Man charged in soccer star’s death

/ Source: The Associated Press

A man was charged Tuesday with fatally shooting University of Nebraska soccer star Jenna Cooper during a party celebrating the end of the spring soccer season.

Cooper, a 21-year-old junior from Louisville, Ky., died Sunday night after being shot in the throat when an argument broke out at the party. Police said the bullet apparently was aimed at another student who was standing a few feet away.

Lucky Iromuanya, 22, was charged with second-degree murder, attempted second-degree murder and using a weapon to commit a felony. Bail was set at $1 million.

Lancaster County public defender Webb Bancroft planned to seek a bail reduction in the next week.

“He’s lived in Lincoln his whole life,” Bancroft said. “He’s got no significant criminal record.”

If convicted, Iromuanya faces 20 years to life in prison on the second-degree murder charge. Attempted second-degree murder is punishable by up to 50 years.

Cooper was a three-year starter for the Cornhuskers and one of the top defenders in the Big 12 Conference. She played on the U.S. Under-21 National Team in 2002.

Tuesday night, more than 500 mourners attended a memorial service for Cooper at the university. “We know she’s in heaven shooting 60 mph shots at some unsuspecting goalkeeper,” soccer coach John Walker said.