Cleveland Browns unlikely to retain Malik McDowell following nude arrest in Florida

McDowell's contract expires on March 16 and the Browns are unlikely to retain him after his latest arrest, according to USA Today.

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Cleveland Browns’ defensive tackle Malik McDowell may be out of a job very soon, according to USA Today.

The troubled 25-year-old was hit with felony charges in Deerfield Beach, Florida on Monday after walking naked into a local children’s learning center parking lot and attacking a Broward County Sheriff deputy who responded to the scene, according to court records reviewed by theGrio.

Malik McDowell thegrio.com
Cleveland Browns defensive tackle Malik McDowell is pictured in this Broward County Jail mugshot photo. (Credit: Broward County Sheriff’s Office)

Staffers at The Learning Experience childcare and children’s learning center in Deerfield Beach called police around 1:25 p.m. after spotting a naked man later identified as McDowell walking outside their building, which was subsequently put on lockdown.

McDowell has a history of violent public behavior leading to arrests. His one-year contract with the Browns is scheduled to expire on March 16, according to USA Today.

An unnamed person familiar with the situation told the newspaper on Tuesday that it’s highly unlikely the Browns will keep McDowell on the roster as an exclusive rights free agent past March after his latest run-in with law enforcement.

Team officials released a statement confirming they’re aware of the “very concerning incident and arrest involving Malik McDowell,” and “are in the process of gathering more information,” according to TMZ Sports.

“We understand the severity of this matter and our thoughts are for the well-being of all involved. … No further comment at this time,” the team said on Tuesday.

Cell phone video captured the Monday afternoon moment when the 6-foot-6, 290 pound McDowell charged and rammed a responding deputy in the children’s learning center parking lot before punching the officer multiple times.

“The punches were swung with extreme aggression with at least one strike hitting me on my right eye/temple area of my eye,” the deputy wrote in an incident report obtained by theGrio. “I sustained permanent injury to my eye/eye socket area and injury to my left heel/achilles [tendon] area.”

The deputy and other officers who arrived later chased McDowell on foot before tasing and handcuffing the completely nude man, court records show. He was charged with aggravated battery of an officer, resisting arrest, and exposing his sexual organs in public before appearing in court on Tuesday and being released on bond.

There was no mention of McDowell being under the influence of drugs or alcohol or having a mental health episode in his booking report. The Michigan native and former second-round pick has had other run-ins with law enforcement in recent years.

His blood alcohol level was reportedly two times over the legal limit on a snowy day in February 2019 when he allegedly fought a police officer after a traffic stop in Lathrup Village, Michigan, according to TMZ Sports.

The officer pulled over McDowell’s vehicle for speeding after watching it spin out on a snow-covered road, according to the entertainment news site. McDowell demanded to speak with the officer’s supervisor that day before retreating into an adjacent Marathon gas station.

Surveillance video obtained by TMZ Sports captured footage of McDowell scuffling with the officer and knocking over shelves of food inside the business. A local judge ordered McDowell to wear an alcohol-monitoring bracelet after he allegedly failed to complete a routine alcohol test following the incident.

A woman at the learning center who identified herself as an employee named Kiera on Wednesday said the center’s staff and its young students are all doing fine following McDowell’s alleged nude display.

“We’re good,” she told theGrio over the phone Wednesday morning.

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