The Cleveland Brown’s Donte Stallworth is scheduled to get out of jail in four weeks, after serving 30 days for DUI manslaughter charge, stemming from an accident in Miami in March where he struck and killed a pedestrian.
After his release, he must face NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to see if he can even return to the league, after being suspended indefinitely by NFL on Thursday (June 18), two days after beginning his 30-day sentence.
According to the Associated press, Goodell called Stallworth’s actions caused “irreparable harm,” via a letter, resulting in his salary being cut while suspended.
Stallworth pleaded guilty earlier this month to a DUI manslaughter charge for striking 59-year-old Mario Reyes on March 14 while intoxicated. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail, and reached a financial settlement with the family of the Reyes.
Following his sentence, the 28-year-old Browns wide receiver must serve two years of house arrest and spend eight years on probation. The house arrest provisions would allow him to play.
The question is: When will the NFL let him play?
“The conduct reflected in your guilty plea resulted in the tragic loss of life and was inexcusable,” Goodell wrote. “While the criminal justice system has determined the legal consequences of this incident, it is my responsibility as NFL commissioner to determine appropriate league discipline for your actions, which have caused irreparable harm to the victim and his family, your club, your fellow players and the NFL.”
In the letter, excerpts of which were released by the NFL, Goodell said he will eventually contact Stallworth’s representatives before determining the length of the suspension.
Stallworth spent an evening in March drinking at a bar in Miami Beach’s Fountainebleau hotel, after which he hopped in his vehicle with a blood-alcohol level well above Florida’s legal limit, and struck Reyes, who was rushing to catch a bus after finishing work about 7:15 a.m.
He must must undergo drug and alcohol testing. His driver’s license was suspended for life and he must perform 1,000 hours of community service. After serving his time, Stallworth told Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Dennis Murphy that he hopes to get involved in drunken driving education programs.
“I accept full responsibility for this horrible tragedy,” Stallworth said. “I will bear this burden for the rest of my life.”
Stallworth signed a seven-year, $35 million contract with the Browns before last season, but was injured much of the year. It is unclear, as of press time, if they count on having him on their roster for next season.