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Fired Ohio State Coach Zach Smith Pleads Guilty To Reduced Charges

In this Sept. 17, 2016, file photo, Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer, right, and then-assistant coach Zach Smith, left, gesture from the sidelines during an NCAA college football game against Oklahoma in Norman, Okla.
Sue Ogrocki
Associated Press
Former assistant football coach Zach Smith, left, and head coach Urban Meyer.

Former Ohio State assistant football coach Zach Smith reached a settlement in his criminal trespass case on Tuesday.

Powell Police charged Smith with criminal trespass and disorderly conduct in May. Police say he violated a protection order against his ex-wife, Courtney Smith.

According to Delaware County Municipal Court records, the Smiths reached a memorandum of understanding that resolved the case. As part of the resolution, Courtney Smith was granted a three-year civil protection order.

Zach Smith pleaded guilty to a reduced misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct and will pay $150 in court fees.

In an emailed statement, Courtney Smith’s lawyer Julia Leveridge said that the three-year protection order was not agreed upon mutually. Leveridge says the agreement is in the best interest of the Smiths’ children, and that Courtney Smith believes “that a public trial would have had a negative impact on the children, and their safety and well-being has always been her priority.”

On Tuesday, Zach Smith posted a message on Twitter: “Charges dropped. Cases dismissed. Faith, patience & the truth will always prevail.”

In the memorandum, all parties agreed there was no violence or threat of violence connected to the May 12 incident, when Zach Smith was supposed to return one of his two children to Courtney in a public place near her apartment in Powell. When Zach was late, Courtney told him not to come to her apartment, but he drove his vehicle onto her driveway.

The agreement says Zach did not exit his vehicle or threaten her at any time.

Zach Smith was fired by head coach Urban Meyer on July 23 after the charges were filed, and following allegations he had abused Courtney Smith while they were married.

Meyer came under national scrutiny for his comments on Zach Smith at a Big Ten Media Days event, prompting an Ohio State investigation into his knowledge of domestic violence complaints. Meyer was suspended without pay in September for about three weeks, along with athletics director Gene Smith.

In a Twitter statement, Zach Smith maintained his innocence, saying he was "falsely accused of very serious allegations that should not be taken lightly. As well as charged with breaking a law that I did not break."

Adora Namigadde was a reporter for 89.7 NPR News. She joined WOSU News in February 2017. A Michigan native, she graduated from Wayne State University with a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in French.