Ex-Raiders receiver pleads guilty over deadly 2021 crash
Former Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs III faces up to 10 years in jail after striking a plea deal on Wednesday to charges stemming from a 2021 drink-driving car crash that left a woman dead, prosecutors said.
Ruggs pleaded guilty to a charge of driving under the influence resulting in death after admitting he drove while drunk in the November 2021 accident in Las Vegas.
The 24-year-old -- who was sacked by the Raiders soon after the crash -- was speeding at 156 miles per hour (251 kilometers per hour) when his Corvette sports car slammed into a vehicle driven by Tina Tintor, 23.
Tintor and her pet dog died from thermal injuries after her vehicle was engulfed in flames following the crash.
Ruggs was transported to hospital following the accident, where a blood sample revealed he was more than two times over the limit.
Ruggs was subsequently hit with multiple charges which could have resulted in a prison sentence of up to 50 years, according to reports.
However prosecutors accepted a plea deal amid concerns that evidence from the blood sample might be ruled inadmissible by the court if the case went to trial.
Ruggs' attorneys had filed a motion arguing there was insufficient probable cause for a judge to grant police officers a request for the blood sample on the night of the accident.
Clark County District Attorney Steven Wolfson said in a statement said if the motion was successful -- an outcome deemed likely after the failure to carry out roadside sobriety tests on Ruggs -- the only charge Ruggs would have faced was felony reckless driving, which carries a maximum sentence of six years.
"I recognize this outcome is not sufficient to punish Ruggs for the loss the Tintor family has suffered, but there was a legitimate concern that a court would have suppressed the result of the blood draw," Wolfson said.
"We couldn't take that chance. This resolution sends Ruggs to prison for up to 10 years on a felony DUI conviction and brings closure to the Tintor family."
Wolfson said the deal achieved the three main objectives for the prosecution -- securing a conviction, sending Ruggs to prison, and eliminating his ability to appeal conviction and his sentence.
Ruggs will be sentenced on August 9.