Johnny Manziel’s Lawyer Withdraws From Case

     DALLAS (CN) – The Dallas attorney who accidentally texted the Associated Press about former Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel seeking a plea deal has quit his client’s domestic assault case, Manziel’s spokeswoman said Monday.
     Denise C. Michaels tweeted that lead attorney Jim Darnell of El Paso had informed her of Bob Hinton’s withdrawal from the case.
     “Hinton has only worked on the periphery of this case,” she said. “Lead counsel Jim Darnell has said from the beginning that he would not have Manziel plead guilty – his position has not changed.”
     Hinton reportedly sent the errant text last Wednesday after the Associated Press sought comment about a hit-and-run accident Manziel was involved in two days earlier.
     The AP said Hinton indicated he was sent a receipt of Manziel possibly spending over $1,000 on drug paraphernalia one day after the crash.
     “Heaven help us if one of the conditions is to pee in a bottle,” Hinton reportedly stated.
     The AP reported that Hinton responded to questions about the errant text by saying he meant to send it to Darnell and was not aware the AP received it.
     “He insisted the contents were protected by attorney-client privilege and threatened to sue if certain details were published,” the AP reported.
     Hinton said there was nothing identifying Manziel on the receipt and that he did not know if the receipt was legitimate or not. Michaels dismissed Manziel’s alleged purchase as a “rumor.”
     Manziel is awaiting trial on a misdemeanor assault charge involving ex-girlfriend Collen Crowley, 23, of Fort Worth. He faces up to one year in state prison and a $4,000 fine if convicted.
     Crowley was granted a protective order against Manziel in Tarrant County Court in February.
     She claims he threw her on a bed at Hotel ZaZa in Dallas in January, then forced her into a car while a valet allegedly ignored her pleas for help.
     “He hit me with his open hand on my left ear for jumping out of the car,” Crowley’s four-page affidavit said. “I realized immediately I could not hear out of that ear, and I still cannot today.”
     Crowley said she was worried Manziel was on drugs or having a “psychotic break” and claimed he said he was going to kill himself as he drove her back to her apartment in Fort Worth.
     “I stated crying even more and he told me ‘Shut up or I’ll kill us both,” the affidavit said. “Then I started begging him not to kill me and he immediately responded, ‘I would never kill you. You don’t deserve that. I would only kill myself!’ He was not making sense.”
     Within hours of being booked in May, Manziel tweeted a joke about not having a shirt on during his mugshot for an earlier arrest in college.

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