Friday, December 18, 2009
Updated: December 19, 5:01 PM ET
Police still investigating Henry's death
ESPN.com news services
Police continued their investigation Friday after they said Chris Henry died of injuries from falling out of the back of a moving pickup truck during a domestic dispute with his fiancee.
In Charlotte, police have yet to file charges or clear his fiancee, Loleini Tonga, of wrongdoing. Charlotte-Mecklenburg police spokeswoman Rosalyn Harrington confirmed that his fiancee stopped after Henry "came out of the back" of the pickup truck she was driving on the curvy stretch of a residential road near the Tonga family home.
"She pulled the vehicle over to get out and assist," Harrington said late Friday.
One 911 caller said she saw a shirtless man with a cast on his arm in the bed of a yellow pickup "beating on the back of this truck window." A later 911 caller told dispatchers he saw an unresponsive man laying in the road.
Harrington said there was "no new info" in the case on Friday. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported the Mecklenburg County Medical Examiner determined Henry died of blunt-force trauma to the head.
Memorial services for Henry will be held Tuesday at the Alario Center in Westwego, La., near downtown New Orleans. Visitation will be from noon-2 p.m. ET, and the funeral service will begin at 2 p.m.
The Bengals will travel to the services via team charter and will return to Cincinnati that evening.
One day after the death of their teammate, the Bengals tried to focus on the field as they prepared for a key game against the Chargers.
Music was playing in the Bengals' locker room as players packed up to leave for California. The team also held a 90-minute afternoon practice.
"It really wouldn't matter where we were at, we're going to pull it together as a family," offensive guard Bobbie Williams said. "Coaches and players included. We're going to ball that fist up and try to deliver a good, solid punch to whoever. If we were here or on the road it doesn't matter. We're going to be that unit."
With a win over the 10-3 Chargers, the Bengals (9-4) will clinch the AFC North title and grab the inside track for the second seed in the conference playoffs.
It's the second time the team has had to deal with a death this season. Vikki Zimmer, the wife of defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, died unexpectedly at the couple's home in October. Three days later, Zimmer coached the defense in a 17-14 win in Baltimore that put the Bengals in control of the AFC North.
Offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth, one of the team captains, said it was good for the team to be together to deal with Henry's death. The team held its holiday gathering as scheduled on Thursday.
"We had enough motivation already and now it's added with the guys trying to live up to his legacy," Whitworth said. "Things go on. We went on with it with Coach Zimmer. It hurts but you have a job as a man and professional and you have to move forward."
Henry, a talented receiver who had a history of off-field problems, was away from the team after being placed on injured reserve last month with a broken forearm.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.