Giants CB Baker pleads not guilty to 8 chargesReuters | Updated: 20-05-2020 02:01 IST | Created: 20-05-2020 02:01 IST
New York Giants cornerback DeAndre Baker has pleaded not guilty to all eight charges against him stemming from last week's alleged armed robbery in Miramar, Fla. Bradford Cohen, Baker's attorney, filed the written pleas to Broward County Circuit Court on Monday afternoon, a day after Baker was released from jail on $200,000 bond. Baker requested a trial by jury, although NJ.com reports no court dates have been set.
Baker, 22, faces four charges of armed robbery and four charges of aggravated assault after witnesses told police that Baker and Seattle Seahawks cornerback Quinton Dunbar stole money and expensive watches while armed with a semiautomatic gun at a small gathering at a house in Miramar last week. Dunbar's attorney, Michael Grieco, told ESPN that his client plans to plead not guilty Tuesday afternoon to the four armed robbery charges he faces. Dunbar, 27, was also released Sunday morning, on $100,000 bond.
Both men turned themselves in on Saturday, after arrest warrants were issued Thursday. The attorneys for both men have said their clients are innocent, citing affadavits signed by the same witnesses who originally told police of the incident. According to ESPN, the alleged robbery happened during an "illegal dice gambling game" at a house in Miramar with 15-20 people present, and that a commotion ensued after parties were accused of using "loaded dice."
Baker and Dunbar allegedly brandished guns and robbed attendees of money and personal belongings, although there are discrepancies among witnesses as to whether Dunbar had a gun. According to a witness, a third person -- identified only as wearing a red mask -- also took part in the robbery, but prosecutors have yet to identify that person. The police report said Baker instructed that person to shoot someone, but no shots were fired. As a condition of his release, Baker was ordered to turn his gun -- which is licensed -- in to Miramar Police. However, one of his attorneys, Patrick Patel, told NJ.com Tuesday that his client will not do so after a Broward County judge approved a grant filed by Baker's attorneys. Baker instead must turn the gun into Patel and not possess any other firearms.
"We have concerns, because we don't believe any of the witnesses in this case," Patel told NJ.com. "If we just turn the gun in, they're just going to say, 'Well, that's the gun.' You know what I mean? If we don't (turn the gun in), they can say it's a black gun, then it turns out to be a blue gun. It further adds to my suspicion that this is a shakedown." Baker will be allowed to return to New Jersey as needed, according to Patel.
Baker was drafted by the Giants in the first round (30th overall) out of Georgia in 2019. He had 61 tackles, two tackles for loss and eight pass defenses in 16 games (15 starts) as a rookie. Dunbar was acquired by the Seahawks from the Washington Redskins in March in exchange for a 2020 fifth-round pick. He entered the NFL with Washington as an undrafted free agent in 2015 and has 150 tackles and nine interceptions in 58 career games (25 starts). Last season, he recorded a career-high four interceptions in 11 games.
--Field Level Media