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One Injured in Three Vehicle Crash Near Walmart Saturday Night

December 6, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
2016 Nissan Altima driven by Kendra Guinn
1997 Toyota pickup truck driven by Jarred Dawson struck by 2006 Chrysler driven by David F. Lanier

Four people were involved in a three vehicle crash Saturday night on Broad Street at the traffic light entrance to Walmart.

Smithville Police report that 45 year old Kendra Guinn of Smithville, driving a 2016 Nissan Altima was west on Broad Street but turning left into the Walmart entrance when she allegedly crossed the path of an eastbound 2006 Chrysler driven by 32 year old David F. Lanier of Pea Ridge Road, Liberty. According to witnesses, Lanier tried to avoid a collision but clipped the front of Guinn’s car and then struck a 1997 Toyota pickup truck , driven by 29 year old Jarred C. Dawson of Smithville who was at the Walmart entrance waiting to turn right at the traffic light onto Broad Street. Dawson’s truck was hit on the driver’s side. Dawson was taken by DeKalb EMS to Saint Thomas DeKalb Hospital where he was treated for non-critical injuries. Neither Guinn nor her passenger, a 10 year old girl were hurt. Lanier was also uninjured.

According to the police report, Guinn said she did not see a vehicle approaching her when she tried to turn left into Walmart and did not see any vehicle until the collision.

Members of the Smithville Volunteer Fire Department rendered assistance at the scene.

Undercover Drug Probe by Smithville Police Nets Grand Jury Indictments

December 6, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Gary Christopher Ponder
Robert Lee Nichols
Donald Gene Rigsby
Aron Dwayne Ponder
Mark Eugene West
Nathan Bradley McMinn.

An undercover drug investigation by the Smithville Police Department has resulted in grand jury sealed indictments against eight persons.

(CLICK LINK BELOW TO VIEW MUG SHOTS OF PERSONS RECENTLY BOOKED AT THE DEKALB COUNTY JAIL)

Seagate Crystal Reports - REPOR.pdf (3.07 MB)

Smithville Police Chief Mark Collins told WJLE that six of the defendants have been arrested and will appear for arraignment Monday, December 12 in DeKalb County Criminal Court including 29 year old Gary Christopher Ponder of Old Mill Hill Road, Dowelltown; 37 year old Robert Lee Nichols of Hodges Road, Smithville; 55 year old Donald Gene Rigsby of Bethel Road, Smithville; Aron Dwayne Ponder; Mark Eugene West; and Nathan Bradley McMinn. Two vehicles were also seized by the police department as a result of the investigation.

“On January 14, the Police Department launched an undercover drug investigation based on several complaints of illegal drugs being sold throughout the city. Using a confidential informant we were able to make several buys throughout the city. The cases were presented to the DeKalb County Grand Jury on Monday, November 28 and sealed indictments were returned against these individuals and two others who have not yet been picked up,” Chief Collins told WJLE.

The indictment against Nathan Bradley McMinn and a co-defendant states that “On January 29, they did unlawfully and knowingly sell and or deliver a controlled substance, to wit: Hydrocodone, a schedule II controlled substance.

The indictment against Nichols and a co-defendant alleges that on February 22, they did unlawfully and knowingly sell and or deliver a controlled substance, to wit: Methamphetamine, a schedule II controlled substance, in an amount under 0.5 grams.

Aron Dwayne Ponder and Gary Christopher Ponder are co-indicted alleging that on January 29 they did unlawfully and knowingly sell and or deliver a controlled substance, to wit: Morphine, a Schedule II controlled substance

Aron Dwayne Ponder is indicted on a separate count alleging that on January 21 he did unlawfully and knowingly sell and or deliver a controlled substance, to wit: Morphine, a Schedule II controlled substance.

The indictment against Mark Eugene West alleges that on February 1, he did unlawfully and knowingly sell and or deliver a controlled substance, to wit: Buprenorphine, a Schedule III control substance

Donald Gene Rigsby’s indictment alleges that on January 14, he did unlawfully and knowingly sell and or deliver a controlled substance, to wit: Buprenorphine, a Schedule III controlled substance.

DCHS Recognizes Students Excelling in ACT Readiness

December 6, 2016
by: 
Jenny Norris
Members of the 21+ Club (WJLE Photo)
Members of the 30+ Club (WJLE Photo)

DeKalb County High School is working to recognize students making strides on the ACT test. As part of the TN Department of Education’s Tennessee Succeeds initiative, the state is working to increase the state average for student ACT scores to 21 by the year 2020. The ACT serves as a gateway to college and career readiness in Tennessee, determining students’ eligibility for the HOPE scholarship, requirements for postsecondary remedial or developmental coursework, and sometimes entry-level salary. At DCHS, a 21+ Club has been created for students that have met the ACT readiness benchmark. This club currently contains 71 students. A 30+ club includes 4 students that have scored a 30 or above on their ACT. "We are very proud of these students and want them to have the recognition for which they have worked," said Jenny Norris, DCHS Assistant Principal.

Members of the 21+ Club are as follows:
Eleanor Atnip, Myranda Bailiff, Alexis Bates, Kayla Belk, Madison Bouldin, Rebekah Brandt, Meghan Brandt, Kaylee Braswell, Alec Bryan, Madison Butler, Kaitlyn Cantrell, Madison Cantrell, Kayley Caplinger, Makayla Cornett-Bain, Katlyn Cox, Tyree Cripps, Callie Cripps, Chloe Cripps, Caelin Crips, Eli Cross, Lance Davis, Miranda Davis, Karlee Dickens, Lynzi Downey, Eli England, Abby Evans, Neely Evans, Malone Fletcher, Peyton Frazier, Rachel Fuson, Breanna Gibson, Brady Gill, Willow Godowns, Griffin Goldstein, Lucas Green, Gentry Harpole, Maegan Harris, Clayton Hoyle, Steven Jennings, Karen Johnson, Sahara Lafever, Caitlyn Lawrence, Allison Maynard, Kelsie Merriman, Bradley Miller, Braya Murphy, Katherine Parsley, Kristen Parsley, Zachary Parsley, Mackenzie Partridge, Ami Patel, Rosa Payne, Seth Pedigo, Jason Perricone, Kallie Petty, Baylee Phillips, Bailey Redmon, Megan Redmon, Julianne Richardson, Hunter Robinson, Allison Rogers, Alexis Roller, Jacob Self, Rebecca Snyder, Taylor Spare, Alex Steel, Jayrah Trapp, Jordan Vallem, Emily Wallace, Michael Warren, Tori Young

30+ Club – Madison Cantrell, Eli Cross, Baylee Phillips, Hunter Robinson

Teen Injured in Saturday Night Wreck

December 6, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Teen Injured in Saturday Night Wreck
Pickup Truck Crash on Allen Ferry Road Injures Teen

A teenager was injured in a pickup truck crash Saturday night on Highway 83 (Allen Ferry Road) near the Little League ball park.

Trooper Bobby Johnson of the Tennessee Highway Patrol said the 17 year old boy was traveling west in a 1995 Chevy S-10 when the truck ran off the right side of the roadway. After the driver overcorrected the truck came back across and went off the left side of the road striking a ditch and culvert. The teen, whose name was not released because he is a juvenile, was taken by DeKalb EMS to Saint Thomas DeKalb Hospital. He reportedly suffered a laceration to the head.

Trooper Johnson wishes to thank each member of the Smithville Fire Department for offering their assistance until the scene was cleared.

Names of Fire Victims released by Smithville Police

December 5, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Crystal Fults and Jeremy Shelton

Smithville Police have now released the names of the victims in Sunday’s mobile home fire on South Mountain Street.

Dead are 27 year old Jeremy Shelton, 36 year old Crystal Fults, and 4 year old Caylix Johnson. Two others, 26 year old Heather Standridge and 23 month old Brantley Johnson were injured.

In a prepared news release, Police Chief Mark Collins reported that “Police responded to 1276 South Mountain Street Sunday, December 4 at 12:16 p.m. for a structure fire with people possibly still in the residence. Five people were inside thehome at the time of the fire including 27 year old Jeremy Shelton, 36 year old Crystal Fults, 26 year old Heather Standridge, and her two children 4 year old Caylix Johnson, and 23 month old Brantley Johnson".

According to Chief Collins, " Jeremy Shelton and Crystal Fults perished in the fire. The children were rescued from the fire by Smithville firefighter, Lt. John Poss and a passerby, Jerry Estes. Estes was passing the residence when he saw the trailer on fire and Heather Standridge standing outside the trailer yelling that her children were still inside. Mr. Estes then climbed through the window where the children were reported to be and rescued 23 month old Brantley Johnson. A short time later, Lt. Poss arrived on scene where he entered the structure and rescued four year old Caylix Johnson who later passed away at the hospital. Heather Standridge and 23 month old Brantley Johnson are currently in ICU at Vanderbilt".

The investigation is still underway by the Smithville Police Department, Smithville Fire Department, and the Tennessee Fire Marshall's Office. Chief Collins said the official cause of fire at this time is still undetermined.

Three dead, Two Seriously Injured in Mobile Home Fire

December 4, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page
Three dead, Two Seriously Injured in Mobile Home Fire

An investigation is underway by the Smithville Police and Fire Departments and State Fire Marshal’s Office to determine the cause of a mobile home fire Sunday which claimed the lives of three people including a man, woman, and child, and seriously injured another woman and child.

Dead are 27 year old Jeremy Shelton, 36 year old Crystal Fults, and 4 year old Caylix Johnson. Two others, 26 year old Heather Standridge and 23 month old Brantley Johnson were injured.

A passerby, Jerry Estes spotted the fire at 1276 South Mountain Street, Smithville. He also saw Standridge standing outside the trailer yelling that her children, the Johnson siblings, were still inside. 911 was alerted at 12:12 p.m. and members of the Smithville Volunteer Fire Department and Police Department were summoned along with backup from the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department.

According to Smithville Police Chief Mark Collins, Estes climbed through a window, grabbed the 23 month old child, and pulled him to safety. After firefighters arrived, Lieutenant John Poss of the Smithville Volunteer Fire Department rescued the 4 year old child. Shelton and Fults perished in the fire.

Standridge and the Johnson children were taken by DeKalb EMS to Saint Thomas DeKalb Hospital. Standridge and the 23 month old, Brantley Johnson were later transported to Vanderbilt Hospital where they remain in the Intensive Care Unit. The 4 year old child, Caylix Johnson died at the hospital in Smithville.

The mobile home was destroyed in the fire. After the blaze was out, the county’s deputy medical examiner Terry Martin was called to the scene along with the State Fire Marshal’s Office. Firefighters and others huddled near the trailer to bow their heads in prayer for the victims. Members of the American Red Cross were also on site ready to offer support to the victims’ families.

The investigation is still underway by the Smithville Police Department, Smithville Fire Department, and the Tennessee Fire Marshall's Office. Chief Collins said the official cause of fire at this time is still undetermined.

Smithville Christmas Parade Float Winners (View Videos Here)

December 4, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page

Pedigo's New and Used won 1st place at the Smithville Christmas Parade Saturday for their float entry "Radio Flyer" wagon

The Smithville Lions Club received 2nd place at the Smithville Christmas Parade for their float entry "A Christmas Story"

The Smithville First Assembly of God received 3rd place at the Smithville Christmas Parade for their float entry "God of this City"

The DeKalb Junior Pro Football Players and Cheerleaders won the "Spirit Award" at the Smithville Christmas Parade presented by the Smithville Business and Professional Women's Club

Smithville Christmas Parade Videos (VIEW ENTIRE PARADE HERE)

December 3, 2016
by: 
Dwayne Page

Spectators lined the streets Saturday eagerly awaiting the arrival of Santa in the annual Christmas Parade sponsored by the Smithville Volunteer Fire Department.

(SMITHVLLE CHRISTMAS PARADE: PART 1)

Enthusiastic kids and grownups alike enjoyed the sights and sounds of this long awaited annual event which included floats, horseback riders, horse drawn wagons, boy and girl scouts, veterans, vintage automobiles, emergency vehicles, the DCHS band, State Representative Terri Lynn Weaver and of course, Santa Claus.

Smithville Christmas Parade (Part 2)

Winning first place among the float entries was Pedigo’s New and Used” Radio Flyer wagon

Second Place went to the Smithville Lions Club’s “A Christmas Story”

The Smithville First Assembly of God received third place for their float “God of this City”.

The Spirit Award, presented by the Smithville Business and Professional Women's Club, went to the DeKalb County Junior Pro Football Players and Cheerleaders.

The Liberty Christmas Parade will be Sunday, December 4 starting at 2:00 p.m. weather permitting.

NHC Smithville Honors CNA’s of the Year

December 2, 2016
CNA’s of the Year at NHC Smithville
Maria Amaya,  NHC Smithville’s nominee for CNA of the Year for all NHC centers in the Central Region

Certified Nurse Aides (CNA) provide essential care in healthcare settings by assisting patients with activities of daily living. Nine area residents were recently recognized as CNA’s of the Year at NHC Smithville. Dekota Watson, Maria Amaya, Nicole Stanfield, Pam Sims, Darlene Donelson, Cassie Dyer, Sue Cook, Opal Parker, and Susie White, were honored at the Nashville Zoo at Grasmere with a day of fun and a banquet. They celebrated with other honored CNA’s from NHC HealthCare Centers throughout Middle Tennessee and Southern Kentucky. The keynote speaker this year was Tennessee Titan for Life and former Linebacker, Mr. Tim Shaw. Mr. Shaw, recently diagnosed with ALS, shared a wonderful message of gratitude, hope, and service with all honorees.

The honorees were evaluated on knowledge and performance of their duties, among other key factors. Mrs. Maria Amaya was further recognized as NHC Smithville’s nominee for CNA of the Year for all NHC centers in the Central Region. NHC Smithville Director of Nursing, Melinda Wilson, said, “Each of these CNA’s are hard-working, professional, compassionate, caring, honest, understanding, and highly skilled. They are a tremendous asset to NHC Smithville and we are truly fortunate to have them as valued partners.”

NHC Smithville offers inpatient and outpatient rehabilitative care and accepts Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance, workers compensation, managed care, and private funds. The inpatient healthcare center offers skilled nursing and rehabilitation services to adults of all ages on a short-term and long-term basis. NHC Smithville’s outpatient clinic offers physical, occupational, and speech therapy services to infants, children and adults of all ages. For more information about NHC Smithville, visit www.nhcsmithville.com or call (615) 597-4284.

PHOTOS (L to R (STANDING): Susie White, Clint Hall (Administrator), Melinda Wilson (Director of Nursing), Dekota Watson, Darlene Donelson, Sue Cook, Pam Sims, Opal Parker, Nicole Stanfield, and Cassie Dyer. (IN FRONT): Ryan Vaden (Administrator in Training), and Tim Shaw (Titan for Life). #2-Maria Amaya, CNA of the Year.

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