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Man gets 10 years for liquor store burglary
Crime occurred in May 2008
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Forsyth County News

The case of a liquor store burglary wrapped up Tuesday in Forsyth County Superior Court, more than five years after the crime.

Edsel Whitaker, 60, of Atlanta was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 10 years on probation for commercial burglary.

Whitaker and Dexter Baker of Lithonia have both pleaded guilty to the May 26, 2008, burglary of the World Beverage on Ga. 400 in north Forsyth.

The two reportedly took 36 handles, or 1.75-liter bottles, of Crown Royal from the store about 1 a.m. on Memorial Day that year.

Whitaker said Tuesday that they used a brick to break through the glass door, grabbed six cases of liquor and drove away in Baker’s car.

He said Baker had asked him to come to Forsyth County to help fix his car.

Whitaker said he didn’t know what was going to happen until Baker threw the brick and asked him if he wanted to make some money.

Forsyth County Assistant District Attorney James Dunn said Whitaker has “an extensive criminal history,” which contributed to the state’s recommendation for time to serve.

Whitaker’s attorney, Philip Cummings, said he’d been incarcerated in Kentucky for two years until he was extradited to Georgia to face this charge.

As conditions of his probation, Whitaker must also pay a $5,000 fine, perform 120 hours of community service and not return to Forsyth County.

His co-defendant, Baker, pleaded guilty to burglary and fleeing or attempting to elude in April 2009, and received a sentence of six years in prison and six years on probation.

Baker had an additional charge due to the police chase that ensued on Ga. 400. A patrolling deputy attempted a traffic stop when Baker made an improper turn, and the chase began.

Whitaker got out after about a tenth of a mile, and he was later seen walking on Hubbard Town Road and arrested.