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Dotson decides to speak to FBI

CAMBRIDGE — CAMBRIDGE - Former Eastern Shore basketball star Carlton Dotson, who has been implicated in the disappearance of a college teammate, emerged from seclusion yesterday and asked to speak with the FBI.

Dorchester County Sheriff James W. Phillips Jr. said Dotson, 21, called his department at 2:15 p.m., said he wanted to make a statement and then asked that the FBI be present.

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"He said he wanted to talk; we listened," Phillips said. "There will be no charges filed based on what happened here tonight."

Phillips declined to describe Dotson's statement. Two Dorchester sheriff's detectives picked up the former Baylor University basketball player from his home outside Hurlock and brought him to the county's emergency services complex. He arrived at 3:30 p.m. and was gone by 8:30 p.m.

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Vic Burns, Dotson's former coach at North Dorchester High, picked him up after his meeting with authorities. It was not known where the two went. Burns was the coach when Dotson led the North Dorchester Eagles to the Class 1A state basketball championship in 1999.

Dotson had been in virtual hiding since June 30, the same day court documents in Texas were made public detailing Dotson's possible involvement in the disappearance of Baylor player Patrick Dennehy, 21. The two were roommates for a short period at Baylor.

According to the document, an unidentified informant in Seaford, Del., told police that Dotson had told a cousin he shot Dennehy in the head. The informant said the two were pointing guns at each other near Waco, Texas, when Dennehy was killed. The informant said Dotson disposed of the guns while driving back to Hurlock, a town of 1,874 about 20 miles southeast of Easton.

Dennehy has been missing since mid-June. His sport utility vehicle was discovered abandoned last month in Virginia Beach, Va.

Waco police have described Dotson as a "person of interest" in the case. They are officially calling it a missing person case but have said they are investigating it like a homicide.

Dotson's decision to talk with authorities yesterday came with little warning.

He was interviewed by a Waco police detective shortly after Dennehy's SUV was found June 25. Dotson's attorney, Grady Irvin Jr., said July 9 that his client would not speak to police again without a court order.

Irvin, a St. Petersburg, Fla., attorney known for representing athletes, said he was told yesterday that Dotson hadn't slept in days.

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"We are not aware of any wrongdoing which has taken place on his part in relation to the disappearance of Patrick Dennehy," Irvin said. "It appears that Carlton has opted not to have counsel present."

A spokeswoman at Irvin's office said the attorney arrived in Baltimore last night and was meeting with Dotson. The location was not disclosed. She said Irvin planned to leave Baltimore this morning.

An unidentified woman who answered the phone last night at the Hurlock home where Dotson was raised by his great-grandparents said she would not answer any questions.

"I have no comment," she said, "because I don't know what's going on."

Officials at the FBI office in Baltimore declined to comment last night. An agent from the FBI's Salisbury office attended the meeting yesterday with Dotson, sheriff's officials said.

Waco police spokesman Tommy Tull also declined to comment. He said Waco police will hold a news conference today, their first in a few weeks.

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Dennehy's girlfriend, Jessica De La Rosa, said she was thrilled to hear Dotson was talking to authorities.

"Carlton probably holds the key to a lot of doors right now," she said from her home in New Mexico. "I'm hoping something positive is going to happen out of this."

The Associated Press contributed to this article.


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