CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Browns cut a player from their roster on Wednesday, a day after he was charged with attempted murder in Passaic, N.J.
Ausar Walcott, 23, whom the Browns signed as a free agent last month, allegedly punched a man in the head outside a Passaic nightclub early Sunday, police said. The victim was taken by friends to a hospital in New York City, where he was listed in critical condition with a serious head injury, police said.
Walcott’s first hearing is scheduled for this morning before state Superior Court Judge Marilyn C. Clark in Paterson.
In a brief statement posted on the Browns’ website on Wednesday afternoon, the team said that Walcott, a linebacker who was signed on May 18 following a tryout, had been cut from the roster. Walcott was considered one of the top defensive safeties in the nation as a high school senior and played linebacker and defensive end for the University of Virginia Cavaliers from 2009 through 2012.
The Browns had given him a three-year contract worth almost $1.5 million, but the money was not guaranteed, and he did not receive a signing bonus, according to a report from Yahoo! Sports.
Walcott was charged with first-degree attempted murder, second-degree aggravated assault and third-degree endangering the welfare of an injured victim after he turned himself in to police on Tuesday morning. He was being held Wednesday in the Passaic County Jail in Paterson in lieu of $500,000 cash bail, authorities said.
Walcott punched New York City resident Derrick Jones during an altercation outside The Palace Gentlemen’s Club on Main Avenue around 3 a.m. Sunday, said Detective Andrew White of the Passaic police. He did not provide details about the fight.
White said Jones’ friends took him to the Harlem Hospital Center in Manhattan. A spokeswoman for the hospital said Wednesday that the victim’s family “does not want to speak with the media.”
Walcott’s attorney could not be reached Wednesday afternoon and did not respond to a message left at his office. A senior assistant prosecutor with the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office, Salvatore Bellomo, said he did not have additional information to provide about the fight.
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