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.
(He has made this claim before.) He said he did press her to get an abortion but dropped it when she demurred. He doesn't discuss the events of Nov. 16, 1999.
Van Brett Watkins, who served as the shooter, was handed a minimum of 40 years. Michael Kennedy drove the car and has been out since 2011.
Stanley Abraham was in the car and has also completed his sentence.
Carruth has only met him twice, years ago, but was encouraged by comments Saundra Adams has made about being at the prison with Chancellor on the day Carruth is released.
He wants much more: To ultimately gain custody of his son, who requires care.
"I can say definitively he’s not ever going to have custody of Chancellor. Chancellor will be raised either by me or, after I'm gone, by someone else who loves him and who knows him. He will never be raised by a stranger—someone he doesn't know and who tried to kill him."
CBS Sports flags this excerpt: "Ms. Adams, the story of how you lost your daughter; how Chancellor came into this world; and the way that he has gone on to endure, thrive, and over achieve with you by his side is so heart wrenching and inspiring on its own, that there isn't any need for embellishment or lies. And yet you've made a habit out of doing so in every interview that you've given."
This article originally appeared on Newser: NFL Star Had Girlfriend Killed. 17 Years Later, He Speaks