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Art Schlichter Indicted By Franklin County Grand Jury

A former Ohio State University quarterback has been indicted by a Franklin County grand jury on 13 felony counts; mainly for theft. Art Schlichter, 51, faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison if he's convicted on all charges. Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien made the announcement. A grand jury found evidence that Art Schlichter had engaged in a pattern of corrupt activity. "It's alleged that for the past year and a half Mr. Schlichter has been obtaining money, credit card charges, and loans under false pretenses and that he's done it as a pattern or practice on a regular basis," O'Brien said. The charges allege the 51-year-old Schlichter and several unnamed associates bilked people out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Schlichter surrendered in February and remains in jail. Defense attorney Sam Shamansky says the indictment was expected and it does not eliminate the possibility of a plea deal. In one count, Schlichter is charged with deceiving elderly Dublin widow Anita Barney; obtaining from her $100,000 or more. In another instance, Prosecutor O'Brien says Schlichter offered to sell Ohio State sports paraphernalia. And though he took the money he did not deliver the goods. "OSU memorabilia in the form of an MVP award, a ring from a championship season and equipment such as jerseys and a helmet," O'Brien said. "None of those items were given to the victim and I believe he provided $12,000 to Mr. Schlichter for that purpose and neither received his money nor the equipment." O'Brien says negotiations on a plea deal have been in the works but he says the magnitude of the offenses would probably result in a jail sentence anyway if Schlichter is convicted. "He faces up to thirty or more years and count one actually carries a mandatory prison sentence. And I would say that given Mr. Schlichter's past as well as his current status as being on probation that jail time will result no matter what the outcome," O'Brien said.