On Friday night, February 5, 2016, police in Dallas announced they were opening a criminal investigation focusing on the domestic violence assault complaint filed against 23-year-old Johnny Manziel over the past weekend, according to KSLA News. Also on Friday, the NFL quarterback’s father, Paul Manziel, expressed his concern over his son’s plight, indicating he feared for his life.
The elder Manziel told The Dallas Morning News, “I truly believe if they can’t get him help, he won’t live to see his 24th birthday.” The news outlet also revealed that last week Manziel twice refused to enter Dallas area rehabilitation centers, according to his father.
Paul Manziel informed The Dallas Morning News he initially urged his son to admit himself to the Enterhealth Ranch in Van Alstyne, Texas on Saturday, but the football star refused. This came just one day after police were called over an alleged altercation between Manziel and his ex-girlfriend, Colleen Crowley, 23.
For a short time after the incident, officers were unable to locate Manziel. They became concerned after Crowley told police she was worried about Manziel’s well-being, so authorities used their helicopter in the search. He was subsequently found safe and was not arrested, but the Dallas Police Department told NBC5 that “a possible offense” may have taken place.
On Tuesday, Paul Manziel stated he attempted to get his son admitted to Carollton Springs Hospital, but the athlete left the facility, leaving the elder Manziel distressed over the fact that the center allowed the NFL player to leave. The Dallas Morning News notes that Paul Manziel indicated he told the Denton County Sheriff he believed his son was suicidal, but an information officer with the department stated there was no record of him contacting the office.
According to KSLA News, Dallas police are investigating to determine if Manziel will face criminal charges regarding the alleged assault last weekend. This was likely prompted because of the information obtained by WFAA involving Crowley’s statement to police about the incident. The news media outlet reports that the ex-girlfriend told authorities that Manziel claimed he would kill both of them if she did not “shut up.” She said this took place after “forcing her into a car, hitting her, and dragging her by the hair.”
Manziel adamantly denied any sort of wrongdoing after Crowley’s statement was made public, telling TMZ, “It didn’t happen” and that he did not hit ex-girlfriend Crowley. He also emphasized that he is “…completely stable… safe and secure.” Manziel went on to say that there were great things ahead of him and that he is “…100 percent committed to playing football.”
Despite his commitment, the Heisman Trophy winner was dropped by his agent on Friday, the Salina Journal reports. His now former agent, Erik Burkhardt, said he had “deep regret” about ending their business relationship, but made the difficult decision after “several emotional and very personal discussions with his family, his doctors, and my client himself.”
It appears Manziel may also be dropped by the Cleveland Browns, as the team released a statement on Tuesday indicating it will let the quarterback go on or around March 9, according to the Salina Journal. If this takes place, Manziel will be free to be drafted by other teams. This could be hindered if the NFL determines that Manziel’s behavior violated the organization’s policies regarding domestic violence, according to the Dallas Morning News. The report indicates that if the football player is found to be in violation, “he would be suspended without pay for at least six games for a first offense and would face a lifetime ban from the NFL for a second offense.”
The NFL’s ruling may not come for months and Manziel would have a chance to appeal any type of ordered suspension or ban if either takes place.
[Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images]