Former Olympian, Current Ohio State Asst. Gymnastics Coach Arrested After Assault


UPDATED: Thursday September 8, 2011 7:39 AM

A former Olympian and current Ohio State assistant gymnastics coach was arrested over the weekend after an alleged assault.

Police arrested Paul Hamm after they said he assaulted a taxi driver and then wrestled with a police officer late Saturday night in the 2500 block of Wexford Avenue, 10TV News reported. 

According to police, Hamm took a taxi from the Arena District to his home in Upper Arlington. The report states he fell asleep and when the driver woke him up he said he would not pay the $23 cab fare.

Abdinasir Elmi, the driver of the cab, said he was trying to help Hamm open the window when Hamm hit him.

"I was trying to help him to open the window and he said ‘(expletive) you’ and he hit me with his elbow on my mouth," said Elmi.

According to the report, after an argument, Hamm damaged a window of the cab, punched and kicked Elmi.

The driver called police and when they arrived, police said they struggled to get Hamm under control.

In video released by police, Hamm was heard talking with a police officer.

“All the sudden, looking at my wallet and I'm looking at a situation, I don't have my ID,” Hamm said.

The officer then replied, “That's cause I have it man. You gave it to me less than 5 minutes ago.”

When the officer asked Hamm how many drinks he had consumed, Hamm said he had “probably eight drinks.”

During the arrest, an officer on the scene used his police radio to call for assistance. The officers tried to gain control of Hamm. Hamm was heard on the video saying, “You guys are so funny. You guys have no idea. I'm going to kill you guys.”

Hamm is charged with assault, criminal damaging and for not paying for a service.

Hamm was a three-time Olympic medalist. He won the all-around competition at the 2004 Olympic Games. He was hired by Ohio State in the spring of 2011.

Ohio State University said it was aware of Hamm’s arrest and will allow due process and then make a determination on a course of action.

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