A King County Superior Court jury found Chad Wheeler, a former Seattle Seahawks reserve tackle, guilty of two domestic violence assault charges for attacking his then girlfriend in 2021 at their Kent apartment.
Wheeler, 29, played in five games for the Seahawks in 2020 before they released him. He played two years for the New York Giants prior to Seattle.
A jury convicted Wheeler Nov. 9 of first-degree domestic violence assault and second-degree domestic violence assault, according to an email from Casey McNerthney, spokesperson for the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office. The jury found Wheeler not guilty of unlawful imprisonment.
Wheeler pleaded not guilty to all charges on Feb. 1, 2021.
Defense attorneys asked that Wheeler remain out of custody pending sentencing, McNerthney said. Prosecutors asked the judge to remand him into custody. The judge remanded him into custody. He is in the county jail at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent, according to jail records.
Wheeler is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 14 by Judge Joe Campagna at the Maleng Regional Justice Center. Prosecutors will seek a mandatory minimum sentence of five years after the jury found via a special verdict that Wheeler used force or means likely to result in death.
Kent Police arrested Wheeler Jan. 22, 2021 after the reported attack in the apartment. He was booked into the King County jail on Jan. 23, 2021 and released three days later after he posted bail, which was set at $400,000. A judge ordered Wheeler to remain in the King County area (King, Pierce and Snohomish counties) while on electronic home detention.
According to court documents, Wheeler attacked his then girlfriend at about 9:46 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2021 in their Kent unit at the Berkeley Heights Apartments, 22804 90th Way S., that they shared since November 2020. Officers responded to multiple 911 calls, including one from Wheeler’s girlfriend who reported that she was being “killed.”
Officers arrived at the apartment and heard screaming from inside. Officers forced their way into the apartment and saw a pool of blood on a bed comforter adjacent to a bathroom, where they found Wheeler and his then girlfriend. Her face was covered in blood and her left arm limp at her side, according to court documents.
Wheeler was standing behind her and said, “Sorry, I don’t beat women,” as officers tried to detain him. Wheeler, who is 6 feet 7 inches and at the time of the attack weighed 310 pounds, battled with officers to stop them from handcuffing him, according to court documents. He fought off three officers in the bathroom and was only detained after officers used hand strikes and fired Tasers at him.
Paramedics transported the woman to Valley Medical Center in Renton. She suffered a fractured left arm and dislocated elbow. She had experienced chest pain and had difficulty breathing. She also had a swollen face.
The woman told police she believed Wheeler suffered from bi-polar disorder and had not been taking his medication.