CLEVELAND — Despite disturbing allegations that he struck his ex-girlfriend, troubled Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel has not been charged with a crime and two Texas police departments have closed their cases on a possible assault.
Manziel, who will be released by Cleveland next month, ending two turbulent NFL seasons, was being investigated for allegedly striking Colleen Crowley last weekend. She told police in Fort Worth that Manziel struck her "several times" and that the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner acted "as if he were on some kind of drugs," but she maintained he was not intoxicated.
A police report released Thursday provided the first details of the altercation that took place between Manziel and Crowley, first at a hotel in Dallas and then as the couple drove back to her Fort Worth apartment. Both police departments investigated the incident but didn’t charge Manziel.
"It was determined that no reported criminal offence occurred within Fort Worth’s jurisdiction," Sgt. Steve Enright said in an email to The Associated Press.
Dallas police issued a statement Thursday night saying they conducted "the appropriate investigative follow-up to the report forwarded to us by the Ft. Worth Police Department regarding an alleged incident involving Johnny Manziel. Investigative efforts to date have not resulted in the filing of a criminal complaint and the incident is determined to be closed."
Manziel may have scrambled from league worry. However, he’s facing punishment by the NFL, which is investigating the incident. League spokesman Greg Aiello said in an email to the AP that "we are aware of the police report. Our review is continuing."
It’s the second time since October that Manziel has been under review by the league for a domestic incident. He was cleared of wrongdoing after police were called when he and Crowley got into a heated roadside argument in Avon, Ohio.
Crowley told Fort Worth police that Manziel was "aggressive" toward her after they were out with friends on Friday night at the Zaza Hotel. She said he struck her, including once in the left ear, before they drove back to Fort Worth and he was physical with her during the ride. According to the police report, Crowley was "somewhat vague on the details of the assault."
Crowley said she later fled her apartment early Saturday and ran to a neighbour’s for help in an attempt to get away from Manziel, who fled the scene on foot.
Manziel told TMZ Sports on Thursday night that he didn’t strike Crowley and added that he was not a threat to her or himself.
"I’m completely stable," he told TMZ, which did not provide any video of its interview. "I’m safe and secure."
Crowley’s concern for Manziel’s well-being prompted Fort Worth police to send out a helicopter to locate the 23-year-old QB. Police also tried calling both Manziel and his parents, who could not be reached. An officer finally contacted Manziel’s father, Paul, who said he had seen his son and that "he was doing fine."
The police blacked out several details in their report.
Earlier this week, the Browns released a statement saying they were troubled by Manziel’s actions and indicated they will release him in March.
"We’ve been clear about expectations for our players on and off the field," said Sashi Brown, the Browns’ vice-president of football operations. "Johnny’s continual involvement in incidents that run counter to those expectations undermines the hard work of his teammates and the reputation of our organization. His status with our team will be addressed when permitted by league rules."
Manziel has been a major disappointment and distraction during two turbulent seasons with Cleveland.
He didn’t live up to expectations on the field, and his behaviour off it has embarrassed the team. Manziel spent more than 10 weeks last winter in a rehab facility specializing in alcohol and drug abuse.
Once the Browns let him go, and assuming he hasn’t been suspended by the league, Manziel will be able to sign with another team. But his latest transgressions may have tarnished him too much to touch.