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Former Chiefs assistant Britt Reid cut the line into the NFL, now he cut the line out of prison

Britt Reid, left, walks to a courtroom with his attorney J.R. Hobbs, right, on Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022, at the Jackson County Courthouse to be sentenced for a drunk driving conviction, in Kansas City, Missouri. The former assistant coach and son of head coach Andy Reid in September pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated and causing a 2021 crash that severely injured a 5-year-old girl. (Tammy Ljungblad/The Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Britt Reid, left, is out of jail after serving 16 months of an initial three-year sentence for driving while intoxicated in 2021. (Tammy Ljungblad/The Kansas City Star/Tribune News Service via Getty Images) (Kansas City Star via Getty Images)

On Feb. 4, 2021, Britt Reid was a 35-year-old assistant for the Kansas City Chiefs, where his dad, Andy, was and is the head coach.

On that day, Britt got drunk while working in the team facility. He then attempted a half hour commute home.

He didn’t make it a mile before slamming his pickup truck, traveling 84 miles an hour, into two cars parked on the side of an interstate on-ramp. One car was having trouble and the other came to help.

Britt Reid injured six that day, including himself. Four were initially hospitalized in serious condition, including a then 4-year-old girl.

The fifth victim was then 5-year-old Ariel Young, who Reid sent into an 11-day coma and a lifetime of challenges.

Reid was eventually given a three-year prison sentence, a plea deal down from the maximum seven-year stint. Ariel’s family fumed at that, but it only got worse. Like seemingly everything in this story, even meager consequences didn’t stick.

Last week, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson commuted Reid’s sentence after just 16 months served. Parson has since ducked the local media to explain his rationale. His office didn’t respond to a comment request from Yahoo Sports.

Ariel’s attorney, Tom Porto of the Popham Law Firm, however, says he knows why Britt Reid is out early.

“It’s because the Governor of Missouri is a Chiefs fan, went to the Super Bowl, went to the after parties, went to the parade and the rally and even has a Chiefs tattoo,” Porto told Yahoo Sports.

Can three Super Bowl victories get your son out of jail early? Perhaps. In Kansas City, the Chiefs run a self-described kingdom. What does a governor matter against that?

“It seems the laws don’t apply equally to the haves and have-nots,” Ariel’s mother, Felicia Miller said in a statement. “The haves get favors. The have-nots serve their sentence.”

The family reached a financial agreement last year with the Chiefs to help provide financial support for Ariel’s recovery. Now 8 years old, Young still has balance issues, vision problems and attends special needs classes, according to Porto.

“Ariel is dealing with the effects of her injuries to this day and there is an understanding of the lifelong deficits she is facing,” Porto said.

Parson didn’t bother to call the family or their attorney and let them know he was springing Reid early. They heard it through the news. Of course, Britt himself never offered them an apology, at least not until he was standing in front of a sentencing judge, 21 months after he nearly killed them all.

The only defense of Parson’s decision came via a statement from his office, which noted Reid had completed a prison “alcohol abuse treatment program.”

Great. Everyone should hope it will take, but this isn’t Britt Reid's first time through either rehab (including high-end private ones) or prison. He previously served just five months of a 23-month sentence for brandishing a gun during a road rage incident in Pennsylvania, when Andy coached the Philadelphia Eagles. Britt Reid also has a prior DUI and drug possession charge.

Reid's commutation letter read, in part, that he'd “served more prison time [16 months] than most individuals convicted of similar offenses.”

KANSAS CITY, MO - FEBRUARY 05: Missouri State Governor Mike Parson greets fans during the Kansas City Chiefs Victory Parade on February 5, 2020 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Kyle Rivas/Getty Images)
Missouri Gov. Mike Parson greets fans during the Kansas City Chiefs' Super Bowl victory parade on February 5, 2020 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Kyle Rivas/Getty Images) (Kyle Rivas via Getty Images)

So now Britt Reid is some martyr? Of course Parson’s office has provided no data to back up its claim. Reporting by the Kansas City Star suggests it isn’t accurate and Reid got a favorable deal.

From the start this tragedy has been about favoring the offender not the victim. It’s been about endless second chances and excuses for a NFL coaching nepo baby, but cursory concern for the actual innocent child.

It’s been about protecting the powerful from revealing or even acknowledging their truth but just cursory concern for the powerless.

Ariel’s family is working class and lives in Missouri, supposedly the people Parson represents. Britt Reid lived in a rich suburb in Kansas, but obviously the Kingdom’s connections run deeper than state residency.

And yes, Parson, a former small county sheriff, has pardoned and commuted hundreds of sentences, but how did a repeat offender with a lifetime of addiction issues and less than two years remaining make the list? No one can explain it.

Jean Peters Baker, a Democratic prosecutor in Jackson County (Missouri) stated Parson did a favor for a man of “status, privilege and connections.” Jay Ashcroft, a Republican Secretary of State, said it was “not a good look.”

“There is bipartisan support for this being complete [expletive],” Porto said. “Everybody in the country feels this way.”

Britt Reid didn’t get to be the Chiefs linebackers coach because he was qualified for such a coveted position — NFL assistant is a top 1 percent of all coaching jobs. Britt’s only outside “professional” experience was as a graduate assistant at Temple from 2011-12.

He cut the line into the NFL. He cut the line out of prison.

It’s just enablement at both ends of the spectrum.

And it may extend beyond Britt Reid. The Chiefs initially stated they would “review” what happened in its facility that day. There is extensive security and surveillance in all NFL buildings and since this took place during COVID restrictions, cameras were truly everywhere. And that’s in addition to interviewing everyone.

Was Britt secretly drinking inside the team facility or was it out in the open? Did anyone else know that day? How about any day, since this was a problem employee with addiction issues? Is there a culture of drinking on the job there?

The Chiefs have never said and never revealed a thing. They’ve declined or not responded to questions throughout.

Meanwhile, the NFL stated it would look into the situation as well, but like the Chiefs it has gone silent.

This, the NFL, is an organization that will investigate the personal lives of players or hire entire law firms to look into some organizations. It holds a so-called “Commissioner’s Exempt List” to dole out discipline without much protocol. It once fought all the way to federal court over the inflation level of some footballs in New England.

Yet on this, a real-world issue impacting real-world families, a tragedy that every team could learn from, the league has never commented on if it even looked into, let alone found anything. Of late, it doesn’t even respond to requests for comment on the topic.

Everyone seemingly wants it to just fade away, memories blinded by the glimmer of all those Lombardi Trophies.

“As a Kansas Citian and a Chiefs fan, we want to cheer for this team and be happy for the success it has,” Porto said. “But this just rips the carpet out from the excitement about the organization.”

It doesn’t appear anyone cares or ever really did. Not the Chiefs. Not the NFL. And certainly not the governor.

They’ll outlast the outrage and put it behind them, even if Ariel Young never will.