Jones pleads no contest in strip-club melee
LAS VEGAS -- Suspended NFL player Adam "Pacman" Jones pleaded no contest Thursday to a reduced charge in a Las Vegas strip-club melee that preceded a triple shooting, which left a man paralyzed.
The Tennessee Titans cornerback appeared in Clark County District Court to take a plea deal that officials said will get him probation in return for his testimony about the gunman who opened fire outside the club at the end of NBA All-Star weekend in February.
The 24-year-old Jones, who is seeking reinstatement to the Titans, said little during the brief arraignment. He doffed a blue Texas Rangers baseball cap as he walked into court, handed it to a lawyer and answered "Yes, sir" to a judge who asked him if he understood the plea deal.
Jones will be sentenced to one year of probation for agreeing not to contest a charge of conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct, a gross misdemeanor, and to testify about the gunman.
Prosecutors dropped two charges of coercion, a felony carrying a possible sentence of one to six years in prison.
Clark County prosecutor Victoria Villegas has said authorities hope Jones can help identify the gunman.
Defense attorney Robert Langford has declined to say if Jones knows the shooter's identity.
No one has been charged in shooting, and Las Vegas police have not linked Jones to the gunfire.
Police have instead called Jones the instigator of the melee that broke out inside the club after he showered dancers with dollar bills pulled from a black plastic trash bag -- a stunt known as "making it rain."
Witnesses told police that Jones and members of his entourage threatened people while they were being ejected and that Jones spoke outside the club with the man who was suspected of opening fire minutes later.
Under the plea deal, Jones will receive a suspended one-year jail sentence and must attend an anger management program, complete 200 hours of community service within a year and submit to random drug testing.
Langford said the probation and community service requirements might be fulfilled near Jones' home in Tennessee. Jones is already subject to the NFL's drug-testing program.
Two co-defendants in the case also took plea deals that Langford said should spare each jail time. Langford represents all three.
The plea had been scheduled Wednesday but was postponed one day after Jones' bodyguard, Robert "Big Rob" Reid, missed a flight from Los Angeles, Langford said.
Reid, 37, of Carson, Calif., pleaded no contest to conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct in return for a promise of one year of probation. Reid had faced a felony coercion charge.
Sadia Morrison, 25, of New York, pleaded no contest to a felony battery charge in return for dropping other felony charges. Morrison had faced five charges, including coercion, assault with a deadly weapon and battery. She will be sentenced to three years' probation, and her conviction would be reduced to a gross misdemeanor if she stays out of trouble, Langford said.
Morrison, wearing red stiletto heels and a black minidress and leggings, told the court she understood the plea.
Jones left the courthouse swarmed by reporters and photographers. He pushed a television camera out of his face before he got into an SUV and drove away.
The three people wounded in the Feb. 19 shooting -- club employee Tommy Urbanski, co-worker and bouncer Aaron Cudworth and club patron Natalie Jones -- have each have filed civil lawsuits seeking damages from Jones.
The lawsuit by Urbanski, who was paralyzed from the waist down, also seeks damages from the NFL, the Titans and the owners of Harlem Knights, a Houston strip club that hosted events at the Minxx club.
Urbanski's wife, Kathy, has expressed anger about Jones' plea deal and said she wants the gunman identified and charged.
Jones has been arrested six times since the Titans drafted him in April 2005 from West Virginia and has other criminal cases pending. A felony count of obstruction in Georgia from a February 2006 arrest has been postponed, and August 2006 public intoxication and disorderly charges in Tennessee were delayed pending the outcome of the Las Vegas case.
Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended Jones for the 2007 season for violating the league's personal conduct policy. Jones and the NFL Players Association have asked Goodell to reconsider.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press
MORE NFL HEADLINES
- Backup Manziel says he needs to earn way
- Doctors: Jim Kelly has no evidence of cancer
- Texans' Clowney exits practice after collision
- Sources: Bengals extend Burfict for 4 years
MOST SENT STORIES ON ESPN.COM
NFL'S ZERO TOLERANCE
Roger Goodell is cracking down on the player misconduct that's plagued his term as NFL commissioner, suspending Tennessee's Adam "Pacman" Jones (right) for the 2007 season and Cincinnati's Chris Henry and Tank Johnson (left) for eight games. Henry and Johnson have since been reinstated after serving their penalties.
Pacman News• Judge cuts Titans out of Pacman lawsuit in Vegas
• Titans try to quash shooting victim's lawsuit
• NFL denies Pacman's appeal to return in 2007
• Union appeals Pacman's 'excessive' suspension
• NFL to hear union's appeal on Pacman's behalf
• Pacman pleads no contest in strip club melee
• Goodell reviewing union Pacman appeal
• Judge accepts 'Pacman' plea agreement
• Report: Pacman to accept Las Vegas plea deal
• Union appeals to commish to reduce Pacman ban
• Union to appeal ruling that Pacman must sit year
• Report: Some Titans want Pacman back
• Pacman won't be reinstated early
• Uncertainty surrounds Pacman's talk with Goodell
• Pacman, Goodell to meet, discuss reinstatement
• Vegas evidentiary hearing postponed
• Strip club manager sues Pacman, Titans, NFL
• Report: Pacman says he's earned early return
• Pacman wins tag-team title
• Pacman to try hand at hip-hop
• Pacman to set record straight in interview
• Pacman makes TNA debut
• Titans obtain order to stop Pacman from wrestling
• Pacman's ticket violations dismissed
• Pacman makes first TNA appearance
• Arrests? By Pacman's count, he's only had two
• Agent: Pacman won't wrestle for TNA
• Pacman defense expected to enter not guilty plea
• NFL may allow Pacman to work out with Titans
• Lawyer: Deputy pledged to pull over Pacman
• Vegas charges may affect Pacman's Tenn. plea
• Vegas bouncer sues Pacman
• VY: Teammates feel Pacman doesn't care
• Cops seek Pacman about shooting involving crew
• Paralyzed victim rebuilds life
• Sources: Pacman at strip club before hearing
• Pacman takes out ad to apologize
• NFL bans Pacman for 2007 season
• Pacman-related incidents
Johnson News• Johnson: Cowboys 'great opportunity'
• Johnson agrees to deal with Cowboys
• Johnson doesn't blame Bears for waiving him
• Johnson won't face charges in Arizona
• Bears waive Tank Johnson
• Tank Johnson suspended eight games
Henry News• Henry in altercation with parking attendant
• Ky. confirms Henry didn't fail test
• Bengals hope Henry gets message
Analysis• Pasquarelli: Bears have no regrets
• Clayton: Tank suspension makes sense
• Pasquarelli: Titans picking up hte pieces
• Garber: Pacman gifted on field, troubled off it
• Ex-Titans GM Reese: We tried to help Pacman