NFL Player Given Second Chance After Drunk Driving Accident Killed Teammate Jerry Brown
The Dallas Cowboys moved Josh Brent to its active roster two years since his decision to drive drunk ended in a horrific accident and the death of his good friend and teammate, Jerry Brown. The Cowboys defensive tackle has been held out from his first two games of elibibility — including that blow out loss to the Eagles on Thanksgiving — but has a one-year contract with the team through 2015.
Josh Brent seems genuinely heartbroken over the death of his
friend and he has verbally taken responsibility for his actions. But,
through all the fanfare and excitement of having a star football player
back on the field, few seem to remember his history of drunk driving.
Mr. Brent served half his 60-day jail term for a DUI on a suspended
license in 2009. Last year, Mr. Brent failed two drug tests while awaiting
trial on the intoxication manslaughter charges.
Yet, he will nonetheless go back to earning a $745,000 salary after only a brief suspension from his dream career. This sends the message to Dallas Cowboy fans that, with the right credentials, drunk driving can be overlooked — not just once, but twice, in this case.
The DUI Crash that Killed Dallas Cowboy Practice Squad Linebacker
During the evening before the December 8, 2012 crash, Mr. Brent
and Mr. Brown had been out drinking. Prosecutors claim the 320-pound
football player drank a shocking 17 drinks before getting behind the
wheel. Around 2:30 a.m., Mr. Brent was barreling down Highway 114 in
Irving at 110 mph. His 2007 Mercedes-Benz S60 hit a curb and flipped
over. Police say they came upon the scene as Mr. Brent was pulling his
friend out of the burning car in a desperate attempt to save his life.
Although Mr. Brent suffered only minor injuries, his friend died a
little while later at the hospital. Mr. Brent’s blood alcohol
concentration (BAC) was .18 percent, more than double the legal limit to drive in Texas.
Josh Brent was convicted of intoxication manslaughter and sentenced to 180 days incarceration and 10 years probation. After being released
from jail last June, Mr. Brent spent six weeks in an alcohol addiction
rehabilitation center. Jerry Brown’s mother has been one of Mr. Brent’s most ardent
supporters. She publicly forgave him during his sentencing and advocated for his reinstatement to the NFL team.
The public, the Dallas Cowboys and even the victim’s mother have given
him a third chance. But, the consequences of his drunk driving are forever. A 25-year
old man with a promising career and a baby daughter lost his life
because his friend decided to get behind the wheel while drunk.
Berenson Law Firm Sponsors MADD
Berenson Law Firm is a sponsor of MADD.
We donate a portion of our fees recovered in drunk driving claims to
this vital organization. We hope that we can help end the unnecessary
injuries and deaths that result from drunk driving.