In recent developments surrounding basketball sensation Mikey Williams, a plea deal seems to be steering him away from a potential 30-year prison sentence. This comes after Williams faced nine felony counts, potentially leading to the hefty prison sentence. However, the current circumstances indicate that the 19-year-old may avoid jail time. Let’s delve into this case’s specifics and the plea deal’s intricacies.
The incident dates back to March 17, when Williams allegedly shot at a vehicle with six occupants at his residence in Jamul, California. Upset by unexpected visitors, Williams allegedly resorted to threats and discharged a handgun at their departing vehicle, causing damage to the vehicle. The charges include assault with a weapon, firing into an occupied vehicle, and making threats. Despite no injuries reported, the severity of the accusations prompted legal action.
Williams, initially faced nine felony counts related to an incident in March, pleaded guilty to two specific charges before Judge Roderick W. Shelton. The charges include making criminal threats and personal use of a firearm in the commission of a crime. These nine charges carried a possible sentence of over 30 years in prison, which would’ve effectively ended his budding basketball career before it had a chance to blossom fully.
The plea deal, centered on a single felony count related to making a criminal threat, necessitates a commitment from Williams. The firearm charge will be dismissed, and the criminal threat charge reduced to a misdemeanor during his Aug. 12 sentencing, provided Williams fulfills specific conditions. These conditions include completing classes in anger management and gun safety, undergoing cognitive behavioral therapy, and performing 80 hours of community service. Notably, the plea deal imposes a 10-year firearm restriction on Williams and forbids him from possessing a gun.
Williams entered into what is called a plea pass or a deferred prosecution agreement for these charges. “He has certain conditions he’s going to have to do for about a year, and then if he satisfies those conditions, his felony charges are all going to be reduced to one count of a misdemeanor,” said Scott Simmons, a criminal defense attorney at Rossen Law Firm. “This is a common thing we try to get for our clients. It ends up being a really good resolution for most of our clients because it takes those serious felony charges all the way down to a misdemeanor, and depending on the resolution, he could end up sealing that misdemeanor completely off of his record”
If Williams can complete the required classes and community service before his upcoming trial date, these felony charges will be converted to a single misdemeanor. These sorts of arrangements are not uncommon, especially for first-time offenders.
While the two felonies could have carried a maximum of 13 years in prison, Williams’ attorney, Randy A. Grossman, doesn’t anticipate custody. The focus is now on Williams’ potential return to the basketball court, specifically with the University of Memphis. The university had previously outlined restrictions on Williams’ participation in team activities until the legal process in California concluded.
Grossman shared that he has remained in communication with Memphis coach Penny Hardaway and Athletic Director Laird Veatch throughout the negotiation of the plea agreement. Despite the guilty plea, the university remains supportive, emphasizing its belief in Williams. The legal team strategically designed the sentencing date in mid-August, just before the start of the fall semester, to maximize Williams’ eligibility to rejoin the team.
Despite the legal challenges, Williams remains enrolled in online classes at Memphis, where his status with the basketball program hinges on resolving the court case. The early star of the name, image, and likeness era, Williams had secured a multiyear deal with Puma in 2021. However, his NIL valuation and relationship with Puma changed in the aftermath of the legal proceedings. The details of the changes are unclear but are now contingent on completing things outlined in the plea agreement.
You may not become a famous athlete or relate to stardom, but this case is highly relatable. Mikey Williams was someone who made a series of poor decisions that almost had ramifications he would’ve felt for the rest of his life but instead he is getting a second chance. Rossen Law Firm believes that everyone is entitled to a second chance and sometimes a third. This case is something that could happen to anyone. If you or someone you know needs representation following a gun crime in South Florida, contact us today.
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