Welcome to the summer of awful clipart
Our long nightmare is over. We can finally put this stupidity to rest. The Ashton Broyld case is over, and let us never speak of it again.
This morning in Rochester City Court, Broyld entered a plea to disorderly conduct in satisfaction of his original public lewdness charge, and was sentenced to perform 80 hours of community service and pay a $120 state mandated court surcharge. As disorderly conduct is a non-criminal offense, his file will be sealed and he will not have a criminal record. Sounds like pretty much exactly what I predicted when this story broke back in March.
This whole thing was just stupid. Stupid what he did, stupid how he was charged, and stupid how this plea deal almost didn't happen. Broyld appeared in court a few weeks ago, all set to enter a plea to disorderly conduct, but then things fell through at the last minute when the prosecutor insisted that his plea include language about him exposing himself which, at the time, Broyld was not willing to admit. That, to me, is stupid. If I'm a prosecutor (and I never plan to be, BTW), if I offer a plea to disorderly conduct in satisfaction of a higher charge, all I would require is for the defendant to admit that he engaged in some sort of conduct in public that served no legitimate purpose or caused a public annoyance, inconvenience, or alarm. That's what disorderly conduct is. Disorderly conduct doesn't require you to admit you exposed yourself; exposure or public lewdness would. For me, it would have been enough for Broyld to admit that he got angry during or after the basketball game, used a few choice words, and made an obscene gesture toward the crowd. Whether or not Little Ashton made an appearance to me is irrelevant.
Do I see the other side of the argument? Sure. He did what he did and he should own up to it. Yeah. I get that. But when there's a genuine issue of fact on one particular fact, but the other facts are incontrovertible, and those facts amount to a crime (or here, a violation offense), then just admit to that and get it over with. The fact that they had to wait a few weeks to finally get a disposition of the case just over that one issue I think is stupid and a waste of everyone's time.
But the whole thing was stupid to begin with. One thing is for sure: Doug Marrone won't put up with crap like that on the Syracuse football team, which Broyld joins this coming weekend. As his lawyer stated, Broyld is embarassed for his actions and putting his family, friends, teammates, and school(s) through this, but he looks at it as a learning experience and is excited to be moving on. Let's all hop on board and move on.
And if the authorities want to redirect their crime-fighting efforts on something that really matters, they ought to launch an investigation into the Big East Scheduling Offices. That's where crimes are being committed.