Former NFL Wide Receiver Sentenced to 3 to 10 Years After Fatal DUI

ABC News reports that Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs III has been sentenced to prison for 3 to 10 years for his role in a deadly crash in Las Vegas in 2021. 

In May of this year, Ruggs pleaded guilty to one felony count of driving under the influence of alcohol, resulting in death, and a misdemeanor charge of vehicular manslaughter for his role in a crash in November 2021 that killed a 23-year-old woman and her dog.

Other lesser charges were dropped in exchange for Ruggs’ guilty plea.

According to court documents submitted by the Clark County District Attorney’s Office, Ruggs had been driving 156 miles per hour when he slammed his Corvette into the rear end of a Toyota Rav 4. The impact force caused the Toyota to burst into flame, trapping the young woman and her dog inside.

Ruggs failed field sobriety tests administered by Las Vegas Metro Police officers, and a breathalyzer test revealed that he had a blood-alcohol level of 0.161 percent – more than twice the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

Clark County District Court Judge Jennifer Schwartz said it was one of the most tragic cases she had ever seen. Judge Schwartz passed sentence on Ruggs and said that Ruggs would be eligible for parole in three years as outlined in the defendant’s plea agreement.

Ruggs was allowed to address the court just before his sentence on Wednesday. He told the family of his victim that for the past 21 months, he had been searching to find answers for his selfish behavior on that horrible day.

“I have no excuse and pray that accepting responsibility and my guilty plea can allow me to begin the healing process and allow everyone involved to heal also,’ Ruggs told the court.

The former NFL player also told the court that he is now committed to “creating greater awareness” about the dangers of driving while impaired and at excessive speeds.

Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson addressed reporters immediately following the sentencing. “This resolution sends Ruggs to prison for up to 10 years on a felony DUI and brings closure to the family,’ the DA said. 

Ruggs was released by the Las Vegas Raiders team just hours after the fatal crash.

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