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Police: Dwight Howard investigated for child abuse

Alexis Stevens
Atlanta Journal-Constituation

Atlanta — NBA star Dwight Howard is under investigation for suspected child abuse, Cobb County, Ga., police said Tuesday — the same day his son turned 7.

It's the second time Howard, 28, has been investigated by Cobb police for the same allegations, but he has not been charged. Howard also was under investigation in Florida, but also was not charged, attorney David Oscar Markus said in an emailed statement to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

"The Florida Department of Children and Families thoroughly examined all of the evidence and determined that the claims of child abuse were not substantiated," Markus said. "The case was closed in September.

The boy's mother, Royce Reed, a former star of the VH1 reality show "Basketball Wives," has publicly discussed the allegations on social media in recent days, including an angry message on Instagram stating the investigation continues in Florida.

"Let's get the facts straight!" Reed wrote Sunday. "THE CASE IS NOT CLOSED AND HE IS/WAS NOT CLEARED!"

Howard is reportedly seeking full custody of his son. Reed's allegations are an attempt to get money from Howard, his attorney said.

"Even though the allegations have already been found to have no merit, when a complaint about the welfare of a child is made to law enforcement, an investigation is commenced," Markus said. "We are confident the Georgia authorities will reach the same conclusion as the Florida authorities. The truth is on our side."

Howard attended Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy before entering the 2004 NBA draft. He played eight seasons with the Orlando Magic before being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers in 2012. In July 2013, Howard signed to play with the Houston Rockets.