Lobo football player Devonta Tabannah was arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated on Sunday and was immediately suspended from the football team.
According to APD, the sophomore cornerback was driving a black Chevrolet and ran a red light to make a left turn onto Lomas Boulevard from Second Street. The maneuver forced APD officer Thomas Ivie to brake to avoid colliding with Tabannah’s vehicle.
Tabannah was arrested and charged with DWI, failure to obey a traffic control device and failure to provide proof of insurance, registration or a driver’s license.
According to the criminal complaint, Tabannah said the vehicle was not his and that he was unsure where to locate the registration or insurance. The officer asked the “unidentified female passenger” in the car if she knew where to locate the documents, which she did not.
Tabannah is a native of Oxon Hill, Md. He graduated from Potomac High School in 2010 and was recruited to play for the Lobos by former head coach Mike Locksley. Tabannah enrolled at UNM in January 2011, and kicked off his college football career in the 2011 season. Injuries sidelined the cornerback for the latter half of the season, and he was slated to return to the field this year before Davie suspended him.
Davie said Tabannah immediately came to him and was honest with him about the circumstances surrounding the arrest, but that honesty could not stay the suspension.
“I appreciated that he came to me, but that doesn’t resolve or doesn’t change the actions. There’s no margin for error with something like that,” he said. “He won’t be a member of this football team in the near future.”
Under former head coach Mike Locksley, football players were banned from participating in Downtown nightlife after a player was arrested at the Library Bar and Grill in 2009. Locksley was relieved of coaching duties in September 2011.
Davie said that since he’s been the team’s head coach, he hasn’t felt it necessary to ban players from certain parts of town.
“I don’t see any need to keep them from going to certain places now,” he said. “Maybe I will the more I come to understand what Albuquerque is all about, but I’ve never tried to shield guys or keep them from making decisions; it’s all about making the proper decisions.”