Assault charge dropped against former student

Assault charge dropped against former student

Read past coverage of the case from Skiff archives

Although his sexual assault charge was dropped, a former football player remains separated from campus, a university official said.

Don Mills, vice chancellor for student affairs, said he is aware the charge has been dropped against Lorenzo Labell Jones, 21, but nothing has changed concerning his status with the university.

Jones was one of three former TCU athletes accused of sexually assaulting a freshman female student in 2006, according to court records.

“We hold students to a higher standard than the criminal system does,” Mills said. “We have our own code of conduct, and therefore nothing has changed.”

Jones’ aggravated sexual assault by threat charge was dropped by the Tarrant County District Attorney’s office Friday because there was insufficient evidence, according to Tarrant County court records.

Jones bonded out at 3:28 p.m. Monday for a previous bail jumping charge, and he has to report to the Community Supervision and Corrections Department for probation on a monthly basis for an unknown length of time, a Tarrant County jail officer said.

Jones’ defense attorney, Marcus Norman, said the charge could come back and he could be indicted if there is evidence against him. However, at this point it is not likely, Norman said.

Norman said he has suggested Jones put this situation behind him and move on with his life.

Jones will have to report for probation, but Norman said, “Within the near future, he should be done with everything.”

Norman said the way the university and its football program handled the issue was disheartening.

“The TCU football program should be embarrassed by the way it treats its players,” Norman said. “They suspended him without due process, and they ran from this guy like the plague when this all surfaced.”

Jones was removed from the football team Oct. 13, 2006, the same day as the assault, because he stopped showing up to practice after TCU’s loss to Utah.

In all, Jones spent about 280 days in jail for the sexual assault charge and a bail jumping charge, Norman said.

Former basketball players Virgil Allen Taylor, 21, and Shannon Monroe Behling, 20, were both indicted on aggravated sexual assault by threat charges in January and October, respectively, according to indictments filed in district courts.

A freshman student had told police Taylor sexually assaulted her in his room in Moncrief Hall after he gave her a sports drink that caused her to pass out, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

Taylor later implicated Behling and Jones, according to the affidavit. Taylor and Behling are not currently in Tarrant County jail, according to court records.