Former Dallas Cowboys player Josh Brent avoided prison Friday and instead was sentenced to 180 days in jail and 10 years of probation for a drunken car crash that killed his friend and teammate, Jerry Brown.
Brent was convicted Wednesday of intoxication manslaughter for the December 2012 crash on a suburban Dallas highway that killed Brown, who was a passenger in Brent’s car. Brent could have been sentenced to up to 20 years in prison. He was also fined $10,000.
Super Bowl XLVIII
O Denver vs. Seattle
At East Rutherford, N.J.
Feb. 2, 4:30 p.m.
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Brent, 25, closed his eyes when the judge read the jury’s verdict. He was kept in custody after the hearing.
One of his attorneys, Kevin Brooks, described the former defensive tackle as "somber."
"I’m really kind of overwhelmed with the results," Brooks said. "It’s kind of what we’ve been fighting for from Day 1. I’m happy for Josh. Josh is still sad and grieving and that’s something he’s going to carry with him the rest of his life."
Brent’s family members and supporters cried and hugged as the courtroom emptied after the hearing. His mother, LaTasha Brent, spoke briefly as she left the courthouse, saying she was there to support her son.
Brown’s mother, Stacey Jackson, wasn’t in the courtroom when the verdict was read. She publicly forgave Brent, and said during Thursday’s sentencing proceedings: "He’s still responsible, but you can’t go on in life holding a grudge. We all make mistakes."
Jackson was the last witness the jury heard, and lead prosecutor Heath Harris said her testimony probably helped Brent get probation. Prosecutors were pushing for prison time for Brent.
Blood tests pegged Brent’s blood alcohol content at 0.18 percent, which is more than twice the state’s legal limit to drive of 0.08 percent. Prosecutors told jurors that the burly, 320-pound lineman had as many as 17 drinks on the night of the crash.
Judge Robert Burns scolded Brent after reading the verdict, saying his actions "bring shame to the city of Dallas."
Seattle’s Sherman fined
Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman was fined $7,875 for unsportsmanlike conduct/taunting in the final minute of the NFC championship game against San Francisco.
Sherman’s fine was confirmed by the league Friday.
Shrman was flagged after he made a choking gesture toward the San Francisco bench that he said was directed at quarterback Colin Kaep-ernick. Sherman had just deflected a pass intended for Michael Crabtree in the end zone that was intercepted by linebacker Malcolm Smith and clinched Seattle’s 23-17 victory.
Sherman ran over and after tapping Crabtree on the backside and extended his hand for a handshake. Crabtree then shoved Sherman in the face. The All-Pro cornerback then made the choking gesture. Sherman was the only player fined in the game.
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