LaceDarius Dunn suspended indefinitely
WACO, Texas -- Baylor indefinitely suspended leading scorer LaceDarius Dunn on Tuesday after he surrendered to police to face an aggravated assault charge, in which he is accused of breaking his girlfriend's jaw during an argument last week.
According to Waco police, officers were called to Hillcrest Hospital on Sept. 27 to investigate an assault on LaCharlesla Edwards, 21, who had a broken jaw. Police said Edwards and Dunn, identified as her boyfriend, had gotten into an argument and that Dunn punched her in the face. She went to the hospital to seek treatment.
Bears coach Scott Drew said Dunn, a senior guard, "has been indefinitely suspended from all team activities." Drew confirmed that Dunn was in class on Tuesday morning and that he has not been suspended from the university.
Baylor said in a release that the university was working to gather facts and was fully cooperating with authorities. The school said there would be no further comment.
Dunn's attorney, Vikram Deivanayagam, confirmed that the Baylor guard was booked earlier Tuesday at the McLennan County Jail in Waco. An operator at the jail said that Dunn remained there on Tuesday afternoon, awaiting booking.
"We look forward to reviewing the file and working with the district attorney's office," the attorney said in a statement.
Edwards' lawyer, Jason Darling, said the victim and her family were "extremely disappointed" at the felony charge against Dunn. Darling said his client did not want to pursue charges and plans to file an affidavit of non-prosecution in an attempt to get the charges dismissed.
Darling acknowledged that Dunn did indeed punch his client in the face one time after "she got up in his face arguing."
In a statement released through Darling on Wednesday, Edwards said: "My family and I are deeply disturbed about the misinformation and half truths that are being reported by media regarding the incident with my boyfriend. He has never struck me during our long-term relationship. What happened on the night of September 27 was an accident and I went to the hospital for precautionary reasons.
"I never expressed any interest in pressing charges nor will I in the future press charges on this incident. I am fine and my jaw is not broken as is being reported. My family and I wish to put this situation behind us. Lace and I will continue our relationship and raising our son in a good environment. I respectfully request that the District Attorney's Office dismiss these charges, and further request that Baylor University lift their suspension."
Darling said he believed the case merited nothing more than a misdemeanor charge against Dunn based on the injuries his client sustained. He said she suffered "two minor fractures in her jaw" that were treated with "minor day surgery." He said there was minor swelling and that her jaw was not wired shut, and reports of loose or missing teeth were inaccurate.
Darling said his client has returned to her home in Louisiana. He said she was only visiting Dunn and is not living in Waco. The couple have been dating nearly a decade and have a 3-year-old son together, he said.
The woman's father, Charles Edwards, told The Associated Press from his home in Monroe, La., that his daughter didn't have a broken jaw and that "somebody down there is trying to make a story out of nothing."
The elder Edwards said his daughter was "laughing and giggling" when he went to Waco after the alleged attack.
"If something would have happened to my daughter, I would probably be in jail right now in Waco because I probably would have done something to that young man," said Charles Edwards, who said his daughter is in Monroe. "In this case, she said they were playing, and that's it."
Dunn was a second-team All-Big 12 pick while averaging 19.6 points and 4.8 rebounds last season when Baylor set a school record with 28 victories and got within one win of making its first NCAA Final Four appearance in 60 years. He set school records for points (704), 3-pointers (116) and free throw shooting percentage (85.7 on 126 of 147 free throws).
In April, two days after 6-foot-10 power forward Ekpe Udoh said he was bypassing his senior season at Baylor for the NBA draft, Dunn said he was staying. Udoh was the sixth overall pick by Golden State.
In 106 games over three seasons for Baylor, Dunn has averaged 16.4 points and already has the school record with 299 career 3-pointers, 91 shy of the Big 12 record. He is fourth in school history with 1,739 career points. He needs 451 points to surpass Terry Teagle as Baylor's career scoring leader, and 518 to pass Texas Tech's Andre Emmett for the Big 12 record.
Information from ESPN.com's Pat Forde, Andy Katz, Dana O'Neil and The Associated Press was used in this report.
MORE MEN'S COLLEGE BASKETBALL HEADLINES
- Grant, Notre Dame outduel Okafor, Duke
- OU blows out Texas Tech in record fashion
- Purdue uses stifling defense to stun Hoosiers
- Ga. Tech routs No. 23 Miami to stop skid