Thursday, October 26, 2006

Three former Texas Christian University athletes have been accused of raping a fellow student

Deanna Boyd:




Three TCU students accused of raping a fourth student in one of the men's dormitory rooms Oct. 13 laughed during the incident and later concocted a plan to minimize what they had done, one of the men told police.

The victim, 18, at first thought she had been raped by only one of the men, Virgil Allen Taylor, because she was unconscious during much of the attack, according to arrest warrant affidavits obtained Tuesday by the Star-Telegram.

All three of the suspects are former athletes at TCU.

The alleged role of the two other accused students, Shannon Behling and Lorenzo Jones, did not surface until police interviewed Taylor, who implicated Behling. An interview with Behling revealed that Jones was also involved, the affidavit stated.

"This case has shocked the conscience of all the investigators and people who have been involved in the case," said Sgt. Don Hanlon, supervisor of the Fort Worth police sex crimes unit. "In 19 years of law enforcement, there have only been a few cases that have had this deep of an effect on me, and this case is up on the top."

In their statements to police, both Taylor and Behling told investigators that the victim was unconscious during parts of the encounter. Jones refused to give police a statement.

"An unconscious person cannot consent to having sex," Hanlon said.

The three accused, who have declined jailhouse interview requests from the Star-Telegram, were formally charged Tuesday with sexual assault. Tuesday afternoon, Behling and Taylor, both 19, were released from Mansfield Jail after posting $25,000 bail each.

Jones, 20, remained in jail on the sexual assault charge and an assault/bodily injury charge from Collin County. His bail is set at $27,000.

At the time of their arrests last week, Behling was a sophomore basketball forward, Taylor a former basketball player, and Jones a nose tackle who had been cut from the football team the week before.

School officials say they anticipate that the accused, who are "temporarily separated" from TCU, will be expelled after a disciplinary hearing.

New Details Emerge In TCU Assault Case


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