TSN TV Schedule TSN2 TV Schedule
NFL

Former Cowboy Brent convicted of intoxication manslaughter

{eot}
The Canadian Press
1/22/2014 7:11:33 PM
Decrease Text SizeIncrease Text Size
Text Size

DALLAS -- Former Dallas Cowboys player Josh Brent was convicted of intoxication manslaughter Wednesday for a fiery wreck that killed his teammate and close friend, Jerry Brown.

Brent, 25, showed no reaction when he learned the verdict. He was led from the courtroom in handcuffs in front of crying family members who were in the front row of the courtroom gallery.

He faces up to 20 years in prison, though he could also get probation. The sentencing phase was scheduled to begin on Thursday.

Lawyers from both sides remain under a gag order that prevented them from commenting after the proceedings.

Prosecutors say Brent, a defensive tackle, was drunk when he crashed his Mercedes on a suburban Dallas highway in December 2012, killing Brown, a linebacker on the Cowboys practice squad who had also been Brent's teammate at the University of Illinois. Officers who arrived on scene saw Brent trying to pull Brown's body from the wreckage.

Police say Brent's blood alcohol level was tested shortly after the crash at 0.18 per cent, more than twice the legal limit for drivers in Texas. Prosecutors last week argued that the burly, 320-pound defensive tackle had as many as 17 drinks that night of the crash.

Brent's lawyers argued the blood tests used by police were faulty and that Brent could not have drank nearly that much. Attorney George Milner said his client was "guilty of being stupid behind the wheel of a car," not drinking beforehand.

Brent retired from the NFL last year, but his ties to the Cowboys were prominent at trial. Two current players, Barry Church and Danny McCray, testified about hanging out with Brent and Brown, first playing video games, then having dinner and going to Privae, a Dallas nightclub.

Jurors saw video of Brent appearing to hold bottles of Champagne in each hand and credit-card receipts that showed Brent had purchased three bottles. They also saw police dash cam footage of Brent losing his balance during field sobriety tests and occasionally stumbling over his words while talking to officers.

The case now moves to sentencing. Milner has previously said his client should receive probation, and Brown's mother, Stacey Jackson, has said in interviews that she has forgiven Brent. Jackson could testify on Brent's behalf at sentencing.

Prosecutors have indicated they will push for jail time for Brent and have talked about the potential to send a message about intoxication manslaughter. His conviction comes just after weeks of fierce debate about a North Texas teen, Ethan Couch, who received probation for intoxication manslaughter after a wreck that left four people dead. Couch's case, and the so-called "affluenza" defence his attorneys employed, became the subject of fierce, widespread scrutiny.

Dallas County District Attorney Craig Watkins has attended parts of Brent's trial and whispered in prosecutors' ears during the questioning of one witness. Watkins told a sports radio station last year that prosecutors had the responsibility to make sure Brent "loses his freedom."

Brent, a defensive tackle, had played in all 12 games of the 2012 NFL season before the crash. He retired in July.

Brown was signed to the Cowboys' practice squad in the 2012 season.

Josh Brent (Photo: The Canadian Press)

zoom

(Photo: The Canadian Press)
Share This

Share This

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to FarkAdd to TwitterAdd to Stumble UponAdd to Reddit
Print this Story

NFL Top Prospects

Take a look at each prospect's average draft position and most likely landing spot based in TSN.ca's Mock Draft ADP. More...


TSN Digital's Mock Draft | Top prospects; Canadians



Missouri All-American Michael Sam says he is gay, and the defensive end could become the first openly homosexual player in the NFL.


Check out ReOrientation - TSN's special three-part feature examining athletics and homosexuality.


More about ReOrientation

Podcasts

TSN 1050: TSN Drive with Dave Naylor: April 15 - Tim Graham

Tim Graham provides an update on the potential sale of the Buffalo Bills , Donald Trump, when a new stadium will be built, and more.

TSN 1050: NFL Tonight: Andy McNamara and Carlan Gay: April 6th

Andy Mac and Carlan Gay break down the latest news in the NFL.

TSN 1050: NFL Tonight - Andrew Garda- March 27th

Andy McNamara chats with Andrew Garda, Bleacher Report NFL lead writer about Johnny Manziel, college quarterbacks, and NFL Free Agency.


More Podcasts

© 2014
All rights reserved.
Bell Media Television