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Zach Smith reaches plea deal in disorderly conduct lawsuit

OSU coaches Tony Alford (left) and Zach Smith stand together before the Buckeyes game against Rutgers on Oct. 1. Credit: Alexa Mavrogianis | Former Photo Editor

The court case that eventually led to the termination of an Ohio State football assistant coach, as well as the suspension of head coach Urban Meyer and athletic director Gene Smith has finally come to an end.

Former Ohio State wide receivers coach Zach Smith accepted a plea deal on Tuesday to end his criminal trespassing charge, pleading guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct, part of Ohio Section Code 2917.11B2, according to court records from the City of Delaware Municipal Court. As a result, he will have to pay a fine of $289.

Zach Smith’s ex-wife, Courtney Smith, was also awarded a three-year domestic violence protection order against her ex-husband, according to Stadium’s Brett McMurphy. 

The memorandum of understanding, obtained by The Lantern, reads that the civil protection order is not “an admission of any wrongdoing or finding of any wrongdoing by Mr. Smith” and does say that “in case number 18CRB01399,” Zach Smith “did not commit any violent acts against Courtney Smith.” It is unclear if he committed any acts of domestic violence against Courtney Smith in the past.

The Lantern has made a records request for the civil protection order, but has not received it at the time of publication.

Zach Smith denied the domestic violence accounts on Twitter on Tuesday, saying that he was “falsely accused of very serious allegations” and that this has “ruined my professional career.”

The Lantern reached out to Courtney Smith’s attorney for comment, but did not hear back by the time of publication.

The original complaint for this case was brought on May 22 as a criminal trespass case under Ohio Section Code 2911.21. Reports later emerged that Smith had a history of domestic abuse against Courtney Smith, stemming back to a 2009 incident in which he allegedly “grabbed the victim by her t-shirt, picked her up and threw her into a bedroom wall,” according to police reports from Gainesville Police.

Another incident was later reported as having taken place in 2015 when Smith was arrested for felonious assault and domestic violence in Powell, Ohio. He was fired on July 23. Smith had previously coached with Meyer during the pair’s tenure at Florida until Meyer retired after the 2010 season. When Meyer returned to coaching with Ohio State in 2012, he hired Smith to be his wide receivers coach. 

*Updated at 9:54 a.m. on Oct. 24, 2018 with information from Memorandum of Understanding

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