COC confirms two players arrested on suspicion of aggravated assault

The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station
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Two players from the 2019 College of the Canyons football team were arrested on suspicion of aggravated assault following a recent incident in Stevenson Ranch.

Both Joshua Lee, 22, of Valencia, and Joseph Howard, 20, of Valencia, were linked by Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station deputies to an alleged fight that occurred Jan. 20.

Deputies first received the call on the day of the incident around 2:30 p.m. on the 24900 block of Pico Canyon Road.

“The victim engaged other occupants of the location in a couple of arguments,” said sheriff’s Lt. Ignacio Somoano.

Deputies believe that a total of three suspects, with Lee and Howard suspected to be two of the three, then began to physically punch and strike the victim.

“The victim suffered a significant injury during the assault,” said Somoano. “(Career Offenders, Burglary, and Robbery Apprehension Team, or COBRA) detectives handled the investigation and identified the three suspects.”

The third suspect has not yet been named, and has not yet been located by Sheriff’s Station deputies.

COC officials confirmed Wednesday that Lee and Howard were both members of the 2019 Cougar football team. Officials declined to confirm whether the third suspect had been on the team, citing the fact that the name had not yet been released by officials and the investigation remained ongoing.

Howard was listed on the team’s roster as a freshman wide receiver from North Little Rock, Arkansas. Lee was listed as a freshman linebacker from Newark, New Jersey.

Both Lee and Howard were arrested Jan. 31 on suspicion of felonious aggravated assault and held in lieu of $30,000 bail.

They were both released on bond the next day, according to the Sheriff’s Department arrest logs.

COC officials said Wednesday that any disciplinary actions through the school are confidential, and they are working with the Sheriff’s Department throughout the investigation.

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