The outside linebacker who punched New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith during a locker room dispute missed his college team's 2011 season opener because he injured his hand punching a man he thought was a woman with whom he had arranged to have sex, Outside the Lines has learned.
IK Enemkpali, who was cut by the Jets after the Smith incident and is now with the Buffalo Bills, needed surgery after the 2011 incident and missed Louisiana Tech's opener against Southern Mississippi. He had been suspended before the start of that season for striking an off-duty sheriff's officer at a bar in Ruston, Louisiana, five months earlier, for which he was charged with battery on an officer and disturbing the peace.
The details of Enemkpali punching the man he thought was a woman are outlined in a police report obtained by Outside the Lines. Enemkpali was not charged in the incident and actually made the complaint to police after the man demanded money from him.
NFL sources said the incident -- and what it showed about Enemkpali's decision-making skills -- prompted at least one AFC team to take him off its draft board. And it was among the reasons multiple other teams were dissuaded from drafting him. One team, sources said, noted in its scouting report that Enemkpali "puts himself in bad situations."
According to the police report, on Sept. 1, 2011, Enemkpali began exchanging messages with a new Facebook friend named "Missy Lee," who offered to perform oral sex on Enemkpali if he would come over to her house. He told police that after he entered the house through a side door, he saw a figure inside "covered head-to-toe in a blanket," and the person would not remove the blanket. "Enemkpali stated that he felt uneasy about the situation, so he left," the report states.
But Enemkpali returned to the house after "Missy Lee" called him and convinced him to come back. When he arrived, the person wearing the blanket still refused to remove it and refused to turn on the lights. When a cellphone in the room rang, "the screen lit up the room enough to see that the person under the blanket had facial hair," the report states. Enemkpali said another person had also entered the room.
"Enemkpali stated that he felt that he was being 'set up' for a robbery of some type," the police report states. "Enemkpali stated that fearing for his safety, he then struck the subject in the blanket. Enemkpali stated that after he struck this person, their voice changed to that of a male. Enemkpali stated that he then left the residence through the window."
Enemkpali told police he started receiving threatening texts in which "Missy Lee" accused him of punching her and knocking out her teeth. "U are going to jail," read one of the texts. He offered $500, but "Missy Lee" demanded $1,000 or the police would be called. "He [Enemkpali] would be 'finished' if that happened." The texts were followed by phone calls from someone claiming to be the father of "Missy Lee" and demanding payment.
Enemkpali reported the incident to police three days after it happened.
Enemkpali's agent declined comment to Outside the Lines. The Bills did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Police traced the phone numbers to a man named Ketryn Anderson, who initially lied to police but eventually admitted to reaching out to Enemkpali via Facebook and later posing as the father of "Missy Lee" on the phone, the report states. He denied hiding under a blanket but did say he refused to turn on the lights. Anderson "stated that he was not attempting to extort money from Enemkpali, only to get him to pay for the damage he had done to his face." The officer noted Anderson was missing two front teeth.
Anderson, 34, declined comment to Outside the Lines when reached Tuesday, saying he would not talk about the incident unless ESPN paid him. He is listed on Facebook as a senior pastor and founder of Life Community Church in Shreveport, Louisiana.
Ruston Deputy Chief of Police Clint Williams, who handled the case in 2011, said he didn't know what prompted Anderson to lure Enemkpali to the house.
Williams wrote in the report that he believed "Anderson was attempting to use Enemkpali's prior criminal history and tenuous status with the Louisiana Tech football team as leverage to force him to pay money." He cited two factors: Had the incident occurred as Anderson described, he would have likely reported it to police, and he told his mother that the injuries to his mouth were from a traffic crash. Williams wrote that Anderson's efforts to get money for his injuries "are at best immoral, and at worst criminal."
The officer contacted Enemkpali and then-head coach Sonny Dykes with the results of his investigation. But Enemkpali declined to press charges, and police did not pursue the case further. Police said Anderson did not try to pursue charges against Enemkpali for the injuries he sustained.
Enemkpali, the Jets' sixth-round draft pick in 2014, was released after the Aug. 11 incident with Smith, which stemmed from a dispute over $600. The Bills picked him up the next day.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said Wednesday that "the matter remains under review."