Former New Orleans Saints defensive end Will Smith had a blood alcohol level three times over the legal limit when he was shot and killed in April, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Two different sources told the Times-Picayune that Smith’s blood alcohol content was 0.24. Louisiana’s legal limit is 0.08. The toxicology results from Smith’s case have yet to be officially released to the public. Smith’s lawyer had previously maintained that his client was not “inebriated to the point” to which he couldn’t drive.

Smith, 34, was fatally shot following an altercation with another motorist who had rear-ended him. (Surveillance footage indicates Smith rear-ended the other vehicle first, and was then pursued.) He was shot eight times, while wife Racquel was hit twice.

Cardell Hayes, 28, was charged with second-degree murder, though his lawyers argue that he shot Smith in self-defense. Three guns were recovered from the scene, two of which belonged to Hayes. According to authorities, Smith’s gun was not fired.

Smith’s toxicology results have leaked out one day before Hayes is to appear in court, and would appear to help Hayes’ argument for self-defense.

Prior to the incident, Smith and his wife had been out to dinner with five friends, including former Saints teammate Pierre Thomas.

Smith played nine seasons with the Saints, from 2004 through 2013. He was the team’s first-round selection out of Ohio State, a starter on New Orleans’ 2010 Super Bowl champion, and a Pro Bowl selection in 2006.


About Ian Casselberry

Ian is a writer, editor, and podcaster. You can find his work at Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He's written for Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, MLive, Bleacher Report, and SB Nation.