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Two Iowa State Athletes Shot by Police During Robbery at Restaurant

April 01, 1989

Two Iowa State athletes were shot by police and charged with first-degree robbery in another run-in with the law by athletes from a Big Eight school.

Sam Mack, 18, and Levin White, 21, were in stable condition at Mary Greeley Medical Center at Ames, Iowa, where they were under guard. Mack was shot once in the hip and once in the leg, and White was shot once in the foot.

Each was being held under $28,750 bond after the Thursday night episode, which followed recent criminal incidents involving athletes at Oklahoma, Colorado and Iowa.

Mack, a sophomore from Phoenix, Ill., was a starting forward on the basketball team. White, a junior from Alta Loma and San Bernardino Valley College, was preparing for his first season as a defensive back after failing to qualify academically to attend USC, which was his first choice among four-year schools.

According to police, the two entered a Burger King that was about to close. One of six employees, Amy Konek, escaped by climbing out a drive-up window and ran to the police department about three blocks away. Police Sgt. Craig Reid said three officers rushed to the restaurant in one car and encountered the two athletes at the door.

"One was armed with a rifle," Reid said. "The officer ordered them to drop the weapon. The one with the rifle raised it at the officer. The other turned to go back into the store, which could have created a hostage situation. That met our requirements for use of deadly force."

The police officers fired with .38-caliber pistols. The two men did not shoot at the officers, Reid said.

Ames Police Chief Dennis Ballantine said that White was carrying the rifle. Mack had a knife.

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