Browns receiver Davone Bess’ recent questionable pattern of behavior turned alarming early Friday morning.
Bess was arrested for assaulting an officer, disorderly conduct and resisting an officer at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport in South Florida.
Bess was taken into custody at 6:19 a.m., and the arresting officer indicated Bess was acting “irrationally” and appeared to be under the influence of an unknown narcotic, according to the report filed with the Broward County Sheriff’s Office.
He was released four hours later after posting a bond of $100.
The officer, working a TSA security detail, approached Bess after several passengers reported a man acting irrationally, dancing and singing in the concourse with his pants repeatedly falling down, according to the report. After the officer approached, Bess squeezed a cup of hot coffee that wasn’t his and the liquid spilled on the officer’s Broward Sheriff’s Office uniform.
Bess, 28, took a fighting stance and the officer struck him in the leg with his baton, but with no effect. Bess took off his shirt, took a fighting stance and refused the officer’s orders to get on the ground.
When backup arrived for the officer, Bess complied and was taken into custody.
The officer qualified the behavior as “irrational” and contributed it to an unknown narcotic.
“He appeared to be looking through me when I was talking to him,” the officer wrote in the report.
Bess recently completed his first season with the Browns. He missed the final two games for personal reasons.
“The team is aware of the situation and currently working to gather more information,” a Browns spokesman said.
The Browns may choose to cut Bess and try to recoup some of his salary. Cleveland signed Bess to a four-year, $14.2 million contract through 2016 that includes $5.75 million guaranteed. His salary for 2014 is $3.067 million.
NFL rules prohibit non-playoff teams from releasing players until after the Super Bowl on Feb. 2.
Bess left jail carrying a tote bag with reggae legend Bob Marley’s face on it. Bess has posted dozens of pictures on social media in the last couple of weeks, many featuring the Rasta lifestyle.
“Rastafari,” was his comment to television crews that followed him to his car Friday after his release. He added “One Love,” when asked if he had a message to the fans. It’s a popular song by Marley.
Bess also made headlines Thursday morning when a picture posted on his Twitter account showed what looks like a cigar on a table near a tiny bag of what appears to be marijuana. Some of the same green-brown substance is loose on the table.
The bag sits on a cell phone with a “Jah” screensaver. Jah means God in Rastafarian culture. The caption read: “We da real dons!”
The photo also contains a picture of “The Godmother,” Griselda Blanco, a cocaine kingpin in the 1970s and ’80s. She was assassinated in 2012.
A Browns spokesman said the team was looking further into the situation and will deal with the matter internally. An NFL spokesman said the league had no comment.
The picture was deleted from Twitter later in the morning.
It wasn’t the first time Bess was linked with a possibly incriminating picture.
On Dec. 20, a photo was posted on his Instagram account that showed him lighting a type of cigarette on a porch with a Rasta flag draped around his shoulders and a poster of Marley nearby. The post came on a Friday afternoon when Bess was absent from practice for personal reasons.
Bess was placed on the reserve/non-football illness list the next day, and a league source said he was dealing with family issues. He missed the final two games.
His first season in Cleveland was a bust even before that.
A possession receiver playing primarily out of the slot, Bess led the league with 14 drops through 14 games. He finished with 42 catches for 362 yards, an 8.6 average, and two touchdowns. The catches, yards and average were lows in his six-year career.
The Browns traded fourth- and fifth-round picks to Miami in exchange for Bess and fourth- and seventh-round picks during the draft in April. Cleveland then signed Bess to the extension.