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Published: Tuesday, 10/2/2012

Former OSU star charged in shooting

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ASSOCIATED PRESS

COLUMBUS — Former Ohio State football star Jim Stillwagon is suspected of shooting at a pickup on a highway ramp and later striking the driver with a handgun, causing it to fire a bullet that grazed the man’s head, after a road-rage incident that spanned about 14 miles, police said Monday.

The college Hall of Famer — a defensive tackle who helped the Buckeyes to a national championship in 1968 — was jailed on a felonious assault charge and had bond set at $350,000 in municipal court in Delaware, Ohio.

The Sunday-afternoon altercation between the truck driver and Mr. Stillwagon, 63, who was on a motorcycle, might have started when one driver cut off the other, police said.

They said Mr. Stillwagon fired shots at the pickup, which turned into a parking area near a car parts store, across the street from some homes. 

Mr. Stillwagon then confronted the 41-year-old truck driver and struck him with the handgun, said Bruce Pijanowski, the interim police chief in Delaware.

There was no indication Mr. Stillwagon knew the injured man, who was treated at a hospital and checked himself out Sunday night, he said.

“Considering the circumstances, he’s extremely lucky,” Chief Pijanowski said.

“He had probably just superficial injuries, and it could have been a lot worse.”

Mr. Stillwagon had a permit and was legally carrying the gun, the chief said.

The former Ohio State defender was a three-year starter for Coach Woody Hayes from 1968 to 1970, when the Buckeyes had three Big Ten titles in addition to their national championship.

Mr. Stillwagon was an All-American as a junior and senior and won the Outland and Lombardi awards, given to the dominant interior lineman in the country. 

He was drafted by the Green Bay Packers but instead went to the Canadian Football League, where he played for the Toronto Argonauts through the 1975 season.

A preliminary hearing in his assault case is scheduled for Oct. 10.



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