Suspended Razorback Players Plead Not Guilty to Felony Charges
Three former Razorback football players pleaded not guilty to felony burglary and theft charges during an arraignment Wednesday.
Wide receivers Marquel Wade and Maudrecus Humphrey and tight end Andrew Peterson appeared at the Washington County Detention Center Wednesday morning with their attorneys.
They appeared before Magistrate Ray Reynolds and were given an Aug. 27 trial date.
The trial is set to be held in Washington County Circuit Court, Division I, before Judge William Storey, officials said.
Each is charged with three counts of residential burglary, a Class B felony punishable by five to 20 years in the Arkansas Department of Correction and a fine of up to $15,000, officials said. Each also is charged with one count of theft of property, a Class D felony punishable by up to six years in the Department of Correction.
University of Arkansas head football coach John L. Smith issued a statement Wednesday saying the players are off the team, but added their status on the team will be reviewed when the legal process is complete.
“Marquel Wade, Maudrecus Humphrey and Andrew Peterson are not members of our football team,” Smith said, “and once the legal system has ruled on their status we will determine their status with the team.”
The three were arrested in May on burglary charges, regarding several campus dorm room thefts.
The day after being arrested, Wade was released from jail on a $2,500 bond, and Humphrey and Peterson were released on a $3,500 bond. They remain out on bond and left the detention center immediately after their arraignment.
University of Arkansas police arrested the three May 12 on suspicion of residential burglary, according to the arrest report.
Officers responded to a burglary complaint on May 1 regarding a laptop that had been stolen from a dorm room on campus, the report states. Over the next week, there were 10 additional complaints of stolen property, including textbooks, laptops, cash and DVDs.
Surveillance video showed three suspects walking through the hallways, checking doors and entering rooms. The suspects later were identified as Wade, Humphrey and Peterson, the report states.
On May 9, a clerk at the campus bookstore on Dickson Street also identified the three as having been in the bookstore multiple times selling textbooks. Textbooks and other stolen property were recovered from Peterson’s dorm, according to the report.
Humphrey and Peterson were arrested on nine counts of burglary and Wade on one count.
In a prepared statement last month, Smith said the players had been “suspended indefinitely.”
“We have high stands for our student-athletes, and I expect them to conduct themselves appropriately,” Smith said. “Poor conduct and misbehavior will not be tolerated and is not what we expect from the University of Arkansas football program.”
The Hogs open their season Sept. 1 when Jacksonville State visits Fayetteville. The following Saturday Arkansas plays Louisiana-Monroe in Little Rock before returning to Fayetteville Sept. 15 to face national powerhouse and SEC West rival Alabama.
Wade’s attorney, Chad Atwell, said the player has been working out in anticipation of playing again.