JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Former University of Central Florida and University Christian football star Otis Anderson Jr., 23, died in a double shooting Monday night that also left his mother hospitalized — neighbors, former teammates and UCF leaders said Tuesday.
According to a police report, officers were dispatched to the residence in the Forest Trails area where they found Anderson Jr. suffering from a gunshot wound to his chest. Investigators said a second person, identified as Denise Anderson -- Anderson Jr.’s mother -- was suffering from multiple graze wounds and hospitalized.
Anderson Jr. died at the scene. Police said his mother was later discharged from the hospital.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, Denise Anderson told police her husband, Otis Lee Anderson Sr., was bitten by their son’s girlfriend’s dog. She said it made Anderson Sr. upset, and that when their son, Anderson Jr., came downstairs to see what happened, an argument started.
Denise Anderson told police Anderson Jr. was told to go back upstairs and that she and Anderson Sr. continued an argument. She said her husband flipped the downstairs recliner, which led to her son coming back downstairs.
Denise Anderson told investigators her son and husband got into another argument and looked as though they were going to fight. She said they separated, but Anderson Jr. and Sr. then met back inside the kitchen.
The next part of the police report is redacted, but it notes Anderson Jr. appeared to have been shot in his chest and back.
Anderson Sr. was booked into the Duval County jail and appeared in front of a judge Tuesday afternoon. The report notes that he’s facing charges of murder and attempted murder.
The judge said they found probable cause on both charges and appointed the Public Defender’s office to represent him. Anderson Sr. will be held on no bond and his next court appearance was set for Dec. 22.
Jacksonville Sheriff Mike Williams issued the following statement:
“The men and women of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office join me in mourning with the Anderson family as they deal with last night’s incredible tragedy. While the investigation continues to be carried out, we would encourage everyone to keep the family in your prayers as they work through this very difficult time.”
After leaving UCF, Anderson Jr. was briefly a member of the Los Angels Rams this season. Anderson Jr. spent training camp with the Rams after going undrafted in the 2021 NFL Draft but was cut from the practice squad in September, according to CBS Sports.
Anderson Jr. played college football at UCF where he was a big play waiting to happen. He finished his career with 2,182 rushing yards and 17 rushing touchdowns. Anderson had 1,025 yards and nine receiving touchdowns.
“Being an actual football player, that might bring tears to my eyes the first time,” he told News4JAX earlier this year.
Fans, reporters, friends and former teammates were devastated after news of his death spread on social media Tuesday morning.
Thank you Marc. My brief interaction with him was special - he cared very deeply for UCF. I’m hopeful that all who knew him can somehow find peace, especially his teammates. https://t.co/NnQEivTswG— Terry Mohajir (@TerryMohajirAD) November 30, 2021
Otis Anderson Jr. had a smile that would light up a room. It was so much fun talking with this young man during his time at #UCF. I’m stunned by the news today. Thoughts are with his family and friends.— Matt Murschel (@osmattmurschel) November 30, 2021
She is my Sister and my heart is DESTROYED for her there are not enough words that can even be spoken to understand losing your only son I love you @nymzdee 💔🙏🏾‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️💙 pic.twitter.com/rQfz5AAy5u— DSnelsonMom-UCFMOMFOREVER‼️ (@Mia8753) November 30, 2021
Such heartbreaking news to wake up to this morning about former @UCF_Football and @UCChristians football star Otis Anderson Jr. Great kid. So many stories about him signing autographs for people at UCF, encouraging kids, etc. Was a stud at UC and even better in college. pic.twitter.com/aIUmUKOwo8— Justin Barney (@JustinBarneyTV) November 30, 2021
I loss one of my closest friends last night, I am not okay.— Kelton Jordan Johnson (@3rdJohnsonboy) November 30, 2021
Editor’s Note: Neither Anderson is connected to Ottis Anderson, the MVP of Super Bowl XXV in 1991 when playing with the New York Giants who played college football at the University of Miami.