Suspended Tennessee Titans cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones will plead no contest to a gross misdemeanor charge of conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct as part of a plea agreement regarding felony charges against him in Las Vegas.
Jones had been charged felony coercion after his alleged role in starting a fight inside a Las Vegas strip club that led to a triple shooting in the club’s parking lot Feb. 19.
Jones had been charged with inciting the fight, along with other members of his party that night, hair stylist Sadia Morrison and Jones’ bodyguard Robert Reid.
The plea agreement has already been worked out, but won’t be official until Thursday because of a scheduling conflict in Clark County District Court.
By reaching this agreement, it will end the criminal charges against Jones in the matter.
“We are pleading to the charge of conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct, which is not the same as disorderly conduct,” Jones’ attorney Manny Arora said. “We do not believe Adam was involved, and the police have no link to show Adam involved with the shooter in any way. This plea is not an admission of guilt, but it is better for us to reach this deal than to have the case continue to drag on for perhaps another year.”
One of the people shot in the parking lot, club security guard Tom Urbanski, was paralyzed from the waist down. Civil lawsuits from all three victims have been filed against Jones.
Under terms of the plea deal, Jones will tell police any information he knows about the case, as police are still trying to identify the triggerman in the crime. Jones will avoid jail time in the matter as well.
“Adam has already told the police everything he knows, and he will testify in the case, if called by the prosecution,” Arora said.
Matthew Duschoff, a Las Vegas attorney who filed the civil lawsuit on behalf of Urbanski and his wife, said he would reserve judgment as to how the plea might affect his case against Jones.
“We are really in wait-and-see mode to see whether or not the plea agreement affects our case. We need to review all aspects of the plea, and hear any testimony he might give and also what information he might provide in that testimony,” Duschoff said.
According to Nashville attorney Peter Strianse, a former federal prosecutor who is now a criminal defense attorney, the no contest plea is not an admission of guilt and also can help Jones’ attorneys as they defend any subsequent civil lawsuits.
“It is not an admission of guilt, and it also cannot be used as such in the pending civil lawsuits against him,” said Strianse, who represented former Titans cornerback Samari Rolle in his domestic assault case in 2004.
Jones also will not be sentenced until after he gives his testimony in the case. The other two members of Jones’ group that night are also expected to accept similar plea deals to avoid jail time in exchange for their testimony.
As part of the plea agreement, Jones will be placed on 12 months probation, do 200 hours of community service (though it does not have to be performed in the state of Nevada), undergo drug testing and enroll in anger management counseling.
Efforts to reach Clark County District Attorney David Roger were unsuccessful on Tuesday.
Regarding his NFL career, the NFL Players Association could know soon when their appeal of Jones’ year-long suspension by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will be heard by the commissioner. Goodell refused to reinstate Jones after 10 games last week, saying the cornerback would have to serve the full year of the suspension.
“The charges against Adam were one of the big hurdles that needed to be cleared in order for him to be reinstated. We had kept the commissioner’s office informed that a settlement in the case could happen,” Arora said.
Greg Aiello, director of communications for the NFL, declined comment in the latest developments involving the Titans cornerback. The Titans also had no comment regarding the issue.
Jones still has a felony obstruction of an officer charge pending in Georgia, which has been continued until next year. There is the possibility that a plea agreement in that case can be completed as well.
“It is likely that a resolution can be reached there in much the same way, regarding that charge,” Arora said.
It is unclear whether the public drunkenness charge from 2006 in Murfreesboro could be revived, as a result of the plea agreement in Las Vegas. In that case, Jones was order to stay trouble free for a period of six months in order to have that charge expunged from his record.