Tom Murphy is a reporter for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A graduate of Louisiana Tech University, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America, and voter for the Heisman Trophy and AP Top 25 football poll.
UA signee cleared of felony charges
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas receiver signee JoJo Robinson will face no charges stemming from an alleged armed robbery last month in Miami, family attorney Larry Handfield said Thursday.
Robinson, 18, had been charged with one count of armed robbery in the incident, in which police said a pedestrian was robbed of a gold bracelet at gun point. Robinson was a passenger in the backseat of the car, driven by Lakeith Stafford.
"All charges were dismissed against him, and I'm very pleased that after a thorough investigation he was cleared of all wrongdoing," Handfield said.
Denise Georges, division chief of the Florida state attorney's office, prepared a "no-action" memo on Robinson's charge on May 13. Keytoy Lee was identified by police as the alleged gunman in the incident, which involved the robbery of a minor.
The memo read, in part, "Stafford and Lee have clear roles respectively as getaway driver and gunman, however Robinson's role is insufficient to prove anything more than mere presence."
In the memo's summation, Georges wrote, "In conclusion, while there is evidence that Robinson became aware of the crime as it was being committed, there is no evidence that he had any prior knowledge of a criminal plan or had a conscious intent that the robbery be committed."
Robinson's original arraignment date was Wednesday, but the Miami-Dade prosecutor's office moved it up to late last week, revealing its decision not to pursue the charge last Thursday.
"Like I said in the beginning, I didn't think he had any involvement," said Joseph Robinson, the player's father.
"It was a lesson learned. He's ready to go up there and be a Razorback.
"We're ready to make some good things happen up in Arkansas."
Arkansas Coach Bret Bielema declined to comment on the resolution of Robinson's case through a UA athletic department official.
JoJo and Joseph Robinson flew to Fayetteville for the Razorbacks' Red-White game late last month and Bielema briefly discussed their presence following the scrimmage.
"One of the things we always constantly pride ourselves on is doing everything right, on and off the field," Bielema said on April 26. "I would say this: If there was any concern on my behalf, if there was any validity to it, he wouldn’t be here. He’s a great kid."
Robinson is considered a potential instant impact signee for a receiving corps desperate for big-play talent. Originally a Florida State commitment, Robinson switched to Arkansas and signed with the Razorbacks in February.
The 6-foot, 185-pounder is a four-star prospect who caught 70 passes for 760 yards and 4 touchdowns last season at Miami Northwestern High School.