Deadly driving case for Cowboys' Brent goes to Dallas jury

Tue Jan 21, 2014 6:44pm EST
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By Lisa Maria Garza

DALLAS (Reuters) - Jurors on Tuesday began deliberating the fate of former Dallas Cowboys player Josh Brent, who faces an intoxication manslaughter charge for being behind the wheel in a single-car crash that killed his teammate Jerry Brown Jr.

In closing arguments, prosecutors told a Dallas court that Brent, 25, was "the poster child for intoxication manslaughter" for drinking heavily at a private club, driving away and then flipping his Mercedes after slamming into a curb on a state highway at 110 mph.

Defense lawyers told the jury that Brent was reckless but not drunk at the time of the high-speed crash on December 8, 2012.

After the jury left to start deliberations, Brown's mother hugged Brent and wept.

Jurors deliberated for four hours on Tuesday with no verdict. They will reconvene on Wednesday.

Prosecutors on Tuesday played a video taken from a police car's dashboard camera that showed Brent failing a series of field sobriety tests shortly after the crash.

"Ladies and gentleman, in order for you to not believe he wasn't intoxicated, you have to not believe your own eyes and your own ears," prosecutor Jason Hermus told the court.

Brent's blood alcohol level was 0.189, according to police documents. The legal limit in Texas is 0.08.   Continued...

Former Dallas Cowboys player Josh Brent enters the courtroom in Dallas, Texas January 14, 2014. REUTERS/Mike Stone