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Dexter Manley Arrested Again


March 1995

On Feb. 14 former Washington Redskin Dexter Manley was arrested and charged with possession of a controlled substance (David Aldridge, "At Rock Bottom, Manley Searches for a Way Back Up," Washington Post, March 5, 1995, p. D1).

From Houston, Manley had phoned a friend who is a producer at the Fox affiliate WTTG Channel 5 in Washington, asking for help contacting DC Mayor Marion Barry. Manley reportedly wanted Barry's assistance in finding a drug treatment program. When the former football player suddenly hung up, his friend became concerned and called Houston police. Police responded and reportedly found four rocks of crack cocaine on a bed in his motel room.

The Post article quotes family members and friends who say that Manley is addicted to crack and is at times suicidal and paranoid. According to his son, Manley said he hears voices and believes that there is a conspiracy against him. He has been diagnosed as suffering from manic-depressive and attention deficit disorders.

On Mar. 3, he was released on personal recognizance and was ordered to be evaluated for mental competency at the Sam Houston Spring Branch Hospital, a psychiatric hospital in Springfield, Texas.

"He's okay, but he's not in the best of moods right now," said his sister Cynthia. "When I talk to him, he has mood swings. He seems to be depressed at times."

If convicted, he would face two to ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine but will probably receive probation because it would be his first conviction.

This is Manley's third drug-related arrest in four months, but he was not charged in two previous incidents. On Nov. 13, 1994, he was arrested in a raid on a reputed crack house. On Jan. 24, 1995, he was arrested for not paying phone bills at a motel and officers found a crack pipe in the back of the police car after transporting Manley to the station.

Manley's lawyers are arranging for a 90-day involuntary commitment program to treat his drug addiction and psychiatric problems. He has attended treatment in the past but has always left before his treatment was scheduled to end. This time he will be unable to check himself out.

"I've been to nine rehabs already," Manley told the Post in an exclusive interview. "I know the language. This is the bottom I need to see, jailhouse recovery. I need to see people coming in and out of here. If I don't change my ways, I'm going to be dead, or they're going to give me some jail time somewhere across this country. That's not the legacy for Dexter and Derrick and Dalis [his children] ... a guy who couldn't pull himself out of the gutter."

Manley was a defensive end with the Redskins for two Super Bowl victories in 1983 and 1988. On Dec. 21, 1991 he retired from the National Football League after he was banned for life for failing four drug tests. He played in the Canadian football league for a season in 1993.