Back in January, former NBA baller Rasual Butler and his wife Leah LaBelle made headlines after they were involved in a fiery car crash that ultimately claimed their lives. At the time, there was speculation drugs and alcohol played a part in the crash since there was an empty Tequila bottle found in the back of Butler’s Range Rover. However, at the time none of the speculations had been confirmed – until now. According to US Weekly, autopsy and toxicology reports for the couple have revealed disheartening details about the substances in their systems which likely contributed to the crash.
It has been reported that reports released by the Los Angeles County coroner’s office have indicated that there was “alcohol, marijuana, methamphetamine, and oxycodone were in Butler’s system.” Reports have also revealed Butler had a blood alcohol level of 0.118 when crashed the vehicle.
On the night of Jan. 31., Butler was driving his Range Rover at approximately 60 to 90mph when he hit a concrete wall at a Los Angeles, CA shopping center. According to the Los Angeles Police Department, it was confirmed that Butler was speeding and ended up “jumping a curb, and his vehicle hit three parking meters and a concrete wall before flipping over twice and coming to rest in a shopping mall parking lot,” reports AOL.com. Both Butler and LaBelle were announced dead at the scene of the accident. The coroner confirmed both died of “multiple traumatic injuries” from the crash. A week after Butler’s death, TMZ released another report of surveillance footage that captured the sound of the crash. The impact was so loud, it was heard on a home surveillance camera from more than a block and a half away.
Check out the video below:
Gone Too Soon:
Both Butler and LaBelle had amazing careers and bright futures ahead. Butler played an impressive 14 years in the NBA on multiple teams including the Miami Heat, New Orleans Pelicans (formerly the Hornets), Los Angeles Clippers and Washington Wizards. Butler wrapped up his NBA career with the San Antonio Spurs during the 2015 to 2016 season. Leah LaBelle rose to stardom when she competed as a finalist on American Idol in 2004. With the success of American Idol, LaBelle was able to launch her singing career.
At the time of the crash, family and friends of the couple were absolutely shocked to hear about their deaths. A few of Butler’s former teams took to social media to share their reactions after hearing the tragic news. Clippers star Paul Pierce tweeted, “So sad this morning to here [sic] about my friend and teammate. RIP Rasual Butler appreciate the people around u because u never kno [sic].”
The Los Angeles Clippers also released a statement about Butler’s death. “The L.A. Clippers are deeply saddened by the loss of Rasual Butler and his wife, Leah LaBelle,” the statement read. “Rasual will long be remembered not only for his accomplishments on the court but for his vibrant personality, positive outlook and the compassion he had for everyone around him.” Paula Abdul also took to social media to remember LaBelle. She tweeted, “@leahlabelle was beautiful & had the voice of an ANGEL. She was my wild card pick on @AmericanIdol. I’m heartbroken to know that she & her husband @RasualButler45 have passed away. What a horrible tragedy.”
Prayers up to Rasual Butler and Leah LaBelle’s families.