Love triangle led to crowbar attack

Three Bellevue teens accused of trying to kill a Dayton-area teen last month appear in court Monday on attempted murder charges. Victim expected to survive.
Jessica Cuffman
May 21, 2013


Tyler Smith, Connor Holbrook, and Brianna Boonie, all 19, were charged with conspiracy to commit aggravated murder, in connection with the April 22 attack of Austin Thornton, 19.

Smith and Holbrook, in custody since the alleged assault, appeared Monday in Huron County Common Pleas Court, where Judge James Conway continued their bonds at $100,000 apiece.  

Boonie was charged in a secret indictment and then arrested. In addition to the conspiracy charge, she also is charged with obstruction of justice. Her bond is $75,000.

The three are accused of planning the attack against Thornton and tracking him to a home on Ohio 99 near Willard. Smith has been singled out as the primary attacker in the assault, as he allegedly used a crowbar to beat Thornton so badly, his girlfriend thought he would die.

The three suspects left the home after the attack, and Thornton's girlfriend and another woman drove him to a Willard hospital.

Police found Smith, Holbrook and Boonie — Holbrook's girlfriend — at Boonie's apartment in Bellevue, Huron County prosecutor Russ Leffler said.

While investigators have declined to say how Thornton and his attackers knew each other, Leffler said the dispute stemmed for a disagreement about relationships with a woman. Thornton has since has been transferred from a hospital to a rehabilitation center in Dayton.

"He's doing better. I don't know how long he'll be there," Leffler said. "It might be six months before they know how he'll do long term."

Holbrook and Smith also face additional charges of attempted murder, two counts of felonious assault and tampering with evidence. Holbrook is also charged with obstructing justice.

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I'm assuming you mean 'triangle', yes? Now kids are killing each other over girls. Stupid with a capital S.


Lock em up for life. They have been nothing but slimebags their entire lives. Nice parental upbringing. The parents should serve time too. Collective IQ of these three fools and their spawn recepticals are not even a whole number.

2cents's picture

There are more women out there than men, move on. Now you have wasted your lives, what childish a--ho--s.


Love and jelousy are some of the most common motives for murder. But Whatre these idiots thinking? No girl is worth your life in the joint. Its ashame all the lives ruined from this childish act. A lot of lives will never be the same. It's crazy but one bad day or even a hour for that matter can change the rest of your life and that of many others as well. Be smart kids and try and do the right things


Where's Brianna?


Does anyone know how Mr. Thornton is doing? I just have to say AGAIN that I don't understand why this is an "attempted murder" charge and yet the man from Sandusky that beat the Bellevue man with a brick and only stopped when someone spotted him attacking the man only got six years for aggravated assault. If one is attempted murder, why isn't the other?


Austin is going home today. Prosecutors get to use discretion when choosing what to charge people with as long as the grand jury chooses to indict, so it's not a one shoe fits all approach. Prosecutors commonly choose the greatest charge so there is room to plea bargain. Chances are at least one of these boys will get a plea deal for a reduced charge than attempted murder.


Thank goodness the victim is doing better! I do not condone this type of behavior at all-but really?-bash all of their parents?

I pray my children don't ever do anything like this-but no matter what-you raise your kids the best you can and love them anyways when they screw up.

I hope some young men and women learn from this horrible tragedy. Women can be so toxic.

*I don't know any of these people or their parents*