Judge allows access to medical records in Henry Ruggs case

Former Las Vegas Raiders Wide Receiver Henry Ruggs III Ordered to Appear In Court Following Fatal DUI Crash
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Former Raiders receiver Henry Ruggs III continues to face multiple felony charges following a car accident that claimed the life of 23-year-old Tina Tintor last November. And the legal case, as many legal cases do, continues to move slowly through the justice system.

Most recently, via the Associated Press, a judge has ruled that prosecutors can obtain medical records regarding injuries sustained by Ruggs’s girlfriend, Kiara Je’nai Kilgo-Washington. Prosecutors claim that they want the medical records in order to prove that Kilgo-Washington suffered substantial injuries in the crash, since those injuries provide a separate basis for charges against Ruggs.

The prosecution also may be looking to seal off grounds for reasonable doubt based on whether Ruggs was actually driving the car. If he elects not to testify and if Kilgo-Washington invokes the Fifth Amendment when asked whether she was driving, can it be proven to the satisfaction of the very high legal standard applicable to criminal cases that Ruggs was actually driving?

Regardless of whether anyone agrees with the propriety of such an approach, the entire criminal justice system is premised on forcing prosecutors to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. One of the key elements of the charges against Ruggs is that he was driving the car. Thus, while prosecutors may want those records in order to show that Kilgo-Washington suffered substantial injuries, the broader goal may be to secure a document in which she tells a doctor or some other medical professional that she was not driving the car and/or that Ruggs was.

Yes, it would be hearsay. And, yes, there are surely one or more various exceptions that could be utilized to allow the statement to be introduced into evidence at trial.

For now, there’s no specific reason to believe that Ruggs’s defense will be premised on the absence of sufficiently clear evidence that he was driving. But neither Ruggs nor his lawyers have any reason to put their cards on the table prematurely. The point is that the subtext for the prosecution’s pursuit of those records could be showing to the satisfaction of the reasonable-doubt standard that Ruggs was indeed driving.

10 responses to “Judge allows access to medical records in Henry Ruggs case

  1. Anyway you slice it, someone is dead because you had no self control and whatever the outcome, your career is finished. Man up and accept responsibility.

  2. He is going to walk away from this thing with probation and fine. Just the way it is.

  3. Or….she could say she WAS DRIVING…. and take decades behind prison walls and then wonder why Ruggs dumps her while she is doing his time…..that’s pretty stupid.

  4. It was a terrible accident. It was stupid. It wasn’t pre-meditated murder. We’ve seen people walk up and shoot people with a gun and walk away free. I certainly hope Ruggs walks away, too. You can’t let some people walk away free, and have others go to jail for a lesser crime.

  5. There’s absolutely no defense for what Ruggs did other than poor judgment and pure stupidity. He needs to own it and accept the consequences. He ended the lives of an innocent woman and her dog
    who were minding their own business.

  6. “We’ve seen people walk up and shoot people with a gun and walk away free.”

    Yes, happens multiple times a day in Chicago.

  7. I had serious doubts right after this happened that Ruggs was actually driving.

    I do not understand what she was so sorry for, saying it multiple times to Ruggs at the scene.

  8. The brainl3ss kid was drafted by a dysfunctional dumpster fire. It was bound to happen, what a terrible organization.

  9. They will know who was driving, forensics will prove that., if not a camera will which I’m sure will pick up an image of the driver in the city. Maybe finger prints in the door latch of each side of the car or even steering wheel. This scum is going to jail for a long time, his career is over.

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