"Hell no. You can quote me" - No plea deal for attempted murder defendant

Accomplice to be sentenced today
Cary Ashby
Nov 13, 2013

The trial of an attempted murder case will go forward next week and the jurors likely will view the crime scene.

Connor C.D. Holbrook, 19, of 840 Kilbourne St., Bellevue, goes to trial Tuesday in Huron County Common Pleas Court. He is charged with conspiracy, attempted murder and obstructing justice as well as two charges of felonious assault. Holbrook remains out, having posted 10 percent of a $100,000 bond.

Judge Jim Conway, at the beginning of this week's hearing, said the state and defense attorney Ed Rhode were "unable to reach a plea agreement" even though Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler has made an unspecified offer.

"It's going to be a record-intensive case from what I've heard," Conway said.

Before the hearing started, the Reflector asked Rhode if there was going to a plea.

"Hell no. You can quote me," Rhode said. "Not the way it's charged."

Holbrook and two co-defendants are charged in connection with the April 21 attack of a 19-year-old Dayton-area resident. The victim was clinging to life after Tyler G. Smith, 19, of Bellevue, smashed his skull with a crowbar, but has been released from a Toledo hospital and a Dayton-area rehabilitation facility.

The jury in Holbrook's case is expected to view the crime scene before testimony begins Tuesday.

"We'd like to have everyone driven down the driveway, around the horseshoe and back onto the road," Rhode said.

On Oct. 3, Smith pleaded guilty to attempted murder. As part of a plea deal, prosecutors dismissed one count each of conspiracy and tampering with evidence plus two charges of felonious assault. Smith will be sentenced today.

Holbrook's girlfriend, Brianna M. Boonie, 19, of Bellevue, has a Dec. 10 trial date on one count each of conspiracy to commit aggravated murder or murder and obstructing justice. She posted a $75,000 bond May 23 -- about four days after being arrested in court on the warrant.

About a week after Smith pleaded guilty, Conway revoked the defendant's $500,000 bond.

The defendant violated his bond by using the Internet to communicate with his suspected accomplices. Attorneys said Smith's texts that violated his bond contained rather "innocuous" messages about having trouble sleeping and being concerned because it was earlier text correspondence -- of 100 to 200 messages with "awful, sailor-talk" between two women -- that "got others upset" and led to the attempted murder.

The Bellevue teenager, who had been on electronically-monitored house arrest, said multiple times he should have paid closer attention to Conway's order of not being on the Internet.

"I am truly sorry," Smith said during the Oct. 9 bond hearing.