Reporting Mike Fisher
CINCINNATI (CBSDFW.COM) - While his Dallas Cowboys teammates made a joyless flight to Cincinnati for Sunday’s game against the Bengals, defensive tackle Josh Brent was preparing a statement from jail after having been arrested for intoxication/manslaughter after the car he was driving crashed and killed teammate and friend Jerry Brown.
“I am devastated and filled with grief,” Brent said in the statement. “Filled with grief for the loss of my close friend and teammate, Jerry Brown. I am also grief-stricken for his family, friends and all who were blessed enough to have known him. I will live with this horrific and tragic loss every day for the rest of my life. My prayers are with his family, our teammates and his friends at this time.”
Irving Police said that Brent, 24 and scheduled to start Sunday’s game at nose tackle, was driving at high speed on Highway 114 at 2:21 a.m. when his 2007 Mercedes hit a curb, causing the vehicle to flip at least one time before coming to rest in the middle of the service road.
Brown, 25, and a linebacker on the Cowboys practice squad, was in the passenger seat and was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital a short time later. Brent sustained “minor scrapes” and was booked into the Irving jail, where he remained on Saturday awaiting arraignment, police said.
“Officers at the scene believed alcohol was a contributing factor in the crash,” a police spokesman said, adding that Brent was given a sobriety test.
Sources told 105.3 The Fan that Brent and Brown may have been among a group of a dozen Cowboys who gathered at the club Privae for a performance by comedian Shawn Wayans. Sources also suggest that the third-year pro Brent was allowing his former University of Illinois teammate Brown live with him as a houseguest.
Police said when they arrived on the scene, Brent was attempting to remove Brown from the burning vehicle.
The charge against Brent is punishable in Texas by two to 20 years in prison and a fine up to $10,000. Brent spend a month in jail in college and was suspended from school for a 2009 drunk-driving charge.
Cowboys players were informed of some details of the incident early on Saturday morning. Just after noon, after the team had boarded the team charter bound for Cincinnati – with Brent’s assigned season 27F vacant – non-team personnel (media and guests) were asked to deplane. Coach Jason Garrett spoke with the team during that 10-minute session. Fox Sports is reporting that the Cowboys had staffers with backgrounds in law enforcement and counseling aboard the plane.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones issued a statement expressing his condolences to Brown’s family.
“We are deeply saddened by the news of this accident and the passing of Jerry Brown. Our hearts and prayers and deepest sympathies are with the members of Jerry’s family and all of those who knew him and loved him.”
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