Police: T.O. tried to kill himself
DALLAS (AP) – Flamboyant Dallas Cowboys receiver Terrell Owens tried to kill himself by overdosing on pain medication, even putting two more pills into his mouth after a friend intervened, according to a police report obtained Wednesday.
The report said Owens was asked by rescue workers "if he was attempting to harm himself, at which time (he) stated, 'Yes."'
The Dallas police report said the 32-year-old Owens told his friend "that he was depressed." Details of the police report were first reported by WFAA-TV. Police scheduled a news conference for later Wednesday morning.
The friend, who is not identified in the report, "noticed that (his) prescription pain medication was empty and observed (Owens) putting two pills in his mouth," the police report said. The friend attempted to pry them out with her fingers, then was told by Owens that before this incident he'd taken only five of the 40 pain pills in the bottle he'd emptied.
According to the police report, Dallas Fire and Rescue was called regarding someone "attempting suicide by prescription pain medication." Officers arrived to find Owens being stabilized by ambulance workers, who then took him to Baylor University Medical Center.
Owens was hospitalized late Tuesday because of what his publicist said was an allergic reaction to pain medicine he was taking for a broken hand. Doctors reportedly tried to induce vomiting.
Owens, one of the league's top receivers during his 11-year NFL career, is best known for wild stunts on the field and other publicity-seeking antics off it.
When the Cowboys signed him to a $25 million, three-year deal in March, they said their background checks indicated no red flags. In fact, team consultant Calvin Hill – who mostly deals with troubled players – said during training camp that his department was not involved with Owens because he didn't have a history of those kinds of problems.
He missed most of training camp, and three of four preseason games, because of a hamstring injury. He was late for work during his recovery and was fined for it, but Owens laughed it off, saying he overslept. He said it had happened before, though not with Dallas, and would probably happen again.
Owens broke the bone leading to his right ring finger during a game a week ago Sunday. The next day, doctors screwed in a plate so the bone could heal without fear of further damage. Cowboys coach Bill Parcells said last week that the pain medicine made Owens ill.
Owens had not practiced since the injury, but because Dallas had a bye this past weekend he did not miss a game. He was expected to practice Wednesday, and Parcells had said there was a chance Owens could play Sunday against Tennessee.
Owens had been especially looking forward to the Cowboys' game after that – Oct. 8, in Philadelphia, against the team that dumped him midway through last season only months after he helped them nearly win the Super Bowl.
Owens was seen laughing and joking on the practice field Tuesday morning. He chatted briefly with reporters in the locker room in the afternoon and seemed fine. A 2-inch scar on the top of his hand was puffy but not wrapped, and he said the swelling was doing down.
While in the locker room, he took a pill from a white paper bag and looked at another medicine bottle that was in the bag. He also called a business partner about a towel-wrap venture they're starting and joked to TV cameras that he wasn't talking until Wednesday and today was only Tuesday.
"My little boy knows better than that," he said, laughing, as he plopped onto a sofa in the middle of the locker room.
Also Tuesday, Owens was involved in launching a national campaign for the National Alliance to End Abuse, an organization aimed at helping at-risk youngsters. He appeared at a high school Tuesday morning and was scheduled to visit others but had to cancel because of changes in the team's practice schedule.
A hospital spokeswoman said early Wednesday there was no patient registered as Terrell Owens, although federal privacy laws allow people to block their name from being released. Owens' publicist and agent, and the Cowboys, did not return repeated calls from The Associated Press. No teammates or Cowboys officials were seen entering the hospital late Tuesday night.