Las Vegas, NV – The Las Vegas Raiders released wide receiver Henry Ruggs III on Tuesday night after he was arrested on multiple felony charges for killing a 23-year-old woman while allegedly driving more than 150 mph while under the influence early that morning.
The incident occurred at about 3:40 a.m. on Nov. 2 when the 22-year-old Ruggs slammed his Chevrolet Corvette into the back of a Toyota Rav4 at the intersection of Rainbow Boulevard and Spring Valley Parkway, ESPN reported.
The SUV Ruggs smashed into burst out in flames and the woman who was driving, and her dog, were killed in the blaze.
Firefighters rushed to the scene and put out the fire but couldn’t save the 23 year old and her pet, according to KTNV.
Ruggs and his girlfriend, Kiara Je’nai Kilgo-Washington, were also injured in the wreck.
Kilgo-Washington sustained seriously injuries, KTNV reported.
Ruggs sustained non-life-threatening injuries in the crash.
Court documents showed that the football player was arrested and charged with driving under the influence of alcohol resulting in death and reckless driving, ESPN reported.
He was booked into the Clark County Detention Center after he was released from the hospital.
Clark County Chief Deputy District Attorney Eric Bauman said Ruggs was going 156 mph about two seconds before the crash, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
Investigators determined the Corvette was traveling at 127 mph when the airbags were triggered to deploy.
“I cannot recall a speed that high in my career on the bench,” Justice of the Peace Joe Bonaventure said during Ruggs’ first court appearance on Wednesday, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Bauman said that Ruggs’ blood alcohol level was .16 percent, or twice the legal limit.
The prosecutor also said that officers had recovered a loaded gun the driver’s side floorboard of the car, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
Bonaventure ordered the football player held on a $150,000 bail.
“This is a very tragic and sad day in this community,” Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson told reporters after the hearing. “A woman lost her life. Another person perhaps lost his career, perhaps [is] going to prison. This was a very, very ugly day, yesterday morning.”
Wolfson said Ruggs could face additional felony charges in connection with the injuries his girlfriend suffered in the crash, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
The prosecutor said he could also be charged for possession of a firearm while intoxicated.
Ruggs’ attorneys, David Chesnoff and Richard Schonfeld, asked “everyone to reserve judgment until all the facts are gathered,” ESPN reported.
But the Las Vegas Raiders’ management didn’t wait for more information and released the wide receiver from the team late on Nov. 2.
The team does offer transportation if players shouldn’t drive and it has a player engagement program that warns players of such risks, ESPN reported.
“Our hearts go out to the family and friends of the victim of this horrific tragedy. We will continue to gather facts and monitor the matter under our policies, but our thoughts at this time are with those impacted by this devastating incident,” National Football League (NFL) spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement.
Ruggs is in his second year in the NFL and has made $11.8 million in salary in his career.
The wide receiver has had 50 career catches with the Raiders for 921 yards and an average of 18.4 yards per catch, ESPN reported.
Ruggs played three years of college football at University of Alabama and was a first-round draft choice of the Raiders in 2020.