October 21, 2014

Medina
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Accused athlete taken off team

AKRON — A University of Akron football player accused of robbing a Brunswick tobacco pipe store at gunpoint has been suspended from the team.

Seth Cunningham, 21, of 3175 Central Park Lane, Montville Township, was charged with aggravated robbery.

He was arrested Monday morning by Brunswick police and was released from the Medina County Jail after posting 10 percent of a $30,000 bond Wednesday.

Gregg Bach, a university athletics department spokesman, said the suspension was automatic because the arrest was a violation of the school’s code of conduct for student athletes.

“This is our standard policy,” he said.

Bach said if Cunningham is convicted, he will be barred from competing for the school.

Cunningham is on a scholarship at the university, he said.

Brunswick police spokesman Nick Solar said Cunningham entered the 24-hour Twilight Boutique, 1789 Pearl Road, Brunswick, just after midnight Monday, armed with a 9mm handgun.

Cunningham took a $447 water pipe from a display case, Solar said.

Officers reported they found Cunningham with the gun and pipe in a black pickup.

Cunningham has no previous record in Medina or Summit county municipal or common pleas courts.

He’s set for a preliminary hearing at 10:10 a.m. Wednesday before Medina Municipal Judge Dale H. Chase. Cunningham has retained Medina attorney Gerald Piszeczek to represent him.

Piszeczek did not return calls seeking comment Friday.

Cunningham graduated from St. Edward High School, where he was a football and track star.

He set the St. Edward records in 100- and 200-meter sprinting and was the Division I indoor champion in 2009. He was a regional champion as a junior and qualified for state, but couldn’t run in the finals because of an injury.

According to the University of Akron athletics website, Cunningham played in eight games in 2011 as a sophomore and nine games last year.

Contact reporter Nick Glunt at (330) 721-4048 or nglunt@medina-gazette.com.