Kellen Winslow II, formerly the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and other NFL teams, was sentenced Wednesday to 14 years in prison for multiple sex crimes against women in southern California. Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images Hide caption
Mike Ehrmann / Getty Images
A judge sentenced former NFL tight-end Kellen Winslow II Wednesday to 14 years in prison for rape and other sexual offenses against multiple women in Southern California.
Blaine Bowman, the San Diego County Supreme Court judge who presided over Winslow’s trial, described the former player as a “sexual predator” according to news reports.
His sentence was the maximum allowed under an appeal reached with the San Diego County Attorney’s Office. He has been convicted of violent rape, rape of an unconscious person, assault with intent to commit rape, indecent exposure and lewd behavior in public, reports the Associated Press.
Bowman said Winslow hunted women at particular risk. His victims included a homeless woman he was befriended and then raped, a 54-year-old hitchhiker, and a teen who passed out at a party.
After his first arrest in 2018, Winslow continued to hunt women.
While at a gym hiding his GPS surveillance bracelet, he committed a lewd act in front of a 77-year-old woman. He also exposed himself to his 57-year-old neighbor who worked in the garden.
Winslow’s attorney, Marc Carlos, blamed Pro Bowler’s one-time behavior for recurring head trauma from years of football. CTE, or chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a degenerative brain disease associated with head trauma, has been cited after the misconduct of other famous soccer players. The disease has been linked to unpredictable and violent behavior.
Aaron Hernandez, a former New England Patriots and convicted murderer, had such a severe form of the disease that researchers compared it to other gamers’ brains well into the 1960s. Hernandez died of suicide in prison.
“Depression, anxiety, self-medication, the years and years of head trauma that led to this particular incident,” Carlos said, according to The San Diego Union Tribune.
The judge did not accept Carlos’ defense. Winslow, Bowman said, “hunts down vulnerable victims” to commit such “brazen” crimes.
His victims, speaking during his sentencing, portrayed years of trauma and fear after their attacks.
Winslow, who appeared on videoconference at his hearing, declined to make a major comment prior to his conviction, saying his lawyers advised against it.
He said, “In the future, I plan to tell my story.”
Winslow, a father of two whose wife filed for divorce after his first conviction, must now register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. He shares a name with his father, the narrow end of the Hall of Fame for the San Diego Chargers.
The younger Winslow last played in the NFL in 2013. He was drafted in 2004 by the Cleveland Browns to sixth overall and later played for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the New England Patriots and the New York Jets.