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Heisman Trophy Winner Rashaan Salaam’s Death Ruled a Suicide in an Autopsy Report

Rashaan Salaam’s death has officially been ruled a suicide, according to the autopsy report released by the Boulder County Coroner’s Office in Colorado on Thursday, December 29.

As previously reported, the former NFL player and Heisman Trophy winner was found dead at the age of 42 in a park in Boulder, Colorado, on December 5. Authorities said at the time that there were no signs of foul play.

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Rashaan Salaam
Rashaan Salaam

Salaam died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head near his girlfriend’s car, according to the Associated Press. The report states that he had a blood-alcohol concentration of .250 and marijuana in his system, and that he had “a history of depression and recent life stressors.” He reportedly left behind a note.

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Back in 1999, Salaam opened up about his excessive marijuana use to ESPN. “When I got hurt, I knew [marijuana] was a problem because it pretty much consumed all my time. I wasn’t going to practice or anything like that, so I pretty much spent a lot of my time sitting around and getting high, and that’s when I knew I had to let it go,” he said at the time. “I wasn’t outgoing. I was just to myself. All I wanted to do was go home and do what I wanted to do. I wasn’t a social person. I was an outcast.”

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It is still unknown whether Salaam, who is Muslim, suffered chronic head trauma because of the sport. Per the AP, his family, citing religious reasons, wouldn’t allow the coroner’s officer to perform tests.

Salaam was laid to rest on December 9 at the Islamic Center of Boulder. More than 250 people attended the funeral service.

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