Stallworth says he flashed headlights

Updated: March 25, 2009, 9:46 AM ET
Associated Press

MIAMI -- Cleveland Browns wide receiver Donte Stallworth said he flashed his car's headlights to warn a pedestrian before fatally striking a man in Miami Beach last month, according to a report released by police.

The report released Tuesday also said the pedestrian, 59-year-old Mario Reyes, wasn't in a crosswalk when Stallworth's Bentley hit him.

According to the report, Stallworth told officers he flashed his lights to try to warn Reyes, a construction crane operator who was rushing to catch a bus after getting off work around 7:15 a.m. March 14.

Police said Stallworth was driving about 50 mph in a 40 mph zone. They are investigating whether alcohol played a role in the accident. No charges have been filed against Stallworth pending the outcome of blood tests.

A police diagram shows that Reyes was hit in the far left lane of the six-lane MacArthur Causeway -- not in a nearby crosswalk. Stallworth stopped a few feet away.

Police also released calls from three people who dialed 911 that morning.

The first, a woman, said, "There's a man laying in the middle of the road." The dispatcher asked for her location and a description of the victim.

Then the woman blurted: "He's dead. He's dead ... He was just laying in the middle of the road. I think he's dead."

When the dispatcher asked what happened, the woman said, "I don't know, I don't know, he's just lying in the middle of the road."

None of the callers apparently witnessed the accident. One man, saying he was on his way to work, said he "heard a hit" and then saw Reyes lying in the roadway. A few moments later, a police officer arrived.

Stallworth's attorney declined comment Tuesday but has said his client is cooperating with police. Stallworth last week released a statement saying he was "grief stricken" over the accident.

Stallworth signed a seven-year, $35 million contract with the Browns before last season but was injured most of the year. He was scheduled to receive a $4.75 million signing bonus the day before the accident. Before that, he played for New England, Philadelphia and New Orleans in the NFL and in college for Tennessee.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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