Ex-girlfriend testifies about 'psycho with crowbar'

Witness accuses driver/accomplice of threatening to punch her in the mouth.
Cary Ashby
Nov 22, 2013

 

The ex-girlfriend of an attempted murder convict testified she never met the teen who drove his best friend to the scene of a crowbar assault.

Rural Willard resident Alexis Bodkin said Thursday she hadn't met defendant Connor C.D. Holbrook before he drove his best friend, Tyler G. Smith, to her Peru Township home April 21.

"He (Smith) doesn't have a license. I do, so I drove his truck," Holbrook said in an audio recording played for the jury Thursday. "I didn't know what he was going in for. I didn't think he was going to fist-fight the kid."

Holbrook, who turned 20 today, of 840 Kilbourne St., Bellevue, is charged with one count each of conspiracy, attempted murder and obstructing justice as well as two charges of felonious assault. He earlier posted 10 percent of a $100,000 bond. The first day of testimony in Holbrook's trial was Wednesday.

The night of the assault, Bodkins said she got an unexpected phone call from Holbrook.

Reportedly quoting the defendant, Bodkin said, "I'm going to slap you in your ****sucker ... your mouth."

Bodkin also said there was a tweet or text that night in which Smith reportedly "said he was going to smash his (the victim's) teeth down his throat."

"I thought it was just a threat," Bodkin added.

On Nov. 13, Smith, 19, of 223 Hamilton St., Bellevue, was sentenced to nine years in prison for smashing the skull of 19-year-old Austin D. Thornton with a crowbar. The assault happened about 12:30 a.m. April 21 in the driveway at Bodkin's Peru Township home.

In early October, 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.

"Tyler's just crazy," said Bodkin, explaining why she didn't want Smith talking to Thornton, a friend of hers from middle school.

Before the assault, Bodkin said she had told Smith that she became reacquainted with Thornton. However, she denied leading either men on romantically.

Bodkin said she generally had gone "back and forth" between boyfriends; she didn't stay single long between her relationships.

"We (Smith and I) broke up officially in December. We'd break up and get back together," Bodkin said.

After Holbrook parked the truck near her home, Bodkin said she saw Smith walking up the driveway "like a psycho with a crowbar." She said her younger sister saw Smith first when they walked out of her home with Thornton.

"Oh my God. He has something in his hand," Bodkin said, quoting her sister. "We thought it was a tire iron at first."

After the assault, Thornton was driven to Mercy Willard Hospital. Later, a medical helicopter flew him to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo. He was released later from the Dayton Rehabilitation Center.

"I don't remember being in the hospital. I was told I was there a month," said Thornton, who answered questions Thursday from Huron County Prosecutor Russell Leffler with little or no inflection.

"Do you ever get flashes of the attack?," Leffler asked Thornton.

"No," said the victim, who couldn't remember the night of the assault, Holbrook or Smith.

Thornton went to middle school with Bodkins, Smith's ex-girlfriend. Bodkin began texting Thornton daily between April 5 and 20.

"We're just friends. We started talking on Twitter," she said about her relationship with Thornton.

Bodkin said she only found out Smith and Holbrook were "tight" at the end of the time she was dating Smith. She also said she didn't approve of Smith hanging out with Holbrook, but at Leffler's request, she didn't elaborate.

"I just put it out on Twitter. ... I put it out there to the general public," Bodkin said.

She then clarified she didn't have anything specific against Holbrook, but said she didn't like the people who associate with Smith.

The victim was at Bodkin's house the night of the attack. Bodkin said she overheard Thornton answer her phone and tell Smith "you need to stop talking to her like that." Defense attorneys have said a vulgar "Twitter war" and texting between Smith's ex-girlfriend and another woman -- Holbrook's girlfriend -- "got others upset" and led to the attempted murder.

Bodkin testified she doesn't know Holbrook's girlfriend, Brianna M. Boonie. However, before the assault, Bodkin said she responded to Boonie's tweets in which she reportedly called her a slut and "how I will be a horrible mom." Bodkin was two to three months pregnant at the time.

Boonie, 19, of 154 Hamilton St., Apt. 212, 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.

Testimony continued Friday.

Comments

rickross2

Is the kid in the pink shirt the victim?

Cary Ashby

Yes, it is.

whattheBucks

Is that the boy or girl ? If its the boy then he deserves to get beat !

CoopersHawk72

The child looks unhealthy or ill and your comments are rude and unnecessary. You must be very young, do not have children or have way too much time on your hands.

Ehovemom

From pictures on the Prayers for Austin Thornton, he was a healthy, robust, good-looking guy before the brain damage. Prayers he can return as much as possible to his normal self - mentally and physically.

OHIOHOOSIER76

.

ThomasJefferson

I'm guessing that is the victim, and if that is the case, he is lucky to be alive- so shame on you for your comments on his appearance. Of course, it would be way to much to ask of the Reflector to make the photos coincide with the article.

whattheBucks

No kidding t j. And i apologize for my earlier comment ! They kinda made sound and look like he was the one using the crowbar. Totally sorry kid, and i hope you recover completely and justice is served

CoopersHawk72

Thanks whattheBucks-takes a man to admit a mistake. We all make them.

whattheBucks

Boy coop, talk about opening your mouth and shoving your foot half way down your throat ! I'm not sure if you are related to this kid, but if so and he somehow saw that comment please let him know I'm sorry, and let him know that there are people out there praying for his recovery and the justice he deserves

CoopersHawk72

No, not related just got kids and the whole mess makes me sad. Know your heart is in the right place.

rickross2

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Profane, obscene, sexual or derogatory language. Sorry about that folks. Momentary lapse in judgement.

earlduck

this kid is a victim,he shouldn't have to fight to prove his manhood,I'm glad the main perpetrator is in prison,by the way he didn't look like such a man in the courtroom look for mama

ThomasJefferson

Kudos whatthebucks, and you are right... the article and figuring out who is who is confusing. All this because of some garbage who thinks he is a man because he can swing a crowbar. Hope he recovers completely in time.

oz42388

Mess with another mans pregnant gf u deserve to get beat....maybe not with a crow bar but u deserve an a$$ whooping.

deertracker

I have to put some fault on the girl too. She knew what was up. Guys, it's really not worth it. It's just ONE girl. There are millions of women in this world. Next?