Judge denies motion to exclude Henry Ruggs’s BAC level

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Former Raiders receiver Henry Ruggs will not escape responsibility for the drunk-driving death of Tina Tintor on a technicality.

Via ESPN.com, a judge ruled on Tuesday that police indeed had probable cause to seek a warrant authorizing the drawing of blood from Ruggs to determine his blood-alcohol concentration. The reading was 0.16 percent, twice the legal limit.

“There’s obvious time constraints in applying for a search warrant for a blood draw,” Justice of the Peace Ann Zimmerman said, via ESPN.com. “Under the totality of the circumstances, there is more than sufficient evidence for a finding of probable cause for the issuance of the search warrant in this case. . . . Nobody has mentioned so far that Mr. Ruggs was seriously injured in this accident and transported to the hospital, so he would have been unable to submit to field sobriety tests. Coupled with his refusal to answer questions, this does not result in a reward. . . . Motion to suppress is denied.”

Ruggs will have the ability to appeal that decision. Given the outcome in the case — the death of Tina Tintor in a fire caused by a crash that happened when Ruggs was driving his Corvette at 156 miles per hour — it’s hard to imagine anyone giving Ruggs a pass based on the question of whether police had a legitimate basis for suspecting that Ruggs was drunk.

As the saying goes, bad facts make bad law. This case has some very bad facts. It’s impossible to ignore them when otherwise trying to apply in objective and dispassionate fashion legal principles aimed at protecting Americans from unjustified incarceration. In this case, any outcome other than Ruggs facing the full weight of the justice system for his behavior feels unjust.

42 responses to “Judge denies motion to exclude Henry Ruggs’s BAC level

  1. Justice prevails! Henry Ruggs, you did this to yourself! You should have called Uber, Lyft, or the transportation service that the NFL provides for its players. You ignored all of that, so now you must suffer the consequences.

  2. I understand there are all kinds of loopholes in the law, but if this guy finds even one of them that would be very disheartening.

  3. I’m curious as to why the Raiders haven’t filed lawsuit to reclaim some of the guaranteed money Ruggs has received .. I’m sure there is a clause in all rookie contracts stipulating code of conduct requirements.

    Who’s jurisdiction would that fall under.. the General Manager? team President? I’m sure the GM would like the reclaimed funds for cap purposes and the President would like to maximize company revenue in every way possible.

  4. Um, yeah. This is a pretty common exception- especially when the suspect is non-responsive. It was worth a shot for his lawyers, but no way that evidence was going to be excluded.

  5. While awful to end the young man’s career, it’s much worse to end a life. Couple that with driving while intoxicated at 156mph, I find it difficult to sympathize.

  6. Harming and animal or human being in a vehicle accident should be immediate probable cause in all cases.

  7. Even if the blood test was thrown out, why would that really matter? This isn’t simply a DUI. Regardless whether he was hammered, buzzed, or stone-cold sober, he was driving 156 MPH, crashed into another car, and killed someone. A better defense would be to call into doubt whether he was the driver.

  8. Little consolation to Ms. Tintor and her family but hopefully this is the first step towards justice being served

  9. Ruggs is seemingly trying to play the victim. Not happening. An innocent woman lost her life, and Ruggs should spend his days in prison thinking about it.

  10. We’ll thank god for common sense. I thought this new world we live in was totally without any. Glad to be proved wrong

  11. dryzzt23 says:
    July 12, 2022 at 3:10 pm
    Justice prevails! Henry Ruggs, you did this to yourself! You should have called Uber, Lyft, or the transportation service that the NFL provides for its players. You ignored all of that, so now you must suffer the consequences.


    But then he wouldn’t look cool

  12. This is 100% the right decision. Loopholes like these need to be closed on these types of cases. I don’t have an issue with mandatory tests if there are major accidents.

  13. The DUI wouldn’t have even mattered all that much as Ruggs could be convicted for criminal vehicular manslaughter. And with an impact speed of over 120MPH, there’s no doubt about that. The guy is facing significant jail time regardless.

  14. Put him on the Supreme Court. Finally, a judge that makes decisions using the law AND common sense.

  15. “meetadam says:
    July 12, 2022 at 3:41 pm
    Yikes, slow legal system. Dude should have been lock away for life ages ago.”..

    Money buys more time when it comes to the justice system. Time to find a way to weasel out of it.

  16. And yet he has NOT BEEN SUSPENDED for ANY Time by the NFL…..

    and YES….

    SUSPENSIONS of released players has occurred in the past.

  17. In Minny any traffic accident involved in deaths, the drivers get alcohol tests period. Nationwide if you hold a CDL and refuse a test due to an accident you lose your license for a year minimum so this prick who killed a young girl and her dog max – I read accounts he was sitting on the curb crying about his situation while the car he hit was on fire and he did nothing to help.
    I hope he gets 30 years.
    Oh, sorry I have a single daughter with a dog named Max.

  18. They’re are no winners in this situation and there shouldn’t be. An innocent woman and her dog are dead, their family and friends are grief stricken. Ruggs’ will have to live with the guilt that he had killed and serve a very long sentance behind bars in the prime of his life, all the while knowing he will never have the opportunity to earn generational wealth in the NFL.

  19. If he signed a second contract that motion would have been mysteriously upheld.

  20. Encouraging except for the point that was mentioned – this decision can be appealed.
    I can’t feel good about this one yet.

  21. Race card will be the next defense. I’m sure his lawyer is on the phone with lebron right now to cry to the media how Ruggs is being framed by The Man.

  22. I didn’t realise excluding the alcohol reading was a thing in the US. That being said, it’s a material fact and should be presented as that. Hugely disrespectful to the poor girl who died and her family, that this kind of stunt should be pulled.

  23. He launched her car 571 FEET!!!!!!!!! That’s almost the length of two football fields. I was shocked that even at that speed, that’s how far it went.

  24. I served my time and the money scam on my D.W.I. I also didn’t kill anyone. Ruggs should have been at home drinking water and eating what his nutritionist suggested. Butt Ruggs still thought he was in college and acted unprofessional. He needs to serve his time and think about the girl he killed and how it has effected her family.

  25. Giving fast 20 year old 20 million dollars to buy a fast car is a recipe for disaster.

  26. I live by the motto “it never hurts to ask”, but asking if the BAC level can be excluded for Ruggs is a Joke, Right. Why on earth would they exclude the BAC level? Makes no sense.

  27. A woman and her dog burned to death because of Ruggs. He needs to spend the rest of his life in prison.

  28. Don’t worry, The NFL is going come down hard on him. After all
    Roger Goodell is in charge!!

  29. If Ruggs was truly remorseful ,he should plead GULTY , and start his sentence in prison never to be heard from again. Nothing can bring Tina and her pet back.

  30. In case you are ever curious why people hate lawyers, here’s a perfect example. This guy plows into an innocent woman and her dog drunk off his butt. Both slaughtered in a fiery Hell. The lawyers trying to fix it so he’s not held accountable. And you can save your BS comments about, oh he’s just doing his job. I bet the lawyer is telling him he will not only get him off but that he will be playing football again in the NFL. Defense lawyers are the scum of the earth.

  31. Probable cause and search warrants are not ‘loopholes,’ they are essential protections against government overreach. The system worked here, as it does in most cases.

  32. Give him the maximum. That’s what the girl and her dog got, for doing absolutely nothing wrong.

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