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Utah football player Aaron Lowe killed in Sunday morning shooting

Small memorials for Sophomore defensive back Aaron Lowe, who was shot and killed early Sunday morning have been placed at two locations, one at the scene of the shooting and the other at the Spence and Cleone Eccles Football Center at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City on Sunday. (Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)


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SALT LAKE CITY β€” University of Utah football player Aaron Lowe died Sunday after he was shot at a house party.

Lowe, 21, who was a sophomore defensive back for the Utes, was shot at a residence near 2200 South and Broadmoor Street (2625 East) in a Sugar House neighborhood Sunday. Another individual, a woman, was critically injured in the overnight shooting and transported to the hospital in critical condition, according to Salt Lake City Police Chief Mike Brown.

Officers initially received reports of a noise complaint at a house party in the area around 10:30 p.m. Saturday night. But officers never arrived at the house due to other calls that were more pressing at the time, Salt Lake police spokesman Brent Weisberg said.

Officers were later called to the home around 12:20 a.m. Sunday on a reported fight with a weapon, according to Brown. Police were already in the area when another neighbor reported multiple gunshots. When officers arrived they found Lowe and a woman shot outside of the residence, Weisberg said. Medical personnel gave immediate aid to the two, but Lowe died at the scene.

The incident began when multiple individuals appeared at a "relatively small" party that Lowe and the woman were invited to and attending. The individuals were asked to leave, as they were not invited guests, and a fight ensued, Weisberg said. At some point, Lowe and the woman were shot.

Police said they do not know how many shots were fired or what led to Lowe and the woman being shot. It's unknown if other football players were at the party or the relationship between Lowe and the woman.

Brown said several people attending the house party witnessed the events and likely "several of those individuals have photos and videos that could be instrumental to solving this homicide." Police believe several witnesses left the scene due to the "chaotic" nature, and they're asking anyone with information to contact authorities.

Officials continue to investigate the incident and have interviewed several witnesses to the shooting.

"I am deeply saddened by the shooting death of Aaron Lowe," Brown said. "This talented young man touched the lives of so many here in Salt Lake City and in Texas. The Salt Lake City Police Department grieves with and offers our condolences to the Lowe family and the University of Utah community. Our condolences also extend to the other person injured in this shooting. I hope for their quick recovery.

"These investigations are complex. Our detectives have been hard at work trying to identify the suspect or suspects in this case."

No arrests have been made in the case.

Utah football head coach Kyle Whittingham said he was "devastated" to hear the news of Lowe.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with Aaron's family and friends, along with the other individual who was harmed in this tragic incident," he said in a statement. "Aaron was a great teammate, friend, brother and son and was loved by anyone who crossed paths with him. He will be deeply missed."

Athletic Director Mark Harlan added that the university has been in contact with Lowe's family and are "providing support to them, as well as to the student-athletes, coaches and staff in all of our athletic programs, and our focus will remain on them."

"Aaron was a terrific young man, a leader on our football team, and a rock of resiliency and courage," Harlan said. "Our prayers are with Aaron's family, friends, teammates and all who knew and loved him. We also express our deepest concern for the other individual who has been hospitalized as a result of this tragic incident."

The incident comes nearly a year after Utah lost its star running back Ty Jordan to a self-inflicted accidental shooting in Texas. Lowe, who was high school teammates with Jordan, dedicated the season to his friend by switching his jersey number from No. 2 to No. 22 in his memory.

Lowe was one of the players that convinced Jordan to play for the Utes after he decommitted from Texas.

"It was his personality that influenced me," Lowe said earlier this year. "I had someone in him β€” someone who came from where I came from. It is because of him that I changed to No. 22. The impact you left on me and all of your friends, that will be something we will never forget."

Prior to the start of the 2021 football season, Lowe was a natural fit to be awarded the first recipient of the Ty Jordan Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship was awarded by the team's leadership council.

"Ty made everyone around him better," Lowe said at the time. "He made me better. My friendship with Ty means a lot because he was always pushing me to be my best. He never let me settle for less. I want to make sure his legacy lives on through me."

The news of his death was shared on social media by his teammates, who are still grieving after last year's tragic loss. The news comes as Utah enters its bye week ahead of a road contest against USC on Oct. 9.

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