*Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chris Henry has died, one day after falling out of the back of a pickup truck in what authorities described as a domestic dispute with his fiancee.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said Henry died at 6:36 a.m. Thursday. Henry was 26.
“It is with great sadness to learn Chris has passed away,” Henry’s agent, Andy Simms said in a statement. “For those who knew Chris, he was nothing like his public perception. A loving and caring individual, he was thankful for what he had in life, and proud of what he had overcome.”
Henry was rushed to the hospital Wednesday after being found on a residential road. Police said the dispute began at a home about a half-mile away, and Henry jumped into the bed of the pickup truck as his fiancee was driving away from the residence.
Police said at some point when she was driving, Henry “came out of the back of the vehicle.” They wouldn’t identify the woman, and no charges were immediately filed.
Police spokeswoman Rosalyn Harrington said homicide detectives have been assigned to the case but had no further information. Police have not released the 911 tapes, and Harrington wouldn’t say if the woman was present at the scene when police arrived.
Authorities have not announced the cause of death. Mecklenburg County medical examiner investigator Carol Cormier said they were expecting to receive the body later Thursday.
Henry is engaged to Loleini Tonga, and the couple has been raising three children. Tonga’s MySpace page identifies herself as “Mrs. C. Henry” and has a picture of her next to a person who appears to be Henry. She also has a post from Tuesday talking about buying wedding rings. A neighbor said Wednesday that the Tonga family owns the home where police say the incident began. Charlotte is home to his fiancee’s parents.
“We ask that you keep Chris’ family — especially the young children he leaves behind — in your prayers,” Simms said. “It is tragic when a life is taken so young. He was a man just realizing his potential, not just in football, but in life”
Henry was away from the team after breaking his left forearm during a win over Baltimore on Nov. 8. He had surgery and was placed on season-ending injured reserve following the game.
Throughout his career, his temper and poor decisions got him in trouble.
Read more of this AP report HERE.