File picture of Junior Siavii
NFL Legend Kurt Warner Praises Players For Taking A Knee, Using Their Platforms For Good Photo by NFL via Getty Images

Former National Football League (NFL) player Saousoalii “Junior” Siavii was awaiting trial, but died in a Kansas jail.

US Bureau of Prison spokeswoman Anna Armijo told The Kansas City Star in a statement that the 43-year-old was found unresponsive Thursday around 2.35 pm in the US Penitentiary in Leavenworth. The ex-Kansas City Chiefs player, who was awaiting trial on charges related to federal gun and drug trafficking, was treated by prison staff. The athlete was taken to a hospital where he was declared dead.

Not many details were immediately revealed about the circumstances surrounding Siavii's death. No other inmates or staff members were injured and “at no time was the public in danger," said Armijo.

On Dec. 17, 2021, the athlete, who was drafted 36th overall 2004 NFL Draft by the Kansas City Chiefs, was transferred to the prison with medium-security in Leavenworth.

In August 2019, he was put behind bars after cops saw him driving a vehicle that had been reported stolen in Independence, Kansas. Siavii, who weighed 315 pounds and was 6-foot-5, fought off cops, who tased him two times during the confrontation, said prosecutors. After being finally subdued, he was handcuffed.

An officer had performed a neck restraint on him until he became unconscious. Siavii was found was in possession of marijuana, methamphetamine, a gun and ammunition, reported New York Post. Later, the football player was indicted with eight more people accused of being part of a drug trafficking ring in Missouri.

Before this, Siavii had also been arrested two times while in possession of loaded firearms and illegal drugs.

In 2008, the native of American Samoa signed with the Dallas Cowboys where he intermittently spent time until 2010. The following year he was claimed off waivers by the Seattle Seahawks, but later he got injured and was released.

In a separate incident, Latin Times previously reported that Alabama state authorities were investigating the death of former NFL player Glenn Foster Jr, who died two days after he was taken into police custody last month. The 31-year-old, who died at a medical facility in western Alabama, was arrested after he was seen driving at a very high speed. Following a high-speed car chase and tussle with cops, the former New Orleans Saints player was arrested.

File picture of Junior Siavii
In this handout image provided by the NFL, Junior Siavii of the Dallas Cowboys poses for his 2010 NFL headshot circa 2010 in Irving, Texas. Photo by NFL via Getty Images

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