Wyatt Earp’s owner Adam Kelley pleaded guilty to theft after more than two years of legal troubles, the Tennessee Department of Revenue announced Tuesday.
In March 2020, the Tipton County Grand Jury indicted Kelley on 59 total counts of theft,
false sales tax returns, failing to file a sales tax return and money laundering. The charges include Theft Over $250,000, a Class A Felony offense.
On Monday, Tipton County Circuit Court Judge Blake Neill ordered Kelley to pay $273,963.22 in restitution to the state before entering the plea and to forfeit $9,037.78 of seized funds.
Kelley pleaded guilty to theft of property over $60,000.
“The Department of Revenue has always been committed to making sure Tennessee’s tax laws and procedures are applied uniformly to ensure fairness,” Revenue Commissioner David Gerregano said. “We can never allow individuals engaged in fraudulent tax activity to have a competitive advantage over honest Tennesseans.”
Kelley faced a maximum of 25 years in the state penitentiary and up to $50,000 in fines for theft of property. He could have also been sentenced for up to 12 years and fined up to $25,000 for money laundering. His business, Wyatt Earp’s Steak House, was also indicted, and it could have been fined up to $50,000 for each tax charge.
Wyatt Earp’s, which is named for the famed Western lawman and gambler of the same name, was formerly located on Quinton Drive in Munford before relocating to Covington, in the former Marlo’s Down Under building, several years ago. At the time he was indicted, there were two more locations in Millington and Oakland. The Covington and Millington locations have since closed and Wyatt Earp’s operates only in Oakland.