Will Smith death: Cardell Hayes formally charged with killing former NFL star

He was also charged with shooting Smith's wife in the leg

Feliks Garcia
New York
Thursday 28 April 2016 19:52
<em>Harry How/Getty</em>
Harry How/Getty

A New Orleans grand jury indicted the man who allegedly shot and killed former NFL player Will Smith.

Cardell Hayes was charged with the murder of Smith following a 9 April traffic crash in New Orleans’ lower garden district. The two men argued following the collision, and Mr Hayes allegedly shot Smith seven times in the back and once in the chest as he walked away.

Mr Hayes also faces charges of attempted second-degree murder for allegedly shooting Smith’s wife, Racquel, in the leg. He is also charged aggravated criminal damage to a vehicle and aggravated assault of Smith.

The Times-Picayune reported that Smith may have been in possession of a gun when Hayes shot him – a notion that Peter Thomson, who represents the Smith family, disputes. According to Mr Thomson, Smith’s gun was in the vehicle, but kept safely in a compartment.

Attorneys for Mr Hayes say they can produce a witness that can testify to the contrary. Police reportedly have not disclosed whether or not a gun was in Smith’s possession or inside the car.

Will Smith was a defensive end for the New Orleans Saints from 2004 to 2013. He was part of the team for their 2010 Super Bowl win.

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