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Josh Brent arrested after crash kills Cowboys player

Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Josh Brent was charged Saturday with intoxication manslaughter connected to the death of Cowboys practice-squad linebacker Jerry Brown Jr., Irving, Texas, police confirmed to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport.

Irving police confirmed Brent was processed on the charge and released after posting his $50,000 bail Sunday. Intoxication manslaughter is a second-degree felony punishable by two to 20 years of imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000.

Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent faces an intoxicated manslaughter charge following a car crash which claimed the life of teammate Jerry Brown Jr.
Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent faces an intoxicated manslaughter charge following a car crash which claimed the life of teammate Jerry Brown Jr. (Irving Police Department/)

According to a report released by Irving police, Brent was behind the wheel of a car at 2:21 a.m. when it hit a curb, causing the vehicle to flip at least once before coming to rest in the middle of a service road. When officers arrived on the scene, Brent was responsive and able to speak. Brown, 25, was unresponsive and transferred to a local hospital, where he later was pronounced dead.

Officers suspected alcohol played a role in the accident and had Brent perform field sobriety tests. Brent eventually was taken into custody. The charges were altered from driving while intoxicated to intoxicated manslaughter when police learned Brown had died as a result of injuries sustained in the accident.

A statement was released Saturday night on Brent's behalf by his agent, Peter Schaffer:

"I am devastated and filled with grief. Filled with grief for the loss of my close friend and teammate, Jerry Brown," the statement read. "I am also grief-stricken for his family, friends and all who were blessed enough to have known him. I will live with this horrific and tragic loss every day for the rest of my life. My prayers are with his family, our teammates and his friends at this time."

Brent pleaded guilty to a DUI charge in 2009 after he was arrested for speeding while driving under the influence with a suspended license, according to Champaign County, Ill., court records obtained by The Associated Press.

The Cowboys confirmed Brown's death as the team prepared for Sunday's matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones released a statement of condolence:

"We are deeply saddened by the news of this accident and the passing of Jerry Brown. At this time, our hearts and prayers and deepest sympathies are with the members of Jerry's family and all of those who knew him and loved him."

The NFL released the following statement:

"We have been in contact with the Cowboys and have deployed staff members and our independent professional counselors to assist the team in dealing with this tragedy. We are deeply saddened by the loss of Jerry Brown and extend our condolences to his family, friends, and the Cowboys organization."

Brown's family released a statement Sunday, obtained by Fox Sports insider and NFL Network contributor Jay Glazer:

"The family of Jerry Brown Jr. wish to express our sincere appreciation for all of your prayers, phone calls, flowers, visits and other acts of kindness shown during the death of our son. We would also like to send our prayers out to Josh Brent and his family as well. With kindness and love, The Family of Jerry Brown Jr."

Brent and Brown were college teammates at Illinois and were living together in Dallas, a team source told Rapoport. 

Brent is in his third season with the Cowboys. A promising nose tackle, he had been in line to start for injured veteran Jay Ratliff on Sunday.

Brown was signed to the Cowboys' practice squad on Oct. 24. He previously was on the Indianapolis Colts' practice squad before his Oct. 20 release.

Follow Dan Hanzus on Twitter @danhanzus.

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