Early Tuesday morning, rumors started to swirl that Las Vegas Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs, 22, was involved in a car crash in Las Vegas when a video circulated online of a totaled green Corvette that looked similar to his.
As TMZ Sports first reported and the police later confirmed, those rumors were true. Police said Ruggs was involved in a car crash in the Las Vegas Valley area around 3:39 a.m. local time on November 2. According to a news release from the Las Vegas Metro Police Department, a 23-year-old woman died in the crash after being trapped in her burning car. She was later named as Tina O. Tintor.
Appearing in court on November 3, prosecutors said Tintor’s dog was also killed in the crash, during which they alleged Ruggs was driving 156 miles per hour just two seconds before the crash, with a blood alcohol content of “more than twice the legal limit, and a loaded gun was found in the car,” according to Las Vegas Review-Journal reporter Katelyn Newberg.
Photos show that Ruggs appeared in court in a neck brace and wheelchair.
Ruggs remained in jail on $150,000 bail as of the afternoon of November 3, according to Clark County Detention Center records reviewed by Heavy, though the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that he posted bond “shortly after making his initial court appearance.” It was not immediately known if Ruggs has hired an attorney who could comment on his behalf.
Ruggs Charged With DUI Resulting in Death, Police Say
In a series of tweets around 11 a.m. local time, the LVMPD confirmed that Ruggs was involved in the crash and said he “showed signs of impairment” when authorities arrived on the scene:
On Nov. 2, at approximately 3:39 a.m., the LVMPD responded to a traffic collision near the intersection of South Rainbow Boulevard and South Spring Valley Parkway, involving a Chevrolet Corvette and a Toyota Rav4. Responding officers located the Toyota on fire. Fire department personnel responded and located a deceased victim inside the Toyota. The preliminary investigation indicates the front of the Chevrolet collided with the rear of the Toyota. The driver of the Chevrolet, identified as 22-year-old Henry Rugs III, remained on scene and showed signs of impairment. He was transported to UMC hospital to be treated for non-life-threatening injuries. Ruggs will be charged with DUI resulting in death.
The news release from police offered more details of the crash. According to the report, Ruggs’ vehicle “was traveling … at a high rate of speed” when it “veered” into the right lane where the Toyota was. The Corvette “struck the rear of the Toyota,” which “came to final rest and caught on fire with the driver trapped in the driver’s seat,” according to the report. Emergency personnel arrived and extinguished the fire but were unable to save the driver, who died at the scene, police wrote.
The police said Ruggs will be charged with DUI resulting in death, a class B felony.
Ruggs’ attorney told TMZ, “On behalf of our client Henry Ruggs III we are conducting our own investigation as of this writing and ask everyone to reserve judgment until all the facts are gathered.”
As The Athletic’s Tashan Reed noted, if Ruggs is convicted under Nevada state law, the 2020 first-round draft pick could face penalties including two to 20 years in prison, fines ranging from $2,000-$5,000 and a three-year driver’s license suspension.
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Ruggs & His Girlfriend Were Injured in the ‘Fiery Crash’
The video of the post-crash scene, released by Hector Mejia of 8 News Now, shows two cars — a Toyota RAV4 and Ruggs’ Chevrolet Corvette — that have been completely totaled. An earlier tweet shows the aftermath of what he called the “fiery crash.”
TMZ reported that a source close to Ruggs said he is “expected to be OK.” According to the news release from police, both Ruggs and his 22-year-old girlfriend, Kiara Kilgo-Washington, also known as Rudy Washington, were transported to University Medical Center Trauma with “serious” injuries. Ruggs and Washington have an 18-month-old daughter together, according to Roll Tide Wire and posts on Ruggs’ social media accounts.
In an October 22 video on her YouTube channel, “The RuPrint,” Washington talked about traveling with a 1-year-old. “First and foremost, don’t do this. Don’t be recording this stuff while you’re driving, da da da,” she opens the video, saying she’s driving to the airport in Vegas to fly to Denver for the Raiders’ Week 6 game. The video had been removed from the site by November 4.
The day before the crash, Washington took to Instagram to promote a November 15 community food drive sponsored by Ruggs and the Rod Scott Foundation.
Washington is from Montgomery, Alabama, according to her Instagram profile. According to the Paine College website, she was an outside hitter on the college’s volleyball team as a sophomore in 2018.
Ruggs posted photos of himself alongside the Corvette on his Instagram page on September 21.
The Raiders issued a public statement via the team’s official Twitter account at 12:26 p.m. local time on Tuesday saying they were “aware of an accident involving Henry Ruggs III that occurred this morning in Las Vegas. We are devastated by the loss of life and our thoughts and prayers go out to the victim’s family. We are in the process of gathering information and will have no further comment at this time.”
Before the day was through, the Raiders announced they had released Ruggs.
Ruggs Was in the Midst of a Breakout Season
Ruggs was the first wide receiver selected in a loaded 2020 NFL draft class, though his rookie year was disappointing as he only caught 26 passes for 452 yards and two touchdowns. The former Alabama star was determined to improve his play in 2021 and added 12 pounds of muscle in the offseason. The results were positive for Ruggs as he turned into one of quarterback Derek Carr’s favorite targets.
The second-year wide receiver led the Raiders in receiving yards (469) through seven games and was developing into one of the team’s top offensive weapons. The fatal crash put an end to a season that started very promising.
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What??? He could get a three-year driver’s license suspension??? I had 3 dui’s, no property damage or injuries, in Florida and I got a LIFETIME suspension! I have not driven since 1997 and not drank a drop since 1999 but still cannot get a license in any of the 50 states! WTF???