Former NFL player Rae Carruth walked out of prison Monday after serving 19 years for planning to kill his pregnant girlfriend and their unborn son.
WCNC News reports Carruth, a former Carolina Panthers wide receiver in late 1990s, was released Monday from prison in North Carolina.
In 2001, he was found guilty of conspiring to murder his pregnant girlfriend, Cherica Adams, and attempting to destroy an unborn child, his son Chancellor. He was found not guilty of first-degree murder, WSB-TV 2 reports.
According to reports, Carruth hired two hitmen, Van Brett Watkins and Michael Kennedy, in 1999. On Nov. 16, 1999, on their way home from the movies, Carruth blocked Adams with his vehicle while Watkins and Kennedy came from behind in another vehicle; then, Watkins shot Adams four times, the report states.
Adams went into a coma and died a few weeks later, but doctors were able to save her son, Chancellor. He has cerebral palsy and lives with his maternal grandmother, Saundra Adams, who has devoted her life to caring for him. Chancellor’s condition is due to loss of blood and oxygen the night when his mother was shot; he also was born prematurely, according to the report.
Carruth recently told reporters that he wants custody of his son, but Adams said she will fight to keep her grandson.
“I’ve forgiven Rae already, but to have any type of relationship with him, there does have to be some repentance,” Adams she told reporters. “And I think this opens the door. But I can say definitively he’s not ever going to have custody of Chancellor … He will never be raised by a stranger — someone he doesn’t know and who tried to kill him.”
She said her daughter refused to abort Chancellor, even though Carruth pressured her to repeatedly.
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According to the hitmen’s testimony, Carruth did want to kill Chancellor.
Watkins said Carruth told him about a former pregnant girlfriend who insisted on having her baby.
“He said he don’t want to pay. She wants to have the baby. I don’t want her to have the baby. I want you to beat her up and abort the baby,” Watkins said. “And I thought about it for five months before I did it. He called me 180 times in 150 days.” …
“He was already paying $5,000 in child support and he didn’t want to pay another $5,000 in child support,” Michael Kennedy said in court.
Watkins is serving 40 to 50 years in prison for Adams’ murder, while Kennedy, who drove the car, served 10 years, according to the report.
On Sunday, Carruth said he wants to be forgiven and to develop a relationship with his son.
“I’m excited about just being out of here. I’m nervous just about how I’ll be received by the public,” Carruth told ABC News. “I still have to work. I still have to live. I have to exist out there and it just seems like there is so much hate and negativity toward me. I’m actually some what frightened.”
He said he wants his mother-in-law and son to forgive him