Johnny Manziel has been indicted by a Dallas grand jury on a misdemeanor assault charge stemming from a January domestic violence incident with his ex-girlfriend.
The incident started in Manziel's Dallas hotel room early in the morning on Jan. 30. The ex-girlfriend, Colleen Crowley, told law enforcement she tried to leave, but Manziel forced her into his car — bypassing a valet who supposedly ignored her pleas for help. Crowley's affidavit says Manziel struck her in the left ear when she attempted to jump out of the vehicle, which caused her to lose some of her hearing.
According to the Fort Worth Police Department's original press release on the matter, officers showed up to Manziel's residence after Crowley called and said she had concerns about Manziel's wellbeing. She was uncooperative with law enforcement officials when they arrived on the scene, however. Manziel fled the scene on foot before officers were able to locate him with the assistance of helicopters.
The Dallas Police Department acquired surveillance tape of the episode, which likely expedited its investigation, and sent the case to the grand jury.
Jim Darnell, lawyer for Johnny Manziel, says his client will plead not guilty. "We believe Johnny will be acquitted…"— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 26, 2016
In addition to the charges filed against Manziel, a judge signed a protective order earlier this month that states he must stay away from Crowley for two years.
This is the second domestic violence incident Manziel has been involved in over the last several months. In October, police pulled Manziel over after several motorists said they saw him arguing with Crowley on the side of the road. Witnesses told law enforcement Crowley attempted to leave the vehicle while it was still in motion. No arrests were made during the incident, though Manziel told the cops he had a couple of drinks earlier in the day.
It's been a tumultuous two years for Manziel, who was released by the Cleveland Browns on March 11. The one-time Heisman Trophy winner was unable to avoid trouble off the field once the Browns selected him with the 22nd overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. Manziel voluntarily checked himself into rehab shortly after the end of his rookie campaign for undisclosed reasons, but that was far from the end of his erratic behavior.
Manziel's 2015 season ended on a bizarre note, when he was spotted playing blackjack at a casino in Las Vegas prior to the Browns' last game. He also missed a mandatory meeting with team doctors while he was in concussion protocol, which prompted MMQB's Peter King to report the Browns were "so done" with him. New head coach Hue Jackson supposedly shares those feelings, as he reportedly told owner Jimmy Haslam he doesn't want to stake his reputation on Manziel's unreliability.
Now that Manziel has been charged, the NFL is also expected to discipline him for violating the league's personal conduct policy that was instituted after the Ray Rice incident in 2014. Violations involving assault, battery, domestic violence or sexual assault result in a baseline six-game suspension for first offenses.
Manziel is currently a free agent. He has been dumped by two agents since the end of the 2015 season, and Manziel has spent the past few weeks partying in Los Angeles.