GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Former Michigan State University basketball star Keith Appling changed his guilty plea Monday, the day of his trial for the fatal shooting of 66-year-old Clyde Edmonds.
Before the start of jury selection, Appling took a plea deal, pleading guilty to second-degree murder and a felony firearm charge. In exchange, two other weapons charges were dismissed by Wayne County Circuit Judge Michael Hathaway.
According to NBC affiliate WDIV in Detroit, the sentencing agreement is for 18 to 40 years on the murder charge and two years on the felony firearm charge, which would be served consecutively.
Appling was accused of fatally shooting Edmonds on May 22, 2021, in a dispute over a gun. Appling allegedly fired several shots and fled. He was arrested by Michigan State Police troopers two days later.
Appling was a high school star in Detroit before playing four seasons for Tom Izzo at Michigan State from 2010 to 2014. He was not selected in the 2014 NBA draft but had three brief NBA stints, including two with the Orlando Magic.
Appling has also served time for a 2017 incident where he pleaded guilty to carrying a concealed weapon and attempting to resist or obstruct a police officer and was given probation after officers found about 20 grams of heroin inside his vehicle in 2018.
Natalie Bannister, Appling’s girlfriend, was also charged in the case. She was accused of driving Appling away from the shooting scene and lying to investigators about his whereabouts. According to WDIV, Bannister took a plea deal last July and was sentenced to 18 months of probation.
Following Appling’s 2021 arrest, his former coach told News 8 that he was upset by the news.
“I’m thinking about him. I feel bad about him. It’s a shame what has happened,” Izzo said.
A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for March 3.