A Bellevue area man pleaded guilty Thursday to attempted murder in the April 21 crowbar attack of a 19-year-old Dayton area resident that left him clinging to life.
Attempted murder, a charge to which 19-year-old Tyler G. Smith pleaded to, is a first-degree felony and carries a prison term of three to 11 years.
"I've worked very hard on this case and I thought it's a fair resolution," defense attorney Tom Nicholson said.
Huron County Common Pleas Judge Jim Conway placed Smith on a personal recognizance bond pending his sentencing hearing, scheduled for 8:45 a.m. Nov. 13. As conditions of his bond, he must wear an ankle monitor and a GPS system. Conway told Smith he would have to pay for the system, which is new, at his own expense.
Conway ordered Smith to remain at his parents house until sentencing, with two exceptions: Court appearances or a pre-sentence investigation interview, which the judge ordered.
Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler also requested the judge order that Smith have no contact with the victim or his family and no Internet access.
"I think those are reasonable conditions as well," Conway said, adding he's also forbidden from contacting the victim through third parties.
Following the guilty verdict, Leffler said he was satisfied.
"We're thinking he's going to just lay low with the parents" and the Huron County Sheriff's Office will monitor the situation closely, Leffler said.
"Attempted murder is the most serious charge," the prosecutor said. "We'll be asking probably for an 11-year prison sentence. (It was a) horrible crime."
"I think we had a very, very strong case," Huron County Sheriff's Detective Sgt. Josh Querin said. He credited the detective bureau with working "countless hours."
Smith was charged with one count each of conspiracy, attempted murder and tampering with evidence and two charges of felonious assault.
The victim was first transported to Willard Mercy Hospital. He then was taken to the neuro-intensive car unit of Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo, where he was in critical condition for a period of time. He was later released to a Dayton-area rehabilitation facility, but has been released. He's had multiple brain surgeries. Leffler has said Willard Mercy officials gave Thornton an 80-percent chance..."of dying."
Smith's co-defendants are Connor C.D. Holbrook, 19, of 840 Kilbourne St. and Brianna M. Boonie, 19, of 154 Hamilton St., Apt. 212.
Holbrook's final pretrial is set for 10 a.m. Nov. 12, with a trial date 9 a.m. Nov. 19.
Boonie's final pretrial is 9 a.m. Nov. 26, with a trial date 10 a.m. Dec. 10.
Holbrook is charged with conspiracy, attempted murder and obstructing justice as well as two charges of felonious assault. He has posted 10 percent of a $100,000 bond.
Bonnie is charged with one count each of conspiracy to commit aggravated murder or murder and obstructing justice.