NFL Star Had Girlfriend Killed. 17 Years Later, He Speaks

Rae Carruth breaks his silence, expresses desire to have custody of his son
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2018 8:08 AM CST
Updated Feb 24, 2018 5:30 PM CST
This Jan. 3, 2001, file photo shows former Carolina Panthers football player Rae Carruth sitting at the defense table during his trial in Charlotte, NC.   (AP Photo/Jeff Siner, Pool, File)

(Newser) – He was a star Carolina Panthers wide-receiver who was found hiding in the trunk of a car in a Tennessee hotel parking lot in December 1999 and arrested for having a hit put on his 7-months-pregnant girlfriend. Cherica Adams, 24, died nearly a month after being struck by four bullets while driving; police said Rae Carruth didn't want to pay child support and was angered Adams wouldn't get an abortion. He was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder among other charges. Now, after some 17 years in prison and with an impending Oct. 22 release date, Carruth, 44, is speaking out about that child—who survived.

  • The interview: WBTV, which received a 15-page handwritten open letter to Adams' mother from Carruth and then interviewed him by phone, points out what a rarity these words are: He didn't testify on his behalf, and has previously granted only one interview, in 2001 to CNN.

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