Brown athlete remains critical after assault

A Brown University basketball player from Norwood, Mass., remained in critical condition Tuesday after suffering what police described as severe head injuries in a weekend assault. A spokeswoman for Rhode Island Hospital said that Joseph Sharkey, 21, is still critical. Providence police said a man came up to Sharkey early Sunday morning while he was talking to a group of women around Thayer and George streets on the East Side and hit him. Authorities initially said the attack appeared unprovoked, but Deputy Chief Thomas Oates said Tuesday that some kind of altercation took place shortly before the attack.