Dun Deal Wrongfully Jailed for 10 Days After Accepting a Facebook Friend Request
Back in October, it was reported that producer Dun Deal had reached a $300,000 settlement with the City of Augusta/Richmond County, Georgia, after he was arrested by FBI agents in 2014 on false grounds. Speaking with CBS 46 in Atlanta, Dun Deal says the whole misunderstanding started with a Facebook friend request. He was held in jail for 10 days with no opportunity for bond after authorities connected him to an $80,000 Costco jewelry heist through Facebook, despite the fact that the producer has never been to Augusta.
Dun Deal accepted a friend request from a woman by the name of Ronnica Westmoreland who rented the getaway car used in the robbery. "I have fans, you know, people follow me. And I add people back. I have no issue with following people back," the producer said of connecting with the woman who was otherwise a total stranger.
When police spoke with Westmoreland, she said she had loaned the car to "a guy named David," amd Dun Deal's real name happens to be David Cunningham. "They found a black man who wears a lot of jewelry. So they jumped to the conclusion, that must be him," James Radford, Cunningham's attorney, said.
Making matters worse, police said that Cunningham looked like one of the men in the security video and they had his fingerprints, despite the fact that he had never before been arrested and thus his fingerprints wouldn't have been on file. The FBI, assuming the arrest warrant was obtained through actual evidence, arrested the producer and raided his Atlanta studio. "They threw tear gas over the gate, put guns in people's faces," he said.
The officers who fabricated the evidence were disciplined, and one was forced to resign. The four men who committed the crime were later apprehended, all pleading guilty. Westmoreland meanwhile was charged with making false statements.
"If he was someone else, someone without family, without means, without a father who understood the process, that 10 days could have turned to 50," defense attorney Caleb Gross said. "It could have turned to 100. That's how people get sucked into the system."
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