Rae Carruth -- the piece of garbage NFL star WR who hired a hitman to kill his pregnant girlfriend -- was released from prison Monday morning, 19 years after the deadly incident.
Rae was a talented football player -- the Carolina Panthers took him in the 1st round of the 1997 NFL Draft and made the NFL All-Rookie Team after a pretty solid rookie season.
But, he threw it all away in Nov. 1999 when he conspired with a gunman to murder 24-year-old Cherica Adams, who was 8 months pregnant with his child.
Officials say Carruth and Adams got in separate cars after a movie date and once they got on the road, he blocked her vehicle so the gunman could have a clean shot.
Adams was hit 4 times but managed to call 911 -- and emergency personnel were able to perform an emergency C-section and save the baby. Cherica died 4 weeks later.
The child, Chancellor Lee Adams, was born with severe cerebral palsy due to trauma from the shooting. He's been raised by Cherica's mother, Saundra, ever since.
Rae was hit with several criminal charges -- but when the time came to turn himself into authorities, he infamously ran like the coward he is. He was later found hiding in the trunk of a car in Tennessee.
Carruth was ultimately convicted of conspiracy to commit murder, attempting to destroy an unborn child and discharging a firearm into occupied property.
He was sentenced to 18 to 24 years in prison.
Carruth -- now 44 years old -- told WBTV in a recent interview he's "excited" to get out of prison but nervous about how he'll be received by the public, acknowledging there is "so much hate and negativity toward me."