The NFL is investigating Cleveland Browns quarterback and former Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel after the release of troubling dash-cam footage of an alleged domestic violence incident in Avon, Ohio, CBS reported on Tuesday.
In the footage, seen above, Manziel’s girlfriend Colleen Crowley is heard to say that he hit her more than once and that she is “in fear for my life.”
Browns coach Mike Pettine said that the league was investigating the incident, which did not result in any charges after Crowley told an officer “I don’t want to make a big deal” out of the incident.
Crowley told the officer that Manziel had hurt her “several times” and that she threw his wallet out the window. She also told police that “Manziel pushed her head against the glass of the car” and that he “hit her a couple of times,” and she had an abrasion on her wrist. “Police let the couple go, unable to determine the primary aggressor,” CBS reported.
Manziel, who went by the nickname “Johnny Football” in high school and during the first-ever Heisman-winning campaign by a freshman in college football history, visited a drug and alcohol rehab center earlier this year.
“She said I was driving too crazy, trying to injure her and hurt her which is not the case at all,” Manziel told police. “As we got right here, she rolled down her window, grabbed my wallet, and threw my wallet here into this field.”
The NFL has struggled with how to deal with allegations of domestic violence and revamped its conduct policies after former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice was caught on tape brutally assaulting his then-fiancée. Rice, who hasn’t played in the NFL since being released by the Ravens after the emergence of that video, had his charges dismissed after going through pretrial intervention.
Greg Hardy, a star defensive lineman who now plays for the Dallas Cowboys, had his ten-game suspension this season for “using physical force against Nicole Holder in at least four instances” reduced to four games earlier this year. Hardy had criminal charges against him dismissed only after he appealed a conviction and Holder decided to stop co-operating with prosecutors.
Hardy has since starred in a stripper-filled rap video and made offensive comments about women, basically seeming completely unrepentant.