Shooter who killed 5 in South Carolina was former NFL player

Former NFL player Phillip Adams allegedly shot six people, killing five, before shooting himself Wednesday in York County, S.C. Dreamstime/TNS

YORK COUNTY, S.C. — The suspect who shot six people in York County Wednesday, killing five before later killing himself, has been identified as former NFL player Phillip Adams, the York County coroner and sources told The Herald.

Adams, 32, played for the San Francisco 49ers, Oakland Raiders, New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks and New York Jets in a six-year career that began in 2010. He was drafted in the seventh round in 2010 by the 49ers.

Sources told The Herald that Adams was found by police in his family’s home, down the street from the shooting site. After police surrounded the home, Adams is believed to have shot himself, said Sabrina Gast, York County Coroner.

Law enforcement sources said Adams’ mother was inside the family home during part of a standoff with police. Adams’ mother was safely removed from the home by police before Adams was found dead, sources told The Herald.

His mother was a former teacher in the Rock Hill school district who was disabled after a car crash in 2010, The Herald reported at that time.

Adams attended South Carolina State University after starring in football and basketball at Rock Hill High School.

During the 2012 NFL season with the Raiders, he suffered two concussions over a three-game stretch, which, combined with a groin injury, eventually ended his season. He also had a gruesome broken left ankle in 2010.

Dr. Robert Lesslie and the others were shot at Lesslie’s home late Wednesday, York County Sheriff’s Office and York County Coroner officials said.

Officials have not said what the motive was for Adams to target Robert Lesslie and Lesslie’s wife, two grandchildren and two maintenance workers who were at the house.

Charlotte Observer reporter Alaina Getzenberg contributed to this report.

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