July 5, 2009 / 3:34 AM / 10 years ago

Autopsy planned for slain NFL star Steve McNair

NASHVILLE (Reuters) - Autopsies were being performed on Sunday on the bodies of former NFL quarterback Steve McNair and a female friend who were found shot to death on Saturday in a Nashville apartment, police said.

Former Baltimore Ravens quarterback Steve McNair watches from the sidelines after being taken out of the game in the fourth quarter of their NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals in Baltimore, Maryland in this November 11, 2007 file photo. McNair has been found dead in Nashville of a gunshot wound in an apparent murder-suicide, according to local media reports. REUTERS/Joe Giza

McNair, who was 36, was shot multiple times, according to a statement posted late Saturday on the Nashville police website. Sahel Kazemi, 20, was also found dead in the living room of the condominium with a single bullet wound to her head.

A pistol was found near Kazemi’s body. The police offered no possible motive for the killings, and a spokesman was not available for comment on Sunday.

A witness reported that McNair arrived at the condo early Saturday morning. Kazemi’s vehicle was already parked outside, the statement said.

McNair rented the condo with sporting goods dealer Wayne Neeley, who arrived there before 1 p.m. on Saturday and found the two bodies. Neeley called a friend who came to the scene and called the police.

Two days earlier, Kazemi had been arrested in the early hours for driving under the influence. McNair was in the passenger’s seat at the time of the police stop.

McNair, who played 13 seasons in the NFL, was a local hero who did extensive charity work in Nashville. He played mostly with the Tennessee Titans and its predecessor team, the Houston Oilers.

Drafted by the Oilers in 1995 out of Alcorn State College in Mississippi, McNair led the Titans to their only Super Bowl appearance, losing to the St. Louis Rams in 2000.

He was the NFL’s co-MVP in 2003, and was selected for the Pro Bowl three times. McNair ended his career with the Baltimore Ravens and retired after the 2007 season.

According to local press reports, Kazemi had moved to Nashville from her parents home in Florida. She worked as a waitress at a restaurant where she met McNair.

McNair was married and had four sons, one of whom, Steven Jr., is a high school football star who has received offers to play college football.

Writing by Kyle Peterson in Chicago, editing by Alan Elsner

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