Former Carolina Panthers player Rae Carruth has had a change of heart regarding his son, who nearly died when the then-footballer ordered a hit on his child’s mother 18 years ago.

In a four-page letter to The Charlotte Observer, Carruth said he now realizes he will never have an on-going relationship with his son, Chancellor Lee Adams. Adams has lived under the care of his maternal grandmother, Saundra Adams, since his mother’s untimely death.

“For all involved or invested in this ordeal, please calm down,” Carruth wrote as part of a lengthy letter from prison, his second in the last month. “…I will no longer be pursuing a relationship with Chancellor [and] Ms. Adams … I promise to leave them be, which I now see is in everyone’s best interest.”

Carruth, a star wide receiver for the Panthers, is scheduled to be released from prison this fall after serving almost two decades behind bars for plotting the murder of then-girlfriend Cherica Adams, 24, by hiring a hitman to fatally shoot her in November 1999. Adams was seven months pregnant at the time.

The young mother was shot four times but managed to call 911, saving her and the life of her child while also implicating Carruth in the murder-for-hire plot, The Charlotte Observer reported. Adams would succumb to her injuries a month later, her son managed to survive, thanks to an emergency C-section by doctors.

Chancellor, now 18, suffers from cerebral palsy and has permanent brain damage due to his traumatic birth.

Carruth made headlines late last month when he finally broke his 17-year silence on the shooting, penning a 15-page letter to Charlotte station WBTV asking forgiveness for his transgressions and expressing a want for a relationship his adolescent son.

“I should be raising my son,” he wrote in his initial letter. “His mother should be raising her son … Ms. Adams shouldn’t be doing this, and I want that responsibility back. I feel like he might not ever have his mother in his life but he could still have me.”

“I could still make a difference and I don’t think that’s anyone’s responsibility when I’m still here,” he added.

Grandmother Saundra Adams has raised Chancellor his entire life and has said in past interviews she forgives Carruth for taking her only child. She once told WBTV that she planned to be at the gates with her grandson when Carruth is released from prison in October. All that may change, however, after news of Carruth’s about-face.

According to The Charlotte Observer, Saundra Adams declined to comment on the matter at this time. Tiffany Shears-Trice, a longtime friend and confirmed spokesperson for Carruth’s family said the ex-footballer realizes his son is happy and may be better off without him.

“Rae can see Chancellor is a happy, healthy soul and he doesn’t want to interfere with that,” Shears-Trice said. “But he will still live up to his financial responsibilities for his son – he definitely wants to do that and he will do that. He wants to help.”

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