Former Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman Junior Siavii was found dead in a Kansas prison on Thursday as he was awaiting trial … officials said Friday.
He was 43 years old.
The defensive tackle later signed with the Dallas Cowboys in 2008 and was with the team off and on through 2010. The Seattle Seahawks then claimed him off waivers in 2010, setting a career-high in tackles before he was injured and was released in 2011.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons told the Kansas City Star that Siavii was discovered unresponsive at a federal prison in Leavenworth on Thursday afternoon.
The spokesperson said Siavii was taken to a nearby medical facility where he was pronounced dead.
Further details surrounding the death are unclear … though The Star did report that the spokesperson said no other staffers or inmates were injured.
Siavii — real name Saousoalii Siavii — was being held at the prison after he was hit with multiple criminal charges in 2019.
Court documents say police were called to a parking lot on U.S. 40 Highway where Siavii was getting out of a stolen vehicle. Officers said Siavii disregarded their commands, and an officer deployed his Taser on Siavvi twice.
Police found a loaded pistol, ammunition and other drugs in Siavii’s possession. The complaint cites other incidents in which Siavii was arrested while in possession of illegal drugs and firearms.
Siavii was picked in the second round of the 2004 NFL Draft out of Oregon by the Kansas City Chiefs … and he later went on to play in 16 games for the Dallas Cowboys in 2009.
He spent one season with the Seahawks in 2010, before his career NFL ended in 2011.