ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KTSM) – 19-year-old University of New Mexico student Jonathan Smith pleaded guilty to two charges on Thursday, as part of a plea deal according to the Bernalillo County District Attorney.
Smith is one of three UNM students charged in an alleged revenge plot against New Mexico State men’s basketball player Mike Peake that resulted in a Nov. 19 shooting that left 19-year-old Brandon Travis dead and Peake injured.
According to the District Attorney, Smith pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit aggravated battery and tampering with evidence.
Smith faces up to three years of incarceration. Sentencing will be held at a later date. He was arrested in the days following the shooting, but was granted a pretrial release and was living with his mother in Plano, Texas.
He had also been charged with aggravated battery and tampering with evidence. However, it appears those charges may have been dropped as part of the plea agreement. Prosecutors said in December that Smith had agreed to testify against fellow conspirator, Eli’Sha Upshaw.
Upshaw and a 17-year-old female also face charges for their alleged role in the plot to lure Peake to campus that night in retaliation for a fight at the UNM-NMSU football game on Oct. 15 in Las Cruces. Upshaw pleaded not guilty earlier this month. Those two cases are still pending.
Surveillance footage shows the 17-year-old girl arriving on campus with Peake early in the morning of Nov. 19. Three men then approach him and Travis points a gun at Peake’s face. Police allege that Upshaw hit Peake with a baseball bat; Peake then runs away, at which time police say Travis fired his gun at Peake, hitting him once. Peake returned fire, hitting Travis four times and killing him.
Neither Peake, nor anyone else associated with New Mexico State University have been charged with a crime in relation to the case two months after the shooting. Peake was suspended indefinitely from the NMSU men’s basketball team in the days following the shooting.
The Bernalillo County District Attorney is conducting its own investigation into the shooting and the lead-up to it, as is NMSU.