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Houston Rockets basketball player Dwight Howard is under criminal investigation for alleged child abuse in Georgia.

Center Dwight Howard is now undergoing an active criminal investigation for beating his 6-year-old son, Braylon, with a belt back in August. Howard was initially cleared of the allegations but things turned sour on Monday when the Cobb County Georgia Police asked Florida for a file containing doctor’s findings that he committed child abuse.

Georgia law enforcement source tells TMZ … “People who were not so forthcoming before today [Monday] have been.” The source adds detectives did several one-on-one interviews Monday and say the case “has now been raised to top of the list.”

It was determined by Dr. Kessler that Braylon was hit with a belt buckle and struck with excessive force by Howard. According to the doctor, the injuries lasted more than 24 hours and were consistent with medical diagnosis of physical abuse.

The mother of Braylon, Royce Reed, went to child services in Orlando, Fla. in August and complained of Howard whooping their son with a belt, leaving bruises and abrasions on his leg.

Reed was sent to a nearby facility by a case-worker to evaluate the boy and document the injuries. Howard admitted to hitting the child, but didn’t see anything wrong in hitting him, citing his own upbringing as an excuse.

Doctors recommend that Howard participate in parenting classes and use methods other than whooping to discipline his child while the case is under investigated.

SOURCE: TMZ | PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY