Ex-NFL player Chad Wheeler sentenced to 81 months in prison; survivor of attack reacts

Former NFL player Chad Wheeler has been sentenced to 81 months in state prison for brutally assaulting his girlfriend. The survivor of the attack, Alleah Taylor, expressed her satisfaction with the sentencing and remarked on the rarity of a Black woman receiving justice from a white NFL player. Taylor hopes that her experience will inspire other domestic violence survivors to advocate for themselves and seek justice. Wheeler, who has bipolar disorder and a history of resisting medication, claimed not to remember the incident during the trial.


Survivor of attack said, 'It’s very unheard of that a Black woman was able to get justice from a white NFL player.'

Former Seattle Seahawks player Chad Wheeler has been sentenced to 81 months in state prison for brutally assaulting his girlfriend in January 2021. This case is considered one of the most brutal domestic violence cases in NFL history.

Wheeler strangled his girlfriend unconscious, broke her arm, and left her for dead. The survivor, Alleah Taylor, still bears physical scars from the incident. She attended the sentencing and expressed her gratitude for receiving justice as a Black woman from a white NFL player.

In addition to his prison sentence, Wheeler was also sentenced to 36 months of community custody. The judge ordered that he have no contact with Taylor for life and pay restitution.

Rare testimony at Chad Wheeler's trial

During Wheeler's trial, Alleah Taylor provided rare testimony in domestic violence cases. Often, survivors choose not to press charges or recant their accusations out of fear or a desire to reconcile. Taylor, however, wanted to use her experience to inspire other survivors to advocate for themselves.

She spoke about the importance of not giving up and living in fear. Taylor hopes that her case can serve as an example for other domestic violence survivors and show them that there is another way. Her courage and determination to seek justice resulted in Wheeler's conviction.

Wheeler's mental health issues

Chad Wheeler, who played offensive tackle for the Seattle Seahawks, has a history of mental health issues. He has bipolar disorder and had resisted taking medication for his condition. In July 2022, he experienced another bipolar episode and was found running naked down a road.

During the trial, Wheeler claimed not to remember the assault. Taylor revealed that he had refused to take his medication because he believed it would affect his performance in the NFL. Prosecutors pointed out his history of substance abuse and psychiatric issues, indicating that he disregarded the risks of not taking his medication.

Wheeler's defense strategy focused on his mental health condition, but prosecutors argued that he knew the physical damage he was capable of inflicting. They recommended a longer sentence, but he was ultimately sentenced to 81 months in prison.