Former and NBA player Rasual Butler and his wife, Leah LaBelle, were killed in a car crash early Wednesday morning. Butler was 38 years old.
According to Los Angeles police, at around 2:30 a.m. local time, an SUV carrying two people was traveling down the 11200 block of Ventura Boulevard when it lost control, hit three parking meters and a retaining wall and landed in the parking lot of a strip mall which contains several businesses. Both occupants of the vehicle were pronounced dead at the scene.
The Miami Heat confirmed that Butler and his wife had died.
Former teammate Dwyane Wade expressed his sadness on Twitter.
Butler was drafted by the Miami Heat in 2002, and he went on to play for the Hornets, Clippers, Bulls, Raptors, Pacers, Wizards and Spurs in his 13 NBA seasons. He had career averages of 7.5 points and 2.4 rebounds, while shooting 36 percent on 3-pointers. He most recently played in the inaugural season of the BIG3 basketball league last summer.
The BIG3 released the following statement:
"We're deeply saddened by the tragic passing of Rasual Butler and his wife Leah LaBelle. Rasual was an instrumental part of the inaugural BIG3 season and his wonderful wife Leah who was always there to cheer him on courtside. More importantly off the court, he was a kind and thoughtful person who was a dedicated family man and role model who always wanted to make a difference in the community. They are both beloved members of the BIG3 family and we are heartbroken by this incomprehensible loss. Our thoughts are with their family and close friends."