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Blue Jays prospect Alford arrested for assault

TORONTO -- Blue Jays prospect Anthony Alford was arrested on Wednesday afternoon and charged with aggravated assault for allegedly using a weapon in a threatening manner.

Alford was taken into custody by police at the University of Southern Mississippi, where he is a student and a quarterback of the Golden Eagles football team.

The 18-year-old Alford was identified by police as a "principal in the incident" and was arrested along with one other individual. The police action followed a fight which reportedly broke out on campus around 11 a.m., according to campus newspaper The Student Printz.

"As calls continued to come in, it developed into an issue where an individual apparently drew a weapon and made some threats," university police Chief Bob Hopkins told the newspaper, adding no one had been hurt. "[The altercation] seems to be a simmering problem that's been going on for a few weeks."

Both suspects are now on interim suspensions, and as of Wednesday night, they were being held in prison without bail. One suspect reportedly saw a gun being removed from a vehicle, while another gun was found in a nearby car. The Blue Jays have yet to publicly comment on the situation.

Alford was one of the most sought-after prospects in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft. But his stock eventually dropped to the third round because of his stated desire to play NCAA football.

Toronto opted to take a chance on the two-sport star and ultimately rewarded him with a lucrative signing bonus. Alford joined the Blue Jays' Minor League system for a brief time during the summer before eventually heading to Southern Mississippi to fulfill his football obligations.

Alford becomes the second recent draftee by the Blue Jays to find himself in hot water in the past several months. First-round Draft pick Marcus Stroman received a 50-game suspension in September after testing positive for a banned substance.

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB.
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