Former Jaguars LB Telvin Smith Pleads No Contest to Child Abuse Charge

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIMay 22, 2021

FILE - In this Sept. 16, 2018, file photo, Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith (50) gestures to fans during the first half of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots in Jacksonville, Fla. Smith, the team’s leading tackler the last two seasons and a Pro Bowl selection in 2017, is stepping away from football to “give this time back to myself, my family & my health.” (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File)
AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack, File

Former Jacksonville Jaguars linebacker Telvin Smith pled "nolo contendere" (no contest) to a third-degree child abuse charge Friday, 13 months after being arrested on unlawful sexual activity with a 17-year-old girl, per Vic Micolucci of News 4 Jacksonville.

Smith, 30, has received three years probation as part of the plea agreement, although Micolucci notes that one year has been waived because of his time on bond following his arrest.

In addition, the state has withheld adjudication of guilt, per Mark Long of the Associated Press.

Smith must also go through psychosexual counseling, and he cannot have any contact with the victim, according to Anne Schindler and Dawn White of First Coast News.

The former Florida State Seminole also can't have any contact with any girl under 18 years of age (not counting his immediate family). Smith must pay $560 in court costs as well.

ESPN's Mike DiRocco outlined the circumstances leading to Smith's arrest, which occurred on April 29, 2020, at his Jacksonville home by the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office following a sixth-month investigation:

"ESPN obtained a copy of the arrest warrant, and in it Smith is accused of sexually abusing a 17-year-old girl multiple times, both at his home and in his vehicle. The victim told Smith the day they first met she had recently turned 17, and a witness corroborated that, according to the warrant."

Smith played in the NFL from 2014 to 2018, spending his entire professional stint with the Jaguars. In Oct. 2017, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Smith agreed to a four-year, $50 million extension with the Jaguars.

In May 2019, Smith announced that he would be stepping away from football to get his "world in order" and take care of himself, his family and health. Two months later, the Jaguars placed him on the reserved/retired list.

Smith has not returned to football since.