Tarrant City Council member Tommy Bryant was arrested Monday after he reportedly attacked Mayor Wayman Newton, according to the mayor.
The incident happened following Monday’s City Council meeting.
Newton said he went to speak to Police Chief Wendell Major when he said Bryant accosted him.
“He started attacking me and verbally assaulting me,’’ Newton said. “We exchanged words and and then he came at me. He sucker-punched me.”
Newton said he was punched in the face. “It’s sore,’’ he said.
Efforts to reach Major were not immediately successful.
Bryant was booked into the Tarrant City Jail. Newton, reportedly on a charge of harassment. Newton said he believes the charge should be assault. “And it wasn’t a simple assault,’’ he said.
Asked what they exchanged words about, Newton said it happened so fast he didn’t immediately recall. “He’d (Bryant) been on one all night,’’ he said. “He’d made veiled threats against me,’’ prior to the assault.
Bryant and Newton have been at odds since Newton was elected as the city’s first Black mayor.
In August 2021, Newton was arrested after Bryant signed a misdemeanor warrant against him for harassing communications.
In that 2021 case, Bryant accused Newton of shouting an expletive – “F#*&”- several times, and then, “F#*& your wife” multiple times and finally saying, “I’m going to F#*& your wife” several times as well as some other sexually explicit comments.
“Tommy Bryant is an unapologetic bigot who is a cancer to the City of Tarrant and my administration,’’ Newton said at the time. “I am confident that the baseless harassment claim he has filed against me will be thrown out.”
Since he was sworn in, Newton has been met with resistance from a majority of the city council and some department heads.
On his first day in office, Newton had a confrontation with the now-retired police chief, Dennis Reno, over his request for Tarrant to hire more Black police officers.
Reno filed a misdemeanor assault charge against Newton, claiming he slammed his arm in the door. Newton later released video of Reno leaving the meeting, which he said disproved Reno’s claim of an assault.
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.