Cierre Wood, a former Notre Dame running back who washed out of the NFL, has been charged with murder in Las Vegas after forcing a 5-year-old girl to exercise until she was so fatigued she fell and slammed her head on the floor causing her death, police say.
Police arrested Wood after the April 9 death of little La’Rayah Davis, the daughter of Woods’ girlfriend, Amy Taylor. The girl was brought to the hospital where doctors found her with severe internal injuries including a lacerated liver, broken ribs, deep bruises of her thighs, and a serious head injury, Fox News reported.
UPDATE: @chrisredreports reported last night that former NFL player Cierre Wood was facing a child abuse charge. Wood now faces a murder charge as wellhttps://t.co/y2vJsi1ZaZ pic.twitter.com/tlChMusBcH
— FOX5 Las Vegas (@FOX5Vegas) April 11, 2019
The former Houston Texans player was initially charged with child abuse, but after the toddler died prosecutors increased the charges to murder.
Woods told police that he felt the girl was overweight and began forcing her to perform football-styled exercise routines not suitable for a small child. Police say Wood called the forced exercise regime “learning through fun,” and added that he was “trying to get her on the right path due to her being chunky.”
Woods allegedly told police he forced the girl to do large numbers of sit-ups and wall squats. But at one point the girl stood up very woozy and fell striking her head against the floor.
The failed football player said the girl went unconscious and when he tried to revive her a “chunky red fluid” came out of her nose. He then called 911.
Woods, who washed out of the NFL after two seasons and played for a short time in the Canadian Football League, is being held without bail and will likely appear in court on May 21.
The girl’s mother was also charged with murder after she admitted she sat on the small child’s torso a week before her death because the little tot was behaving badly.
Amy Taylor, 25, also admitted that she feared she seriously hurt the child with the untoward punishment. The girl stopped eating and complained of chest pains after being sat upon by her mother.
“I honestly feel like when I sat on her I f**ked her up…And now I don’t have a child now,” Taylor told police according to court documents.
Taylor is also being held without bail and is charged with murder.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.