Ex-Eagle Irving Fryar, Mother Reject Plea Deals, Will Head to Trial
Former Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Irving Fryar and his mother, accused in a mortgage fraud scam in New Jersey, both turned down plea deals in court Tuesday and will head to trial on charges of mortgage fraud.
“I have lost everything,” Fryar’s mother, Allene McGhee, said in court. Both Fryar and his mother live in Willingboro, New Jersey. Fryar was born in Mount Holly and played for the Eagles for three seasons from 1996 to 1998. He remained in the area after retiring, and briefly worked for Action News.
Fryar and McGhee are accused of conspiring with another man, William Barksdale, to obtain five mortgages on McGhee’s Willingboro home last year. Barksdale pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud earlier this year and was sentenced to 20 months in federal prison. Under the plea deal, Fryar and McGhee would have pleaded guilty to second-degree theft by deception and paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in restitution. Fryar would have been sentenced to five years; McGhee three.
Before the state accused him of the mortgage scam last year, Fryar lived a heartwarming tale of redemption and success. The 1984 No. 1 overall pick, Fryar struggled with off-the-field problems early in his career. But he found the Lord, stopped getting into off-the-field problems, and was a much more successful receiver in his 30s than he was in his 20s. His first season with the Eagles, at 34, was the finest of his career: 88 catches, 1,195 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Fryar and McGhee say they were set up by Barksdale. Their trial begins on February 3rd.