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T.O. attempts suicide

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DALLAS (AP) -- Flamboyant Dallas Cowboys receiver Terrell Owens tried to kill himself by overdosing on pain medication, police said, even putting two more pills into his mouth after a friend intervened.

 

A Dallas police report released Wednesday morning said Owens told his friend "that he was depressed." Details of the report were first released by WFAA-TV.

 

The friend, who is not identified in the report, "noticed that (his) prescription pain medication was empty and observed (Owens) putting two pills in his mouth," the police report said.

 

The friend attempted to pry them out with her fingers, then was told by Owens that before this incident he'd taken only five of the 40 pain pills in the bottle he'd emptied. Owens was asked by rescue workers "if he was attempting to harm himself, at which time (he) stated, `Yes."'

 

Owens was hospitalized late Tuesday because of what his publicist said was an allergic reaction to pain medicine he was taking for a broken hand. Doctors reportedly tried to induce vomiting.

 

Owens is recovering from a broken right hand he hurt a week ago Sunday. He had an operation the next day to have a plate screwed in, enabling the bone to heal without being further injured. Dallas Cowboys coach Bill Parcells said last week that the pain medicine made Owens ill.

 

The Cowboys were off this past weekend and Owens was back at practice Tuesday, although he worked out on his own. Parcells said Owens' hand was improving and he was expected back on the practice field Wednesday. Owens chatted briefly with reporters in the locker room Tuesday afternoon and seemed fine.

 

Owens, one of the league's top receivers during his 11-year NFL career, is best known for wild stunts on the field and other publicity-seeking antics off it.

 

When the Cowboys signed him to a $25 million, three-year deal in March, they said their background checks indicated no red flags. In fact, team consultant Calvin Hill -- who mostly deals with troubled players -- said during training camp that his department was not involved with Owens because he didn't have a history of those kinds of problems.

 

Dallas police officials said they were planning a news conference later Wednesday, did not immediately release a time. A hospital spokeswoman said early Wednesday there was no patient registered as Terrell Owens, although federal privacy laws allow people to block their name from being released.

 

Owens' publicist and agent, and the Cowboys, did not return repeated calls from The Associated Press. No teammates or Cowboys officials were seen entering the hospital late Tuesday night.

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Update: Owens held a press conference earlier to put the rumours to rest. He did not try to kill himself.

DALLAS (AP) - Flamboyant Dallas Cowboys receiver Terrell Owens denied a police report he attempted suicide, saying he became groggy after mixing painkillers with supplements.

 

He said Wednesday the confusion likely stemmed from an empty bottle of pain medication found by his publicist, who was with him at the time and called 911. He said the rest of the pills were in a drawer. "I was non-responsive when she made that call," Owens said. "She made the call out of her judgment for my well-being."

 

Appearing in a news conference at team headquarters a few hours after leaving a hospital for what a police report described as "a drug overdose," Owens wore workout gear and no bandage on his broken right hand. The star receiver smiled and seemed more amused than peeved at the latest ruckus surrounding him.

 

Owens blamed a combination of hydrocodone, a generic form of Vicodin, with all-natural supplements for making him ill.

 

"It's very unfortunate for it to go from an allergic reaction to a suicide attempt," he said.

 

Owens was released from the hospital before noon. He flashed a thumbs-up to reporters as he left, went home, then made it to team headquarters in time to catch passes from quarterback Drew Bledsoe.

 

Rescue workers arrived at Owens' home around 8 p.m. Tuesday and took him to an emergency room. When word spread, publicist Kim Etheredge said it was an allergic reaction.

 

But the story shifted Wednesday morning when several media outlets received a police report - that had yet to be released by the authorities - saying Owens had attempted suicide by overdosing on the painkillers, even putting two more pills into his mouth after an unidentified friend, later identified as Etheredge, intervened.

 

The police document, first reported by WFAA-TV, said Owens was asked by rescue workers "if he was attempting to harm himself, at which time (he) stated: 'Yes."'

 

When officially released by police, about half the document was blacked out, including the phrases "attempting suicide by prescription pain medication" and "a drug overdose," as well as the details of Owens having two pills pried from his mouth and Owens saying "Yes" when asked if he intended to harm himself.

 

"I wasn't coherent as they probably thought I was," Owens said. "A number of people were asking me questions. I don't remember the police officers that were in there or the doctors that were in there."

 

Owens said he feels capable of playing Sunday in Tennessee, despite this incident and his broken hand. He added that he's "not depressed about anything" and that he expects to practice Thursday.

 

Etheredge also appeared at Owens' news conference, saying she "did not take anything out of his mouth."

 

"This is sad," she said. "Terrell had a reaction to different pills, and just to state he was trying to commit suicide it was unfair."

 

"Terrell has 25 million reasons why he should be alive," she added, referring to the $25 million, three-year contract he signed in March with the Cowboys.

 

"I'm just upset," Etheredge added. "I feel they take advantage of Terrell. Had this been someone else, this may not have happened."

 

Dallas police officials declined to comment on Etheredge's denials. "We can't discuss the police report because of privacy laws," said a spokesman, Sgt. Gil Cerda.

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