An autopsy has revealed that suicide was the cause of death for former Nebraska great Lawrence Phillips.
Phillips, 40, was found dead in his Kern Valley State Prison (Calif.) cell on Jan. 13 with a bed sheet tied to a TV shelf and tied tightly to his neck, according to a California coroner's report released Wednesday.
The former NFL tailback was charged with killing his former cell mate, 37-year-old Damion Soward, who's the cousin of former USC wideout R. Jay Soward. Phillips was initially prisoned in 2008 after being convicted of "twice choking his girlfriend in 2005 in San Diego and of driving his car into three teens later that year after a pickup football game in Los Angeles," per the AP.
The coroner's report revealed that Phillips had a "Do Not Resuscitate" note taped to his chest when he was found hanging in his cell. The report also says that another note and a picture of Phillips and an unnamed child were found tucked in his left sock.
The coroner concluded that Phillips committed suicide while awaiting a trial for the killing of his cell mate that could have given him the death penalty.
Phillips was a star at Nebraska before getting drafted by the St. Louis Rams in 1996. He played in the NFL until 2000.
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