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Luke Apfeld has given his verbal to the University of Vermont to play basketball as a member of the 2009 recruiting class. He joins big man Ben Crenca as part of another stellar Mike Lonergan recruiting class.

Outrage Over Serbian Student's Alleged Upstate Attack PDF Print E-mail
Written by VT Sports Network News Feed   
Sunday, 29 June 2008

2008_06_miladan.jpgOver the past week, American officials have questioned why a Serbian student at Binghamton University was allowed to flee the country, while he charged with beating up another student into a coma. Today, the Serbian Consul General Slobodan Nenedovic tells the Post, "I will think about resigning, absolutely."

On May 4, Miladin Kovacevic (pictured), a basketball player at 6' 9" and 260 pounds, allegedly beat up Bryan Steinhauer (5'6" and 135 pounds), thinking Steinhauer groped a friend's girlfriend at a bar. Though the girlfriend said she wasn't touched, Kovacevic reportedly attacked and Steinhauer, a Brooklyn resident, suffered shattered cheeks and a fractured skull and remains in critical condition.

Serbian vice consul general Igor Milosevic put up $100,000 cash bail (upstate law enforcement says they thought it was a big amount for upstate) for Kovacevic in early June, and the 20-year-old fled the country with an emergency passport, since he had already surrendered his regular one. Senator Charles Schumer has asked that Kovacevic be extradited, noting the U.S.'s extradition treaty with Serbia and how the "federal law enforcement must now step in and do everything in its power to bring justice to the Steinhauer family as quickly as possible."

However, there's confusion about whether Serbian officials want to extradite Kovacevic; consul general Nenecovic said to the Post, "I'm not quite sure if Serbia has an extradition policy, but I am sure that Kovacevic will be faced with prosecution in Serbia." The Daily News' Michael Daly suggests cutting off Serbian funding if their officials don't send the accused back to face charges upstate.

Kovacevic's parents spoke to the Post and his father said, "We feel he is a victim of small-town values ganging up against a foreigner. He was targeted because he was Serb and a very large man." And a family friend told the Daily News Kovacevic was defending himself. In the meantime, Steinhauer's mother says her son is "slowing emerging from his coma."

CLICK HERE for Gothamist article. 

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Simeon Marsalis



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