A witness to the immediate aftermath of the one-car crash that claimed the life of Dallas Cowboys practice-squad player Jerry Brown has come forward with a startling account of the incident. Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent, who has been charged with intoxication manslaughter for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol, had to be coerced into helping Brown from the burning wreckage, according to Stacee McWilliams, who spoke with The Dallas Morning News and WFAA-TV News 8 in Dallas.
Brent was speeding in a Dallas suburb when he flipped his car in the early hours of Saturday morning, according to police. Irving police spokesman John Argumaniz said Brown was found unresponsive at the scene. He was later pronounced dead at a hospital.
McWilliams explained to local media outlets what she saw when arriving at the site of the crash before police. She said she encountered Brent near the wreckage. As a fire in the car began to intensify, she realized that Brown was still in the car. As described by McWilliams, she had to plead with Brent to help Brown out of the car.
"I said 'Get him out of the car,'" McWilliams told News 8. "'You can't just stand here and watch this man die. Pull him out of the car!' And he said to me, 'He won't get out.' I said, 'Get him out of the' -- you know, commanded him -- 'get him out of the car!'"
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Although McWilliams acknowledged that Brent eventually did pull Brown from the burning wreck, as had been previously reported, she felt that earlier accounts of the incident overstated his willingness to assist.
“I want people to understand that Josh Brent is not a hero,” McWilliams told The Dallas Morning News. “I keep hearing reports of how he was there to pull his friend from the fire but he had to be coerced and pushed and begged and pleaded to get his friend out of the fire and when he pulled him out, he just left him in the street. He didn’t tell him ‘hang in there, help is on the way.’ Nothing. He just left him there and I want the magnitude of that to be understood.”
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According to a police affidavit obtained by USA Today, Brent was observed pulling Green from the burning vehicle. However, Brent's attorney reportedly said that the other details shared with him by police do not match up with McWilliams' account.
“That is absolutely false,” Brent's attorney, George Milner told the Dallas Morning News after hearing McWilliams' version of events. “What I’ve been told is that Jerry Brown was never conscious after the accident.”
Despite McWilliams' chilling account of Brent's reluctance to help Brown from the car, he described Brown as being his "very best friend." The two football players attended the University of Illinois and played on the football team together.
"Jerry Brown was my very best friend, and I'm just trying to deal with his death right now," Brent said, via The Sporing News, after being released on on $500,000 bond on Sunday.
Police reached out to McWilliams after she shared her account with the media, according to News 8.