Richard Sherman threatened to'self-destruct': Hear his wife's harrowing 911 call.
Richard Sherman, a five-time Pro Bowl cornerback, was having suicidal thoughts, according to a 911 call, before he was arrested and jailed early Wednesday morning in the Seattle suburb of Redmond, Wash., on three charges, including felony domestic violence residential burglary.
The arrest brought an end to a night that included what police suspect was an alcohol-related crash that rendered his SUV undriveable and subsequent threats to hang himself, according to audio obtained and publicized by KIRO Radio of a 911 call Sherman's wife, Ashley Moss, made.
According to a woman identifying herself as Moss, no weapons were involved, but Sherman was "aggressive" with her uncle after drinking "two bottles" of hard alcohol. He was "threaten[ing] suicide... and texting people that he was going to hang himself." She is heard pleading with him not to drive away, but her pleas go unanswered.
Sherman, a free agent, was also charged with resisting arrest and malicious mischief for causing damage to a door while attempting to force entry into his in-laws' home shortly before 2 a.m., Redmond police chief Darrell Lowe said during an afternoon news conference.
Domestic violence is a factor because of his relationship with his wife's parents, according to Lowe, and "not because he physically assaulted a significant other." That distinction may be critical in determining how teams view the risk of signing Sherman and how the NFL penalizes him (if he does sign with a team) under its separate personal code of conduct from the legal system.
Sherman was denied bail, as is customary in Washington prior to a person charged with domestic violence appearing before a judge. His initial court appearance is scheduled for Thursday, at which point formal charges will be filed.
“At this point, we're not going to make any statements except that he did not cause any harm,” Moss, Sherman's wife and mother of his two children, told The Seattle Times. “The incident did not result in any harm to my children. He is a decent person, and this is not in keeping with his character. We're doing fine; we're just attempting to extract him. I want the public to know that no one was harmed.”
Sherman's vehicle collided with a concrete barrier as he exited a construction zone with active workers, one of whom called 911, police said. According to Washington State Patrol captain Ron Mead, the SUV was discovered abandoned with significant damage to the driver's side. Sherman is said to have walked to a nearby residence.
According to Mead, police noticed signs of impairment and obtained a search warrant to draw blood from Sherman. According to an NBC Sports Bay Area report, the results are pending and may not be available for months due to a testing backlog.
Sherman, 33, was unable to gain entry to the house following the crash. According to Lowe, the interaction was "amicable" for about ten minutes, until Sherman was informed he was being arrested.
Sherman then attempted to flee from police, an altercation ensued, and the K-9 unit was called in to subdue Sherman, who sustained lacerations to his leg. According to police, he and a police officer were taken to the hospital with minor injuries. Sherman was taken into custody shortly after 6 a.m.
Sherman won a Super Bowl ring with the Seahawks and played for the 49ers the last three seasons, earning a spot on the NFL's All-Decade Team and a future Hall of Fame bust. He has expressed an interest in returning in 2021, and the Jets — who are in desperate need of a cornerback and are coached by the Sherman-lauded Robert Saleh — are a logical destination if he is willing to assist in the rebuilding process.
Sherman serves on the executive committee of the NFL Players Association.
“We were made aware last night of an arrest of one of our player leaders for an alleged domestic violence incident and have activated our domestic violence crisis protocol for the protection and support of all parties involved,” the NFLPA stated in a statement. The NFLPA typically does not comment on player arrests. “We will continue to closely monitor events as new information becomes available.”