Former Tennessee Mr. Football and current Tennessee Tech football player Andrew Goldsmith entered a “best interest” plea Monday morning on charges of aggravated burglary and theft.
Goldsmith, 19, was indicted in February after two other men pleaded guilty to similar charges related to the 2016 break-in on Arbor Ridge Cove.
Mark Donahoe, Goldsmith’s attorney, said Goldsmith felt the plea was in his best interest and allowed him to plead without admitting guilt.
“We were able to negotiate an agreement on behalf of Mr. Goldsmith that will allow him to meet certain conditions and continue to allow him to be in school, continue to allow him to play for the football team and Tennessee Tech and to complete his college education,” Donahoe said.
Goldsmith was a student at Trinity Christian Academy before attending Tech.
As part of the conditions of his agreement, Goldsmith will be allowed to travel out-of-state for football games, Donahoe said. He has been placed on judicial diversion, meaning that if Goldsmith does not violate the conditions of his plea agreement, the charges will be expunged from his record.
“As long as he does everything he’s supposed to do, including finish college, this case will be dismissed and his record will be cleaned up as if nothing ever happened,” Donahoe said.
Donahoe said he and Goldsmith were prepared to go to trial if necessary, though Goldsmith “did not want to take a chance” with a trial.
“We were prepared to go forward with trial in this case. However, the plea agreement made by the state and the offer made by the state was of such a nature that he didn’t want to take a chance with a jury trial,” Donahoe said.
Goldsmith will have to pay $1,600 in restitution as part of the agreement.