LAS VEGAS — Prosecutors are entitled to blood test results as they pursue four felony drunken driving charges against former Raiders wide receiver Henry Ruggs III, but they cannot ask doctors what Ruggs said in the aftermath of his predawn fiery car crash on Nov. 2 or his injuries suffered in it, a Las Vegas judge said Thursday.
Justice of the Peace Pro Tem Robert Walsh said he would issue a written order to invoke Nevada privacy laws to limit information available to prosecutors.
“The blood test results will be released, in addition to the authentication of the medical records,” Walsh said. “Nothing to do with conversations or treatment as to any patient-doctor relationship.”
While doctors will not be witnesses, the prosecution can obtain testimony from police, firefighters, neighbors and passing motorists.
Peter Christensen, the attorney for Ruggs’ girlfriend, Kiara Je’nai Kilgo-Washington, who was a passenger in the car, has argued that his client was a victim in the case and that the state is not legally entitled to any of her medical records. Neither Ruggs nor Kilgo-Washington was required to appear in court for Thursday’s hearing.
While attorneys for Ruggs and Kilgo-Washington have declined to specify the injuries they incurred — Ruggs lawyer David Chesnoff did say in a Nov. 22 hearing that his client was in a leg cast for more than two weeks — both were hospitalized after the wreck. And Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson has said he believed Ruggs’ leg and Kilgo-Washington’s arm were injured. Ruggs was in a wheelchair while wearing a foam neck brace in his initial court appearance the morning after the crash.
Prosecutor Eric Bauman told the judge Thursday that Kilgo-Washington’s medical records were needed to prove she received substantial injuries according to law.
Walsh also moved a preliminary hearing of evidence to March 10. It was originally scheduled for next week.
Ruggs, 22, is accused of driving 156 mph in a residential neighborhood in his 2020 Chevrolet Corvette and ramming into the back of 23-year-old Tina Tintor’s 2013 Toyota RAV4, setting it ablaze and killing her and her dog, Max. He had a blood-alcohol content level of 0.16, twice the legal limit in Nevada.
Raiders owner Mark Davis attended Tintor’s funeral.
The Raiders released Ruggs, a first-round draft pick in the 2020 draft out of Alabama, less than 24 hours after the crash. He posted $150,000 bail and is on house arrest with strict conditions that include an ankle monitor and daily alcohol tests.
Ruggs is facing four felony counts — DUI resulting in death, DUI resulting in substantial bodily harm and two reckless driving charges — and a misdemeanor charge of possession of a gun while under the influence of alcohol. If convicted, he is looking at a mandatory two years in prison and could face more than 50 years.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.