Johnny Manziel indicted in alleged attack on ex-girlfriend
Former Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel was indicted by a grand jury on Tuesday on a misdemeanor charge stemming from a domestic violence complaint by his ex-girlfriend.
The 2012 Heisman Trophy winner and Texas A&M star was accused by ex-girlfriend Colleen Crowley of hitting her and threatening to kill her during a night out on Jan. 30. Crowley said in court documents that Manziel struck her so hard that she temporarily lost hearing in one ear.
The indictment accuses Manziel of striking Crowley and "forcing [her] into a vehicle and against a vehicle dashboard."
Manziel faces a charge of misdemeanor assault related to family violence. If found guilty, he faces up to one year in jail and a $4,000 fine.
An attorney for Manziel, Robert Hinton, told the Associated Press on Tuesday that the way the indictment has been handled so far suggests there are problems with the case and that his client will plead not guilty.
"If this were Johnny Smith, the district attorney's office would have declined to accept the case, in my judgment," Hinton said in a phone interview Tuesday. "This is not a very credible case. As a matter of fact, it's incredible. There's just not much to it."
Hinton said he thought police and prosecutors had treated the case as though they didn't want it to go forward. Lawyers who aren't involved in the case have noted that Dallas police chose to refer their case to a grand jury rather than arrest Manziel outright, which is unusual for misdemeanor cases.
Hinton said he did not anticipate making a deal to end the case before trial, though he said talks of any deal were premature.
Jim Darnell, another of Manziel's attorneys, issued a statement Tuesday saying his client "will be acquitted at the conclusion of this case."