Strongsville police officer Eric Schubert wrote in an incident report he stopped Callaway at 2:59 a.m. Sunday near for failing to yield to oncoming traffic. Schubert cited Callaway with possession of marijuana, after finding a small amount under the driver’s seat, and driving with a suspended license.
In dash cam video, Callaway said his car had just been shipped from Florida to Ohio and he didn’t know marijuana was in it. One of the officers involved can be heard on video saying Callaway “claimed his little brother who smokes dope was using the car.”
Dorsey and Jackson met with Callaway on Tuesday night and bought his version of the events. Dorsey said specifically he believes Callaway was not smoking marijuana.
“Hue and myself had a long conversation with Antonio that evening and we basically presented to him the organization’s low threshold with regards to this type of situation,” Dorsey said.
“We expressed extreme disappointment and dissatisfaction with the event that occurred that Sunday. We thought it was important to have those discussions moving forward. He was remorseful in this thing.”
Callaway failed to inform the Browns about the incident. The team learned about it Tuesday through the media. Dorsey said he and Jackson “hammered home” the point that Callaway should have notified them.
“I don’t think he grasped the full communication component of it in terms of establishing the trust factor,” Dorsey said. “… That could be a rookie mistake. He’s a young 21-year-old. He doesn’t know the nuances of professional football, but he’s going to have to learn this responsibility very quickly now in light of this situation and in light of his past.”
Without knowledge of the incident, Dorsey traded receiver Corey Coleman, the 15th overall draft pick in 2016, to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday night for a seventh-round selection in 2020. But Dorsey said his decision to deal Coleman would “not necessarily” have been different had he known about Callaway’s run-in with the law.
Dorsey also said shipping Coleman away for basically nothing wasn’t a result of the coaching staff saying they were fed up with him and wanted him gone.
“No, that wasn’t the case at all,” Dorsey said. “It was a collaborative effort of all the organization.
“We’ve had a long enough time to evaluate his skill sets, and in combination with the coaching staff and personnel staff, we think a fresh start would probably be best.”
The Browns effectively promoted Callaway to the starting lineup Sunday by trading Coleman. Callaway had a disappointing start against the Giants Thursday night, but finished strong. He dropped a pass and had two others deflect off his hands, including a two-point try from Baker Mayfield. But later Mayfield hit Callaway with a 54-yard slant and run for a touchdown. He had three catches for 87 yards, including a diving 24-yarder that the Browns successfully challenged after it was ruled incomplete on the field.
Callaway entered the league in its substance-abuse program because he submitted a diluted drug test sample this past winter at the NFL Scouting Combine. He is subject to discipline under the NFL and NFL Players Association’s substance-abuse policy.
Players in stage one of the program who violate the policy will be subject to a fine equaling three-seventeenths of their base salary and entrance into stage two of the program upon notification by the medical director, per the policy. So Callaway could be fined $84,705 of his $480,000 base salary for 2018.
Schubert said on video he “got real nervous” when he found a gun part and ammunition in Callaway’s car. However, no gun was discovered in the search. Callaway said on video he owns a gun but it’s in Florida.
Callaway told Schubert on video he had been driving home from a teammate’s house.
“The explanation was a valid one, but he shouldn’t have been out at 3,” Dorsey said. “Your mother told you nothing ever good happens after midnight.”
Callaway is scheduled to appear in Strongsville Mayor’s Court at 8 a.m. Aug. 23.
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