Former Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman was arrested Wednesday morning after crashing his black Mercedes sedan and then trying to force entry into his in-laws’ Redmond residence, according to Redmond police and Washington State Patrol.
Sherman, 33, of Maple Valley, was booked into the King County Jail in Seattle on investigation of domestic-violence burglary at 6:08 a.m., jail records show. He is also being investigated for drunken driving and a hit-and-run after he apparently drove into a construction site on Highway 520, struck a concrete barrier, and left the scene in his badly damaged vehicle, according to the State Patrol. The Patrol obtained a warrant for a blood draw and tests to determine his blood-alcohol content are pending.
Sherman is expected to make his first court appearance on Thursday afternoon, at which time a judge will determine if there is probable cause to believe that Sherman committed a crime. The judge could set bail or order that Sherman be released.
Though The Seattle Times typically does not identify suspects before criminal charges are filed, the newspaper is identifying Sherman because he is a public figure.
A woman who identified herself as Sherman’s wife in a 911 call to the King County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday night told a dispatcher Sherman had been drinking and had threatened to kill himself, according to a recording of the call obtained through a public disclosure request. In a subsequent call, she said Sherman may have been going to her parents’ house in Redmond and confirmed she called ahead to tell them.
The sheriff’s office notified Redmond police and the State Patrol that Sherman was possibly traveling to the Eastside city, according to Redmond police and recorded calls between the police agencies also released by the sheriff’s office.
At a joint news conference Wednesday afternoon, Redmond Police Chief Darrell Lowe and State Patrol Captain Ron Mead provided additional details of events that led up to Sherman’s arrest.
At 1:26 a.m. Wednesday, the Patrol received a 911 call from a construction worker, who reported that a possibly impaired driver had driven into a closed construction zone on eastbound Highway 520, just before the exit onto 148th Avenue Northeast, and struck a concrete barrier, Mead said. The driver left and a member of the work crew located the heavily damaged vehicle a half mile away in a parking lot and called 911 to relay the information to troopers, he said.
The driver’s side of the car “had pretty extensive damage,” said Mead. One of the tires was nearly completely separated from the car, which had been driven until it was no longer operable, he said. By the time troopers arrived about 10 minutes later, the driver was no longer there and troopers began looking for the driver. Mead said a check of the license plate showed the car was registered to Sherman.
Around 1:49 a.m., Redmond police officers responded to a 911 call of a burglary in progress and found Sherman outside a residence in the 18100 block of Northeast 30th Street, said Lowe, the Redmond police chief. He confirmed the house belongs to Sherman’s wife’s parents, which is why Sherman was arrested on investigation of a domestic-violence related burglary.
Lowe said police officers responding to the burglary call parked some distance away from the house and approached on foot. They talked and joked with Sherman for at least 10 minutes but once the officers announced they were arresting him, Sherman attempted to walk away from them, Lowe said.
It was at that point that a police dog was used to place Sherman under arrest; Sherman suffered a cut on his lower leg that was caused by the dog, Lowe said. One officer took Sherman to the ground, Lowe said, adding that one officer also suffered a minor injury. He said Sherman was treated at a hospital before he was booked into jail.
At least four adults were believed to have been inside the residence, but Lowe said he didn’t know who was present. The front door was heavily damaged and Sherman had argued with people inside before police arrived, Lowe said. No one in the residence was harmed, Lowe said.
The house where Sherman was arrested is about 3 miles from the 148th Avenue Northeast exit.
Reached by cellphone, Sherman’s wife, Ashley Moss, was emotionally shaken and declined to discuss specifics of the incident that led to Sherman’s arrest.
“At this time we’re going to make no statements, except he didn’t harm anybody,” Moss said. “My kids were not harmed in the incident. He’s a good person and this is not his character. We’re doing all right, just trying to get him out. I want people to know no one was injured.”
The King County Sheriff’s Office obtained an extreme risk protection order (ERPO) against Sherman earlier this year to bar him from possessing firearms, according to court records. The petition was sealed by a Superior Court judge, so details are unknown. Under state law, ERPOs can be sealed if there are no other active protection orders against the restrained party, no pending violations of the order, and evidence of full compliance with the relinquishment of firearms.
Sherman is an NFL free agent. He was with the San Francisco 49ers the past three years after playing with Seattle from 2011 to 2017. He was a star on the Seahawks’ Legion of Boom defense that reached two Super Bowls and won one.
The NFL Players Association, of which Sherman is a vice president, released a statement Wednesday morning.
“We were made aware of an arrest last night of one of our player leaders for an alleged domestic violence incident and have activated our domestic violence crisis protocol for the protection and support of everyone involved,’’ the statement read. “We will continue to monitor events closely as more facts are made available to us.’’
Sherman’s bio on the NFLPA page states: “Sherman has been a player representative since 2014 and was reelected in 2018 with his current team, the San Francisco 49ers. He was voted onto the NFLPA’s Executive Committee in 2016 and was reelected in 2018 and 2020 to continue his vocal, passionate leadership.’’
Sherman has served as his own agent since negotiating a contract with the 49ers in 2018 following his release by the Seahawks that March.
In a statement this morning, the NFL noted that Sherman remains a free agent but the league will investigate his case for possible discipline.
“Free agents are eligible to sign with any team,” the statement read. “The league investigates any incident involving law enforcement and if there is a violation of the personal conduct policy the player would be facing discipline.”
Sherman has said in several interviews in recent months that he would consider re-signing with the Seahawks.
Seattle coach Pete Carroll said following the draft in May that the team would be open to re-signing Sherman, but at the time had no plans to add cornerbacks.
News researcher Miyoko Wolf and Seattle Times reporter Paige Cornwell contributed to this report.
CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that Sherman was arrested on suspicion of burglary domestic violence, not a charge of burglary domestic violence.