Rae Carruth

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Rae Carruth
Rae Carruth mugshot North Carolina DOC.jpg
Inmate photo of Rae Carruth.
Born(1974-01-20) January 20, 1974 (age 39)
Sacramento, California
OccupationFormer professional football player
Criminal penalty291 months, 25 days (24 years, 3 months, 3 weeks and 4 days)
Criminal statusIn custody
ChildrenRaelondo; Chancellor Lee Adams
Conviction(s)Conspiracy to commit 1st degree murder, shooting into an occupied vehicle, using an instrument to destroy an unborn child
 
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Rae Carruth
Rae Carruth mugshot North Carolina DOC.jpg
Inmate photo of Rae Carruth.
Born(1974-01-20) January 20, 1974 (age 39)
Sacramento, California
OccupationFormer professional football player
Criminal penalty291 months, 25 days (24 years, 3 months, 3 weeks and 4 days)
Criminal statusIn custody
ChildrenRaelondo; Chancellor Lee Adams
Conviction(s)Conspiracy to commit 1st degree murder, shooting into an occupied vehicle, using an instrument to destroy an unborn child
Rae Carruth
No. 83, 84, 86, 89
Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: (1974-01-20) January 20, 1974 (age 39)
Place of birth: Sacramento, California
Career information
College: Colorado
NFL Draft: 1997 / Round: 1 / Pick: 27
Debuted in 1997
Last played in 1999
Career history
Career NFL statistics
Receptions62
Receiving yards804
Touchdowns4
Stats at NFL.com

Rae Lamar Wiggins[1][2] (born January 20, 1974), known as Rae Carruth,[3] is a former American football wide receiver in the NFL for the Carolina Panthers. In 2001, he was found guilty of conspiring to murder the woman who at the time was carrying his child and is serving a prison sentence with an expected release date of 2018.[4]

Biography[edit]

Carruth attended Valley High School in Sacramento, California, and played four seasons at the University of Colorado. He was named a first-team All-America in 1996. His college quarterbacks were future NFL quarterbacks Koy Detmer and Kordell Stewart. He was a first-round draft pick, selected with the 27th pick in the 1997 NFL Draft by the Carolina Panthers, signing a four-year, 3.7-million-dollar deal that included a signing bonus of $1.3 million.[5] His sophomore year at CU his Sacramento girlfriend, Michelle Wright, gave birth to their son Raelondo.[6]

He had a respectable rookie season, starting 14 games. Wearing uniform number 89, he caught 44 passes for 545 yards and four touchdown passes, tied for first among rookie receivers. He was named to the all-rookie team at wide receiver.

He broke his right foot in the opening game of 1998, and did not catch another pass that season due to the injury. He ended the year with four catches for 59 yards (all on opening day). He played in the first six games of the 1999 season, making 14 catches for 200 yards.

Criminal history[edit]

On November 16, 1999, near Carruth's home in Charlotte, North Carolina, Cherica Adams, a real estate agent he had been casually dating, was shot four times by Van Brett Watkins, a night club manager and a friend of Carruth. Adams managed to call 911, and said that Carruth had stopped his vehicle in front of hers, and that another vehicle drove alongside and its passenger had shot her. Carruth then drove away from the scene.[7]

Adams was eight months pregnant with Carruth's child at the time. Soon after her admission to the hospital, she fell into a coma.[7] Doctors saved the child (later named Chancellor Lee Adams) via an emergency Caesarean section; Adams died a month later on December 14.

Carruth went to the police and posted a $3 million bail, on condition that if either Adams or the infant died, he would turn himself in.[7] After Adams died, however, he fled. The Panthers released him a few days later, citing a morals clause in his contract.

Carruth was captured after he was found hiding in the trunk of a car outside a motel in Parkers Crossroads, Tennessee. Also in the trunk was $3,900 cash, bottles of his urine, extra clothes, candy bars and a cell phone.

At trial, prosecutors contended that Carruth hired Watkins and others to murder Adams because of her refusal to abort their unborn child. The defense claimed Carruth had been caught up in a drug deal gone bad--that on the night of the shooting, after refusing to fund the drug deal, Watkins shot Adams after an attempt to ask her about Carruth's whereabouts.[citation needed]

Carruth was found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder, shooting into an occupied vehicle, and using an instrument to destroy an unborn child. He was sentenced to 18 to 24 years in prison. He was found not guilty of first-degree murder, and so was spared the death penalty. He is serving the sentence at Harnett Correctional Institution in Lillington, North Carolina, with a projected release date of Oct. 22, 2018.[8]

The driver of the vehicle used in the murder, Michael Kennedy, pled guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to 11 years and eight months. Kennedy was released in 2011. Watkins pled guilty to charges stemming from the shooting, and was sentenced to a minimum of 40 years and three months.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://webapps6.doc.state.nc.us/opi/viewoffender.do?method=view&offenderID=0712822&searchLastName=carruth&searchFirstName=rae&listurl=pagelistoffendersearchresults&listpage=1
  2. ^ "First-degree Tragedy". CNN. December 27, 1999. 
  3. ^ http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1018022/index.htm First Degree Tragedy To start with, he's not Rae Carruth. Legally he's Rae Lamar Wiggins, his surname coming from the biological father who didn't raise him. Yet, while growing up in a hard-scrabble section of Sacramento, he always went by the last name his mother, Theodry, took on when she married Rae's stepfather. When that marriage broke up, Theodry was left to raise Rae alone.
  4. ^ "NC DOC Offender Public Information". Webapps6.doc.state.nc.us. Retrieved 2010-09-16. 
  5. ^ http://thestacks.deadspin.com/rae-carruth-the-women-who-loved-him-and-the-one-he-wa-747347792
  6. ^ http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1018022/
  7. ^ a b c Investigative Reports episode, A&E
  8. ^ "NC DOC Offender Public Information". Webapps6.doc.state.nc.us. Retrieved 2010-09-16. 

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