Entertainment Sports Former NFL Player Junior Siavii Found Dead in Prison as He Awaited Trial for Various Charges Junior Siavii was awaiting trial for federal gun and drug trafficking charges before his death By Nicholas Rice Nicholas Rice Instagram Twitter Nicholas Rice is an Associate Editor for PEOPLE Magazine. He began working with the brand as an Editorial Intern in early 2020, before later transitioning to a freelance role, and then staff positions soon after. Nicholas writes and edits anywhere between 7 to 9 stories per day on average for PEOPLE, spanning across each vertical the brand covers. Nicholas has previous work experience with Billboard, POPSUGAR, Bustle and Elite Daily. When not working, Nicholas can be found playing with his 5 dogs, listening to pop music or eating mozzarella sticks. People Editorial Guidelines Published on January 15, 2022 10:18 AM Share Tweet Pin Email Photo: NFL via Getty Junior Siavii, a former NFL player, has died in a Kansas prison as he awaited trial for federal gun and drug trafficking charges. He was 43. On Thursday afternoon, around 2:30 p.m. local time, Siavii — aka Saousoalii Siavii — was found unresponsive in the U.S. Penitentiary in Leavenworth, Anna Armijo, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons, told The Kansas City Star. According to the outlet, Siavii was treated by prison staff before he was taken to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead. No other details surrounding the ex-football star's death were immediately made available. Armijo noted that staff and other inmates were not injured and "at no time was the public in danger." Celebrities Who Died in 2022 A representative for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment. Otto Greule Jr/Getty Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Back in August 2019, Siavii was arrested on suspicion of illegal firearms possession during an altercation that occurred with police in Kansas, according to NBC Sports. Not long after, a criminal indictment later named Siavii as being part of a methamphetamine drug trafficking conspiracy in Missouri. Siavii was charged alongside eight other co-defendants, the outlet said. Siavii was transferred to the U.S. Penitentiary at Leavenworth, a medium-security prison, on Dec. 17, The Kansas City Star reported. Want to get the biggest stories from PEOPLE every weekday? Subscribe to our new podcast, PEOPLE Every Day, to get the essential celebrity, entertainment and human interest news stories Monday through Friday. Siavii was selected by The Chiefs in the second round of the NFL draft in 2004. The athlete played two seasons with the team before taking a break from the sport for two years due to knee injuries. Siavii later went on to play for the Dallas Cowboys in 2009, but was cut during preseason in 2010. He then played for the Seattle Seahawks before a spinal cord injury brought his football career to an end in 2011.