A starting football player for the University of Utah and a former all-Western Athletic Conference defensive player also from the U. have each been charged with two counts of assault.
Todd Eldredge, a starting offensive lineman, and Filipo Mokofisi, a 6-foot-1-inch, 235-pound defensive end for the Utes from 1982 to 1985, were named in a complaint filed Tuesday in 5th Circuit Court. Each was charged with a Class B and a Class C misdemeanor punishable by a $1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.Prosecutors said the victim suffered broken ribs and was beaten and kicked repeatedly about the head but did not suffer injuries serious enough to warrant felony assault charges.
Alan Wright said he was attacked by three men as he was leaving a Salt Lake club. Two men rushed at him from opposite directions, smashing Wright between them and crushing his ribs. The victim, who was then helpless to defend himself, was allegedly dragged into a parking lot where three men beat and kicked him repeatedly.
"There was no fight about it," said Wright. "It was a well-executed ambush. If I fight someone one-on-one and lose I don't complain about it. But this was different."
The assault apparently stemmed from an altercation between Wright and Eldredge a week before at the same club.
Mokofisi was named WAC Tri-Defensive Player of the Year in 1984 and was an honorable mention all-American. The former East High player was drafted by New Orleans Saints in 1986.
Eldredge, a 6-4, 250-pound offensive lineman from Los Angeles, was a starter last year for the Utes. He missed the 1987 season with a knee injury. Eldredge was an all-CIF player in high school and was named a San Gabriel Valley Hall of Fame Scholar-Athlete.
Ute Coach Jim Fassel said he couldn't comment on the charges. "I deal with individual cases as they come up. I don't know what to say to you right now. I really don't make any comments until I find out all the facts."