HOUSTON (AP) — A crash at a red light killed six people including former NFL cornerback D.J. Hayden in downtown Houston early Saturday.
The two-vehicle crash occurred about 2 a.m. when a Chrysler 300, apparently “going very fast, high velocity,” ran the red light and collided with an SUV, Houston Police Assistant Chief Megan Howard said.
Five men and one woman died, including Hayden, the Houston Chronicle reported.
Hayden, 33, was born in Houston and starred at the University of Houston, according to his profile page on ESPN.com. A first-round draft pick in 2013, he played in eight seasons through 2020 for the Oakland Raiders, Detroit Lions and Jacksonville Jaguars.
Former University of Houston players Zach McMillian and Ralph Oragwu were among those injured in the crash, according to ABC’s Eyewitness News 13. All three men grew up in Fort Bend County, where other communities are mourning the tragedy. Hayden was a product of Elkins High School in Missouri City, McMillian graduated from Dulles High School in Sugar Land, and Oragwu was an alumnus of Marshall High School in Missouri City, News 13 reported.
Four people were pronounced dead at the scene. Those killed included the driver of the Chrysler and a man who appeared to be homeless, Howard said.
Four people were taken to the hospital and two of them died, Howard said, while one female passenger was in critical condition with life-threatening injuries.
Police interviewed a male passenger from the SUV at the hospital. Investigators were working to identify the driver of the SUV, Howard said.
“D.J.’s courage, perseverance, and dedication to his teammates will be fondly remembered by everyone who knew him,” the Raiders, now based in Las Vegas, said Saturday in a statement. “The prayers of the entire Raider Nation are with D.J. `s loved ones at this time.”
Top photo: A police officer removes crime scene tape from the area near the scene of a car accident, Saturday, Nov. 11, 2023, in downtown Houston. An early morning accident left six people dead including former University of Houston and NFL football player D.J. Hayden. (Raquel Nataliccho/Houston Chronicle via AP)
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