Former NFL TE Turned Sex Offender Kellen Winslow, Jr. Pleas For Reduced Prison Sentence, Cites CTE

(Warning: Details involving graphic sexual content included)

Former NFL tight end Kellen Winslow, Jr. is seeking a reduced jail sentence, citing CTE as a reason for his wrongdoings under a new California law, Assembly Bill 124.

The 39-year-old Winslow received a 14-year sentencing in 2019 after pleading guilty to charges of rape, indecent exposure, and lewd contact involving five different women.

Winslow submitted a habeas corpus (a report of unlawful detention) where he cites repeated physical trauma from his 10 seasons in the NFL as a determinant in his sex crimes, also citing CTE.


Prosecutors shared harrowing accounts of Winslow stalking and befriending women with intent of sexual violence. One of these cases involved a homeless woman in Encinitas, Calif. who was raped by Winslow. All cases of rapes involving the five women happened between 2013 and 2018. Winslow pleaded guilty to avoid a life sentence.

Winslow submitted a handwritten letter to the San Diego County Superior Court in November:

Petitioner contends he suffered physical trauma as a result from mild traumatic brian (sic) disorder, as well as potentially CTE, and this trauma was a contributing factor in the commission of the offense. Petitioner now seeks a remand for re-sentencing based on AB 124. Petitioner argues because physical trauma contributed to the offenses … the court is required to impose the lower term (of the sentencing considerations).

“The vulnerability of the victims was no accident,” said San Diego County Superior Court Judge Blaine Bowman in 2019. “It was the type of victim that you sought out yourself because you felt that perhaps they wouldn’t report the crime” or “wouldn’t be deemed credible by the jurors.”

State records detail that Winslow is not eligible for parole until 2028.

Written by

Alejandro Avila lives in Southern California and previously covered news for the LA Football Network. Jeopardy expert and grumpy sports fan. Known for having watched every movie and constant craving for dessert. @alejandroaveela (on X)