pole.”

Photos were shown with a large hole in the passenger side of the windshield and a large crack on the driver’s side. Donaldson said he made another 3-point turn and returned to campus where he told Todd and Allen of the incident. The three got into Donaldson’s car and returned to North Third looking for the silver Jeep.

“I went back to dorm to get Marquis and DA and planned to go back and see who was going to pay for my car,” said Donaldson. “There was an older guy (Stanley VanHemert) out there and I asked who was going to pay for my car and he walked away.”

Donaldson went on to say Todd then asked the older man where he was going and what he was doing.

“He had a phone is his hand, but no weapon,” Donaldson emphasized.

He also stated he, Todd and Allen had no weapons nor had any in the car. He sated no when both Prosser and defense attorney Allen Cook III asked if they had tossed any out.

Donaldson and Allen both said they saw Todd and Ryan VanHemert scuffling and Todd was on top then got up and yelled, “I got tased. I got tased.” Donaldson and Allen helped Todd to the car and said he was making snoring noises then passed out. They put him in the backseat and left the residence headed south.

“The cops turned on their lights and I pulled into the Jiffy,” said Donaldson.

Both Donaldson and Allen related that was where police pointed guns at them, searched for weapons and began asking questions. It was also at the Jiffy they learned that Todd had died of his injuries.




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