Ex-Wizards Player Rasual Butler Killed in LA Car Crash - NBC4 Washington

Ex-Wizards Player Rasual Butler Killed in LA Car Crash

Rasual Butler played with the Wizards in 2014-15

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    Ex-Wizards Player Rasual Butler Killed in LA Car Crash
    Getty Images/Rob Carr
    Garrett Temple #17 looks on as Rasual Butler #8 of the Washington Wizards celebrates a shot against the Minnesota Timberwolves during the first half at Verizon Center on December 16, 2014 in Washington, DC.

    Former Washington Wizards player Rasual Butler and a woman in his car were killed in an early morning crash in Los Angeles, the LA County Coroner confirmed Wednesday.

    Butler was 38. The female victim was identified in a statement by the Los Angeles Clippers as his wife, Leah LaBelle.

    The car crashed into a shopping plaza in Studio City, according to the Los Angeles Police Department North Hollywood division.

    Police received a call at about 2:30 a.m. of a car into a building on the 11000 block of Ventura Boulevard. The vehicle was traveling at speeds two to three times higher than the limit, according to police.

    The vehicle struck a curb and tumbled over until it crash-landed in the plaza.

    Officials are investigating the cause of the crash.

    Butler played with the Wizards in 2014-15, averaging 7.7 points. He also played for the San Antonio Spurs, Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Clippers and others.

    The Miami Heat posted a tweet Wednesday indicating Butler's wife, Leah LaBelle, who once appeared on"American Idol," was the passenger killed in the crash.

    "We are deeply saddened by the passing of Rasual Butler and his wife, Leah LaBelle. Our sincere condolences, thoughts and prayers go out to the family and many friends of Rasual and Leah. They will be missed," the team wrote.

    The Wizards tweeted the following statement:

    "The Wizards organization sends our thoughts and deepest condolences to the family and frineds of Rasual Butler and his wife, Leah. During his time wiht the Wizards and throughout his career, Rasual was a great teammate, a positive member of the community and a consumate professional. He will be remembered fondly and missed throughout the entire NBA family."

    Several Wizards players also expressed their sympathies on social media.

    The coroner would not confirm the identity of Butler's passenger because her family had not been notified.

    NBC4 had not independently verified with authorities that LaBelle was the second victim in the crash.

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