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Former WNBA All-Star Shoni Schimmel Pleads Not Guilty to Strangulation Charge

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIApril 16, 2022

AP Photo/Jessica Hill, File

Warning: Contains details of domestic assault.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Oregon revealed Friday that former WNBA All-Star Shoni Schimmel has been charged with assault by strangulation of an intimate dating partner and assault resulting in substantial bodily injury.

The news came via a federal indictment, which was unsealed on Friday. The alleged assault reportedly took place at the Umatilla Indian Reservation on June 13, 2021. Schimmel is said to have strangled her dating partner before further assaulting the person to create the substantial bodily injury. 

Federal authorities arrested Schimmel on Friday. She appeared in federal court, pleaded not guilty and was released. A two-day jury trial is set to begin on June 14.

Schimmel will face a 15-year maximum sentence in federal prison if convicted. That would be in addition to three years’ supervised release and a $250,000 fine.

According to the Associated Press (h/t KCBY CBS 11), Schimmel was arrested on June 15, 2021 and held in Oregon jail "on multiple charges including felony assault and criminal mischief." 

"The Sheriff’s Office website also lists several misdemeanor charges including domestic abuse, menacing, reckless endangerment and harassment," per the AP report.

Per ESPN.com's Mechelle Voepel, the 29-year-old Schimmel grew up on the Umatilla Reservation in Oregon.

Schimmel played college ball at the University of Louisville. The AP named Schimmel as a second-team All-American in 2014.

The Atlanta Dream selected Schimmel No. 8 overall in the 2014 WNBA draft. She made the All-Star Game in each of her first two years and won the contest's MVP award in 2014 with a then-record 29 points.

Per Voepel, the Dream traded Schimmel to the New York Liberty in 2016. She suffered a season-ending concussion after playing 17 games.

Schimmel did not take part in the 2017 season due to personal reasons. She caught back on with the Liberty in 2018, but New York waived her in training camp. Schimmel's WNBA career ended after playing two games with the Las Vegas Aces in 2018 before her release.

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