A former TCU student may face up to 10 years in prison if found guilty for the aggravated assault of a TCU Police officer while resisting arrest earlier this month, a police detective said Tuesday. TCU Police Detective Kelly Ham said Connor Rhyne, who now attends Tarrant County Community College, was sent to jail April 4 after police issued a warrant for his arrest. He was released on a $10, 000 bond the next day.
It was about 11:22 p.m. on April 1 when Officer Brad Murphey, the assault victim, and Officer Richard Teakell were sent to respond to a physical confrontation among a group of Phi Delta Theta fraternity members and Rhyne, a past member of the fraternity, according to a police report.
One of the student witnesses said in the report that he was returning from a restaurant when Rhyne, who police say appeared intoxicated, approached him, broke his windshield with his fist and launched a verbal altercation.
Murphey caught Rhyne at the entrance of the Phi Kappa Sigma house after a continuous chase on foot around Worth Hills.
In his struggle to escape, Rhyne grabbed Murphey by the front of his shirt, twisted and flung him to the ground, and fled the scene, according to the report.
Ham said Rhyne declined to tell TCU Police about his involvement in the incident, saying that he had obtained an attorney.
Through his previous vehicle registration at TCU, the police were able to identify his vehicle, a black Chevrolet Avalanche, parked in the 46th lot on the east side of Tomlinson Hall, the report stated.
Murphey suffered injuries to his knees, left elbow and a glass splinter cut on his left index finger, the report stated. Ham said Murphey has fully recuperated after receiving treatment at Harris Methodist Hospital.
A student also received an injury to the mouth in an effort to restrain Rhyne, who also declined an interview with the Skiff.
Ham described the crime as an aggravated assault on a public servant, which TCU Police filed as a third-degree felony.
Jonathan Simpson, the prosecutor for the case, said the pending charge at the district attorney’s office is resisting arrest, a Class A misdemeanor, which carries a penalty of up to a year in the Tarrant County jail and up to a $4,000 fine.
Simpson declined to comment on the aggravated assault charge.
Rhyne transferred from TCU in December as a sophomore engineering major, said Alma Jackson, administrative program specialist at the registrar’s office.
Simpson said no court date has been set and declined to make further comment on the case in adherence to the professional rules of conduct for attorneys.