Former NFL player Lawrence Phillips found dead in prison

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Former NFL and CFL running back Lawrence Phillips has been found dead in a California cell while serving sentences for driving a car into teenagers and choking his former girlfriend, officials say.

Phillips, 40, was found unresponsive at about 12:05 a.m. PT on Wednesday when staff at the Kern Valley State Prison (KVSP) were conducting security checks. Phillips was rushed to an outside hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1:27 a.m. PT.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) described the death as a suspected suicide, but provided no other details.

Phillips had been in an Administrative Segregation Unit on single-cell status since April 2013 when he became a suspect in the killing of a cellmate. He was currently in the early stages of the trial for the homicide.

The alleged murder happened while Phillips was serving a 31-year, four-month sentence for inflicting great bodily injury involving domestic violence, corporal injury to a spouse, false imprisonment and vehicle theft. That sentence was to run consecutive to a 2008 sentence for driving a car into 3 teenagers after a dispute.

Phillips played for the St. Louis Rams from 1996 to 1997, and then briefly for the Miami Dolphins, Barcelona Dragons, San Francisco 49ers. and the Florida Bobcats. After that, he went on to play for the Montreal Alouettes and the Calgary Stampeders.

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