Former Carolina Panthers wide receiver Rae Carruth has spent almost 20 years in prison for conspiracy to murder his pregnant girlfriend.
Carruth, who is scheduled to be released from North Carolina’s Sampson Correctional Institution on Oct. 22, recently wrote a 15-page letter to Saundra Adams, the mother of his then-girlfriend, Cherica Adams.
Carruth sent the letter to local news station WBTV, and also spoke at length by phone with the station about the letter. In the conversation, Carruth accepted responsibility for the 1999 conspiracy to murder Adams. He also expressed interest in gaining custody of their son, who survived the incident.
“I’m apologizing for the loss of her daughter. I’m apologizing for the impairment of my son,” Carruth told the news station. “I feel responsible for everything that happened. And I just want her to know that truly I am sorry for everything.”
In 2001, Carruth was sentenced to 18-24 years behind bars after he was found guilty of hiring Van Brett Watkins and Michael Kennedy to murder Adams. Adams was shot multiple times by Watkins, who was sentenced to a minimum of 40 years. Kennedy, who drove the car, was released in 2011.
Adams died just a month after the shooting, but her son, Chancellor, was born prematurely with cerebral palsy as a result of his traumatic birth after the shooting.
Chancellor, 18, has been raised by his grandmother Saundra since he was born.
Carruth expressed that he wants custody of his son, pending his release.
“I should be raising my son. His mother should be raising her son,” Carruth said. “Ms. Adams should not be doing this and I want that responsibility back. I feel like he might not ever have his mother in his life, but he could still have me and I could still make a difference, and I don’t think that’s anyone’s responsibility when I’m still here.”