Peru State Basketball Player Charged With Hiding Knife In Auburn

AUBURN – Nemaha County Attorney Louie Ligouri has filed a tampering with evidence charge against a Peru State basketball player following a Sept. 17 stabbing incident near the campus.

William Benjamin, 23, of Brooklyn, N.Y., is scheduled for preliminary hearing in Nemaha County court on Nov. 10. He is accused of hiding a knife that had been at the scene of what 9-1-1 callers described as a fight between Peru State football and basketball players.

Three athletes were injured, Larry Hodnett, Elijah Lavalais-Hawkins and Anthony Hemingway. Former basketball player Jeffland Neverson, 24, is charged with assault and use of a weapon to commit a felony involving injuries to one of the students.

Court records say the Nebraska State Patrol learned that the knife was placed in a brown paper bag and put in the storm sewer drain near the Great China Buffet in Auburn. Williams is suspected of dropping the knife, along with a white tank top, in the drain on Sept. 18, but Williams initially told investigators it was someone else.

Williams was listed in August among the college’s 2016-17 recruits, but was not listed on a recent team roster.

Peru State’s men’s basketball team had a 22-11 record last year, the most wins in a single season in over 20 years.