Monday brought some answers in the case of Britt Reid, who now faces felony DWI charges. It raises more questions, questions that for now his former employer isn’t answering.
Via Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports, the Kansas City Chiefs declined comment when asked whether the team has any information regarding where Reid, a former assistant coach with the team and son of head coach Andy Reid, consumed alcohol before slamming into two cars at nearly 84 miles per hour with a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.113 percent, well over the legal limit of 0.08.
An illustration contained within an excellent column from Wetzel on the topic shows the proximity of the accident scene and the team’s practice facility. Common senses suggests that Britt Reid possibly was drinking in the building before driving home, only three days before Super Bowl LV.
Writes Wetzel, “The NFL tries to cloak itself in personal responsibility and community partnership. It needs to investigate and, if needed, punish a favored franchise and the family of a famous coach as aggressively as it does a misbehaving athlete. If Roger Goodell is all about protecting the shield, then how about protecting the public from this stuff?”
In 2020, the NFL took great pride in knowing whether and to what extent individuals in every team facility were complying with all COVID-19 protocols. As the Super Bowl approached, enhanced steps were taken — with monitors from the league office reportedly dispatched to provide extra surveillance to the teams that made it to the league’s final four.
So what did the Chiefs know, what should the Chiefs have known, and when did they know it? In turn, what did the league observers know, what should they have known, and when did they know it? These are questions that will be answered within the confines of litigation aimed at securing full and complete compensation for five-year-old Ariel Young, who (per Wetzel) cannot walk or talk and is fed through a tube.
The fact that the family of Ariel Young may be looking to the Chiefs and/or the NFL for additional compensation could be the reason for the current silence. With those questions surely coming once a lawsuit is filed regarding the crash, there’s no reason (from a legal standpoint) for the team or the league to say anything that could be used against them in court.
Still, the questions will linger until they are answered. As Wetzel notes, the Chiefs and the league surely know the answers already.
Where was Britt Reid drinking? Was it in the team’s facility? Who else from the team, if anyone, knew he was drinking? Who else from the team, if anyone, was drinking with him? Who provided the alcohol?
The league has clear rules against the presence of alcohol in team facilities. Whether that leads to potential civil liability becomes a different issue, one that will be driven by how much the team knew and/or how much the team was involved in allowing alcohol to be consumed on its premises.
It’s possible the Chiefs knew absolutely nothing. It’s possible Britt Reid didn’t even drink in the facility. It’s possible that, if he did, he did it secretly and discreetly, and that no one knew or had reason to know.
It’s also possible that the knowledge and involvement swept more broadly than that. Until those questions are publicly answered, they will linger. And they should.
Someone got in a car at the Chiefs facility, drove it a short distance, and inflicted serious and permanent injuries on a five-year-old girl. The public deserves to know more about how that happened, and the public and the media should demand those answers.