Ex-Ohio State, Colts player pleads guilty in scam

Associated Press
September 15, 2011
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Former Ohio State and Indianapolis Colts quarterback Art Schlichter pleaded guilty Thursday to state theft charges linked to a sports ticket-fraud scheme and apologized to a woman who lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in the plot.

In a deal worked out with state and federal prosecutors, Schlichter pleaded guilty to 12 theft counts and one corrupt activity count and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. He also was ordered to pay more than $800,000 in restitution, although a prosecutor conceded victims were likely to never see the money.

Schlichter will appear Friday in federal court, where he faces related charges of bank and wire fraud and filing a false tax return. Schlichter has indicated he'll plead guilty to those charges, though no date for accepting the plea has been set.

Schlichter, 51, whose professional football career was derailed by a gambling addiction, apologized Thursday to the victims of the scheme, in which he charged hundreds of thousands of dollars for sports tickets he never delivered.

"I'm sorry for all the pain I've caused you and all the other victims that are involved in this," he said, his remarks at times aimed at Anita Barney of suburban Dublin, who sat in the courtroom directly behind him.

"My hope is that I can get myself together, rehab myself, do the right thing, get healthy so that I can make amends to everybody that I've hurt and harmed in any way," he said. "It was never my intention setting out to hurt people."

Schlichter said he was ashamed of his addiction.

Barney, the 69-year-old widow of a former Wendy's Co. president, has been ruined by Schlichter, said her attorney, William Loveland. Her homes are being foreclosed and her only income is from Social Security, he said.

"He's proven more than once he's a predator," Loveland said. "He's shown no remorse for the situation he created."

Judge Timothy Horton told Schlichter he was disappointed in his actions.

Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O'Brien said afterward he was pleased with the convictions, while noting that many other victims remained in the wings after deciding not to file charges.

Schlichter's attorney, Scott Weisman, said it's taken his client hitting "rock bottom" to realize he has to change his ways. He said that one day the money will be paid back.

"Art is remorseful. Art wants to turn his life around. He wants to give back," Weisman said.

Federal investigators say Schlichter used the money he took promising Ohio State and NFL tickets and spent it on personal expenses, gambling and to repay older debts.

Schlichter played at Ohio State between 1978 and 1981 and was the No. 4 pick in the 1982 NFL draft by the Baltimore Colts, who moved to Indianapolis two years later. The Colts released him in 1985, mostly due to his gambling problems. The NFL eventually suspended him for life.

The ex-quarterback has spent much of the last 25 years in prison due to numerous financial-related felonies related to his gambling addiction.


Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Thank you to the scientists who care enough to find a cure. We are so lucky that their intelligence has brought them to these understandings because it is through these understandings that we have new hope. Certainly the medicine will be expensive, these drugs usually are, especially the ones that are not mass produced. If I know anything from the walks that my town has put on for FA it is this: people care and people want to help. Donations and financial support can and will come to those who need it. All we need is a cure, the money will come. I mean, look at what these scientists have done thanks to the generosity of donors. 30 million dollars brings us here where we can talk about a drug's existence! There is so much to be frustrated about in this world, but this scientific break is not one of them. I am so happy for this new found hope. Thank you so much to the scientists who have been slaving away to help my friends with FA. We wish you speedy success in the time to come!

  2. I love tiny neighborhood bars-- when I travel city to city for work, it's my preference to find them. However, too many still having smoking inside. So I'm limited to bars in the cities that have smoking bans. I travel to Kokomo often, and I can promise, I'll be one of those people who visit the ma and pa bars once they're smoke free!

  3. I believe the issue with keystone & 96th was due to running out of funds though there were other factors. I just hope that a similar situation does not befall ST RD 37 where only half of the overhaul gets built.

  4. It's so great to see a country founded on freedom uphold the freedom for all people to work and patronize a public venue without risking their health! People do not go to bars to smoke, they can take it outside.

  5. So, Hurko, mass transit has not proven itself in Indy so we should build incredibly expensive train lines? How would that fix the lack of demand? And as far as those double decker buses to bus people in from suburbs, we can't fill up a regular sized buses now and have had to cancel lines and greatly subsidize others. No need for double decker buses there.