NFL running back Caleb King was dumped by the Minnesota Vikings on Tuesday and facing the prospect of assault charges for allegedly attacking a man who said he looked like Eddie Murphy.
King is accused of dragging 22-year-old Andrew Hayek from a car and beating him so savagely he fractured his skull, the Pioneer Press reported.
King, however, denies assaulting Hayek and says he injured himself falling over.
The 24-year-old running back was released from jail Tuesday but investigators are continuing to probe the alleged assault that took place early Saturday in Minnesota.
They told the newspaper King could still face felony charges.
"In any case where a person is arrested, the clock starts ticking," assistant Anoka County attorney Paul Young said. "We are still trying to make sure we have all the facts and understand them well to make a good charging decision."
Police said King confronted Hayek at a birthday party of a female friend after he took offense to Hayek’s comments likening him to the comedy icon.
Witnesses told police King dragged Hayek out of his car and struck him multiple times after Hayek attempted to lock himself inside.
King, who was later arrested without incident, denied assaulting the victim, telling police, Hayek "simply fell to the ground" when he was talking to him, the Press reported.
Hayek was admitted to the hospital with a skull fracture, facial fractures and injuries that required 50 stitches, officials said.
King, who went unselected in the NFL supplemental draft in 2011, spent most of last season on the Vikings’ practice squad. He was promoted to the 53-man roster in December.