The sad story of Lawrence Phillips's prison death just got that much more grim.
A copy of an autopsy and coroner's report says that the former NFL running back hung himself with a bed sheet to a five-foot high metal TV shelf in his cell at the Kern Valley State Prison in California on January 13, as reported by USA Today Sports on Wednesday. The publication additionally reported that a note, which read, "Do Not Resuscitate," was taped to his chest.
A photo of an unidentified child and a separate note were also found in Phillips's left sock, although the message of the note wasn't revealed. Phillips was 40.
The former No. 6 overall pick of the 1996 NFL Draft was serving a 24-year sentence for assaulting an ex-girlfriend and plowing his car into three teenagers. At the time of his death, he was also awaiting a trial that could have given him the death penalty over the murder charge of a former prison cell mate, Damion Soward.
According to USA Today, a correctional officer saw that the window of Phillips's cell was covered by a towel before finding him unresponsive, paving the way for him to be pronounced dead less than two hours later at a nearby hospital.
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(Photo: Joe Robbins/Getty Images)