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TMCNet:  Miami DB Finnie arrested on grand theft charges

[December 12, 2012]

Miami DB Finnie arrested on grand theft charges

Dec 12, 2012 (Sun Sentinel - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Update Dec. 12, 5:15 p.m.: Miami cornerback Thomas Finnie bonded out of Miami-Dade jail on Thursday with a next court date set.

He'll be due back in front of judge WIlliam Thomas at 9 a.m. on Jan. 13, according to Miami-Dade Clerk of Courts records.

--- Original story CORAL GABLES -- A Miami football player was suspended Tuesday after his felony arrest for allegedly stealing a laptop computer.

Sophomore cornerback Thomas Finnie was charged with burglary and grand theft in connection with an on-campus incident reported Dec. 4. Finnie, 21, turned himself into university police Tuesday before being taken to Dade County Jail. Bond was set at $17,500 and Finnie remained in jail Tuesday evening.

Finnie broke into the Pearson Residential College dorm room at 12:20 p.m. and stole an Apple laptop, according to the Coral Gables police arrest report. The owner of the laptop, former UM football player Robert Wright, and a roommate were both present at the time of the theft.

Finnie was questioned two days after the incident and admitted to his involvement, but was not arrested until Tuesday. Finnie was not armed at the time of the burglary, according to the arrest report.

A Miami native and Central High School graduate, Finnie started the first six games at cornerback. Finishing the season with 30 tackles, Finnie closed his second season a career-high five stops at Duke. His only interception came in the win over North Carolina State.

This was his third arrest overall and second for grand theft. As a 16-year old, Finnie was placed in a pretrial diversion program for grand theft and larceny charges.

He was then charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana July 20, 2012, -- two weeks before preseason camp began. Finnie started the season-opening game at Boston College.

A second incident involving his most recent legal issue led to a campus-wide security alert Dec. 5. According to campus police, Wright was contacted by phone by someone asking for money in return for the laptop.

A meeting was set up for 9 p.m. Dec. 6 outside the BankUnited Center with UM police on site. Upon spotting the police, two suspects took off. Police arrested Del'Neco Streeter after a foot chase. Streeter, 21, was charged with receiving stolen property and resisting arrest.

The school issued an alert at 9:13 p.m. to warn the campus community of a police perimeter established for apprehending the suspects. The all-clear was issued by 9:49 p.m.

Rumors of an athlete's involvement circulated, but Finnie wasn't arrested until five days later. The team's year-end banquet was held Sunday, but Finnie did not attend.

The University of Miami released a brief statement on the matter Tuesday afternoon.

"Following the arrest for his involvement in the theft of a laptop computer, UM sophomore football student-athlete Thomas Finnie has been immediately suspended from all University of Miami athletic activities," the statement read.

Burglaries were down at UM dorms last year where 4,100 students live. A total of 22 were reported, according to the annual safety report, after recording 30 in 2010 and 25 in 2009. At nearby Florida International University, dorm thefts dropped from 62 in 2009 to 20 in 2011. FIU has 3,000 dorm beds on its Miami campus.

Finnie came to UM as a three-star prospect after helping Central to the 2010 Class 6A title. He enrolled a semester early in the spring of 2011 to get a head start on the competition. At the time, he told the Sun Sentinel college life was pretty regimented.

"Really, it's just books and ball," Finnie said. "That's it." mcasagrande@tribune.com or @ByCasagrande on Twitter ___ (c)2012 the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) Visit the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) at www.sun-sentinel.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

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