Former Nebraska star football running back Lawrence Phillips was charged with murder on Tuesday for allegedly strangling cellmate Damion Soward, according to the Associated Press.
The death penalty will not be on the table for Phillips according to a report from USA TODAY because there were no “special circumstances” surrounding the case. (RELATED: Former NFL RB Lawrence Phillips Suspected Of Killing Cellmate)
Phillips was in the process of serving a 31-year sentence at Kern Valley State Prison in California for beating his girlfriend and running over three people with his vehicle. Soward was serving a sentence of 81 years to life for first degree murder. Phillips was eligible for release in 2032, but it is likely that this new murder charge will drastically put that in jeopardy.
Before Phillips’ NFL career flamed out in three quick seasons in the late 1990s, he was a college star and two time National Champion for the Nebraska Cornhuskers. Lawrence’s most notable season came as a sophomore in 1994 when he rushed for more than 1,800 yards and 16 touchdowns. (RELATED: BREAKING: Former New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez Found Guilty Of 1st Degree Murder [VIDEO])
Lawrence Phillips was selected sixth overall in the NFL draft by the St. Louis Rams in 1996. He would go on to play for the Miami Dolphins, the San Francisco 49ers, in Europe and in Canada before being arrested in 2005 for multiple crimes.