FORT LAUDERDALE — Seattle Seahawks cornerback and former Florida Gator Quinton Dunbar and New York Giants cornerback DeAndre Baker turned themselves in to police on Saturday at the Broward County Jail, both charged with armed robbery at a cookout.
Dunbar and Baker had been sought by police since Thursday, when arrest warrants were issued after they were accused of robbing people of money and valuables at the party in Miramar.
Dunbar and Baker, both from Miami, are facing four counts of armed robbery, and Baker is facing an additional four counts of aggravated assault with a firearm.
Baker’s lawyer, Bradford Cohen, said he has affidavits that will prove Baker’s innocence. Dunbar’s lawyer, Michael Greico, also said he has such affidavits for his client.
Cohen posted on Instagram that “We believe our client is innocent of all charges. We urge people not to rush to judgment. We have affidavits from several witnesses that exonerate my client.”
Greico said Friday that “law enforcement and the State Attorney’s Office are both now aware that my client is innocent.”
Baker, 22, and Dunbar, 27, were attending a cookout at a Miramar home Wednesday night when a fight broke out, and Baker pulled out a handgun, the arrest warrant said. Baker, Dunbar and two other men began robbing other people at the party of thousands of dollars in cash, watches and other valuables, witnesses told investigators.
Cohen posted a statement on Instagram praising the Miramar Police Department’s cooperation:
“Reports are correct that Deandre turned himself in this morning. I am a believer in the system and that if everything works, the matter will be appropriately resolved. Both my client and I have felt @miramarpd and the Detective working the case were accommodating and went out of their way to assure Mr Bakers privacy during this hard time. That is not just lip service, it is fact, and we appreciate it.
“This is my 23rd year in practice defending those who I feel are wrongly charged or wrongly treated,” he continued. “That doesn’t mean that all police officers are bad or all are good. We all have jobs to do and I believe we all do them to the best of our ability. Police reports are just that, reports of what was told to them or said to them. Court is what we use to then examine those reports, investigate those claims and allow the Defendant an opportunity to confront the evidence. Don’t rush to judgement.”
Baker is currently being held without bond due to the severity of the charges. A judge could set a bail amount when Baker makes his first court appearance at 8 a.m. Sunday.
The affidavit says Baker was armed with a “semiautomatic firearm.” It also says one of Baker’s accomplices was wearing a red mask and alleges, according to testimony from multiple witnesses, that “Baker directed the assailant in the red mask to shoot (an unnamed person), who was just walking into the party.”
The alleged accomplice did not shoot.
Cohen claims his law firm’s “investigator” has had these affidavits from several witnesses “for some time,” although police were only called to the scene of the alleged incident at approximately 12:20 a.m. Thursday, per the affidavit submitted by Detective Mark Moretti.
“Police do not have any additional information at this time,” Miramar police public information officer Tania Rues told the New York Daily News.
Cohen said Miramar police “can only base warrants on what was told to them at the time,” so he is accepting that the police based the warrant for Baker’s arrest on the taped, sworn and separate testimonies of four alleged victims and one witness.
The severity of Baker’s charges and the four charges against Dunbar, in fact, carried the recommendation of “no bond,” or bail, listed in the affidavit.
As the Daily News reported Friday, it was possible Baker had not turned himself in immediately because his attorney was negotiating a bail amount with prosecutors.
And Cohen appeared to confirm that likelihood at the top of his statement, saying: “I want to thank @miramarpd for being professional in regards to surrendering and issues with the case.”
The warrant for Baker’s arrest also mentioned that a person known throughout the residence as “Coach,” identified as Dominick Johnson, said he “has known Deandre Lamar Baker and Quinton Disheen Dunbar since they were children” and that “he saw Baker armed with a handgun” at the party.
Moretti wrote that “Johnson was in contact with Baker” and that Moretti “attempted to talk with Baker via Johnson’s cellphone, but Baker refused to speak with (the detective) and immediately terminated the call.”
The Miami Herald reported Friday afternoon that Dunbar’s attorney, Grieco, said five witnesses had attested Dunbar was not involved. And Grieco also told the Herald he had presented these new affidavits to the Broward State Attorney’s Office.
Cohen has represented other high-profile clients in the past including rapper Kodak Black and former Giants receiver Plaxico Burress.