A coroner examining the remains of Phillip Adams has found the former NFL player had unusually severe traumatic brain disease.
The coroner released the findings after Adams allegedly killed six people in South Carolina and then himself in April, The Associated Press reported.
The damage was found in Adams frontal lobe, WSOC reported.
Adams’ family agreed to have his brain tested for chronic traumatic encephalopathy or CTE.
The study was conducted by Boston University, WSOC reported.
CTE is a degenerative disease that is connected to head trauma and concussions.
CTE can cause violent mood swings and memory loss, the AP reported. It can only be diagnosed during an autopsy and has been found in other football players, boxers and remembers of the military. One study found that of 111 brains of NFL players examined, 110 had the condition.
Police said Adams killed Robert Lesslie; his wife, Barbara, and two of Lesslie’s grandchildren, along with two HVAC technicians who had been working at the Lesslie home.
Police found Adams’ body with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
Adams’ sister had told USA Today after the shootings that her brother’s “mental health degraded fast and terribly bad” and that his family noticed Adams’ temper had worsened and that he had begun neglecting his personal hygiene.
Adams had played in 78 NFL games for six teams over six seasons, after starting his career with the San Francisco 49ers as a seventh-round draft pick from South Carolina State. He also played for New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks, Oakland Raiders and New York Jets before ending his career with the Atlanta Falcons in 2015, the AP reported.
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