Former NFL player Sergio Brown pleads not guilty to murder charge in his mother’s death

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Former NFL player Sergio Brown pleaded not guilty Wednesday to first-degree murder and concealment of a dead body in the death of his mother in Illinois, according to the Cook County state’s attorney’s office.

Authorities accuse Brown of killing his 73-year-old mother, Myrtle Brown, and hiding her body near their shared home in the Chicago suburb of Maywood in September. Relatives reported the pair missing September 16, and her body was found wrapped in a sheet less than 50 yards from the home’s back door, according to police and court documents.

A status hearing in the case is slated for January 24 in Maywood.

Brown had flown to Mexico on September 15 and was taken into custody by Mexican authorities in early October, prosecutors said. He was deported to San Diego and arrested by US law enforcement October 10, and extradited to Maywood to face the charges, authorities said. An Illinois judge in late October ordered Brown be held without opportunity for bail, arguing he presented a “real and present threat” to the community.

The Cook County medical examiner’s office determined Brown’s mother died from injuries related to an assault, and the manner of death was ruled a homicide, office spokesperson Natalia Derevyanny said.

Myrtle Brown was killed by blunt force trauma and left outside her home, court documents that prosecutors submitted in October alleged. The documents were included in Brown’s bond proffer, a procedure in which a defendant offers prosecutors information about a crime, sometimes as part of a plea deal.

Myrtle Brown’s other son, who was not named in the court documents, last spoke to her around 3 p.m. on September 14 and began to worry after she stopped answering his text messages, according to the documents.

That son checked on the home early in the morning on September 16 and found the house empty, without any sign of forced entry, the documents said. Police searched the home later that day after relatives reported Myrtle and Brown missing when they had not been able to find or contact them, police said.

When neighbors began searching the surrounding area for Brown and his mother, a former neighbor found her body near the home, according to the proffer.

A search of the home revealed Ajax cleaner in the bathtub drain, which indicated it had recently been cleaned, the proffer said. Myrtle Brown’s iPad, credit cards and phone were missing, the documents said.

Surveillance cameras in the area also captured Brown burning items in a fire pit on the evening of September 14, and police later found burnt fabric in that same fire pit, the proffer says.

Sergio Brown played defensive back for the University of Notre Dame before signing with the New England Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2010. He played seven seasons in the NFL as a member of the Patriots, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars and Buffalo Bills.

CNN’s Bill Kirkos and Emma Tucker contributed to this report.

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