New details emerge over NFL’s Will Smith shooting as gun is found

Cardell Hayes (Photo Credit: Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office)
Cardell Hayes (Photo credit: Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office)

The tragic shooting of former New Orleans Saints player Will Smith shocked many across the country. Smith was allegedly shot and killed by Cardell Hayes after a minor traffic accident earlier this week.

New details are now emerging about the incident and a possible motivation for the shooting. A video has surfaced showing Smith rear-ended Hayes’ vehicle and then drove off at a high rate of speed. Hayes apparently confronted Smith after a brief car chase and an argument ensued. A cellphone video has emerged with an unknown witness to the shooting describing the events prior to the shooting. In the video, a man is heard saying, “I guess this guy was like, ‘Get out of here or I have a gun,’ and he goes, ‘F— y’all, I’ve got one too.'”

Three days after the shooting, police found a loaded 9-millimeter handgun was found in the Mercedes-Benz belonging to Will Smith. There are suggestions that Smith may have threatened Hayes first with the gun and that Hayes fired his weapon in self-defense killing the former football star and hitting Smith’s wife, Raquel, in her leg.

Hayes was a former security guard for the New Orleans Saints and there was speculation that he knew Smith but his lawyer has denied that the two knew each other.

In a strange coincidence, Smith was having dinner earlier that evening with retired New Orleans Police Captain William Ceravolo. Ceravolo was one of the officers involved in a police shooting that claimed the life of Anthony Hayes, the father of Cardell Hayes, in December 2005. The Hayes family sued the New Orleans Police Department for that shooting and settled a multimillion dollar lawsuit in September of 2011.

Hayes is currently being held on a $1 million bond and is charged with second-degree murder. He is also facing charges for the shooting of Raquel Smith.

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