A lawyer for the man accused of killing Joe McKnight says his client shot the former NFL running back in self-defense.

In an email sent to The Associated Press late Thursday, Matthew Goetz wrote that “information provided from our sources” indicate the 28-year-old McKnight was shot while threatening 55-year-old Ronald Gasser and trying to climb into Gasser’s car through the passenger-side window. He did not elaborate on the sources or immediately return a phone call Friday.

RELATED: Two dead in reported shooting during Thanksgiving Day youth football game

Gasser was charged Wednesday with second-degree murder, which carries a mandatory life sentence.

Authorities have said both men were driving erratically and yelling at each other before they stopped.

Goetz says McKnight drove from behind Gasser’s vehicle and blocked him in.

McKnight played for the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs.

Associated Press