Local News Articles

Sabrina Farler to Become Principal at DeKalb West School

August 28, 2014
Dwayne Page
Sabrina Farler and Mark Willoughby

Director of Schools Mark Willoughby has named Sabrina Farler to succeed Danny Parkerson as Principal at DeKalb West School.

Farler, who has been assistant principal at DeKalb West School for the last three years, will become principal upon Parkerson's retirement on September 10. She will be only the fifth principal at DWS in the 40 year history of the school. In addition to Parkerson, the others were Woodrow Frazier, Jean Hayes, and Eddie Hobson.

In an interview with WJLE Thursday, Farler said she is looking forward to this new chapter in her life. "This is an honor and privilege. I'm very excited for this opportunity to build on the successes already achieved at DeKalb West School. DeKalb County has a wonderful school system and each of the schools I have worked for in my fifteen year career have allowed me to gain strength in areas to flourish in a pre-K through 8th grade setting," she said.

Farler is beginning her 16th year as an educator. She has nine years of teaching experience and six years in administration. Farler graduated from DCHS in 1996 and furthered her education at Tennessee Tech where she received her Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education in 1999. She earned her Master's Degree in Instructional Leadership in 2003 and in 2011 received an Educational Specialist ( Ed.S degree) at Tennessee Tech.

Her teaching career began as a first grade educator at Smithville Elementary in the 1999-2000 school year. During the past fifteen years, Farler has taught at every school in DeKalb County except for DCHS. "I started teaching first grade in a team teaching situation at Smithville Elementary and when Northside opened I moved there and taught fourth grade for three years (2000-2003). While at Northside I completed my Masters Degree knowing that I wanted to move up at some point. I later asked for a transfer back to Smithville Elementary and I worked there for three years (2003-2006) teaching second grade," she said.

Farler then transferred to DeKalb West School where she taught first and second grades for two years (2006-2008) before moving to DeKalb Middle School six years ago to become Assistant Principal. "I worked with Principal Randy Jennings there for three years (2008-2011) and then when the evaluation process started, I asked for and was granted a transfer back to DeKalb West School to become Assistant Principal in 2011," she said.

Director Willoughby told WJLE that Farler's background and experience makes her well suited for the principal position at DeKalb West. "She has actually served in all schools except the high school so she knows what happens at each grade level and having served also as an assistant principal in a pre-K school through eighth grade school, Sabrina has the experience to make some good things happen. She has been successful and everywhere she has been planted, she has bloomed. I'm real proud that she applied for the job and I think she is going to do a good job being the principal," he said.

Farler and her husband Keith Farler have been married for almost twelve years. They reside in Dowelltown and have two children , Anniston Jane Farler, a fourth grader and Marshall Austin Farler, a third grader. Both children attend DeKalb West School. Keith is a co-owner of FM Construction. Farler is the daughter of Donnie and Patricia Bratcher of Smithville and she has two sisters, Karen Knowles and Tina Pack, both of Smithville. Knowles is the Assistant Principal at Smithville Elementary School.

Farler's successor as Assistant Principal has not yet been named.

Dowelltown Man Busted After Picking Up Package of Pot through Mail at Liberty Post Office

August 28, 2014
Dwayne Page
(Picture- Smithville Police K-9 Officer James Cornelius, K-9 Leo, Detective Jeremy Taylor, Sheriff Patrick Ray)

An investigation into the illegal distribution of marijuana in DeKalb County has resulted in the arrest of a 74 year old Dowelltown man who obtained a package through the mail at the Liberty Post Office containing fourteen pounds of pot.

John Harris of Cathcart Road Dowelltown is charged with Sale of a Controlled Substance (Marijuana). His bond is $10,000 and he will be in court on September 11.

He was taken into custody Wednesday by the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department.

According to Sheriff Patrick Ray, the investigation was conducted by Detectives of the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department and United States Postal Service Inspectors.

In a prepared statement, Sheriff Ray said "Sheriff’s Department Drug Detective Jeremy Taylor went to the Liberty Post Office on Wednesday and met with an Inspector from the US Postal Service. Based upon US Postal Service profiles and information that was obtained by a US Postal Service Inspector about a sealed package that had been delivered to the Liberty Post Office, Detective Taylor summoned Smithville Police Department K-9 Officer James Cornelius and his K-9 Leo to the scene. Leo alerted to Officer Cornelius that an illegal substance was in the sealed targeted package".

"After the alert from the K-9 that an illegal substance was present in the package, Officers waited for someone to come and pick up the target package from the post office. After a short wait, Harris came and picked up the package. Officers then witnessed Harris attempt to take the package and place it in his personal vehicle. Officer’s then raided Harris and seized the targeted package. Harris gave permission for Officers to look inside of the package and found were approximately 14 pounds of Marijuana in 18 individual bags".

According to Sheriff Ray, “this marijuana is not the kind we regularly see here. These bags of marijuana were packaged in Ziploc bags and then were vacuumed packed. This was to hide the distinct smell that marijuana gives off. The bags weighed anywhere from 10 ounces to just over a pound. Written on each of the bags were different strains of marijuana. Purple Diesel, Blue Dream and Buddha Cheese were just a few of the strains listed. Street value for the marijuana is anywhere from $375 to $454 an ounce or $5,712.00 to $7,264 a pound.”

Detective Taylor seized cash from Harris and also his 2009 Dodge Avenger car.

(Picture- Smithville Police K-9 Officer James Cornelius, K-9 Leo, Detective Jeremy Taylor, Sheriff Patrick Ray)

Long Career of Road Supervisor Kenny Edge Coming to a Close

August 27, 2014
Dwayne Page
Kenny Edge

After working for the people of DeKalb County as their Road Supervisor for 24 years, Kenny Edge will be stepping down when his term expires August 31.

The six term incumbent, who chose not to seek re-election this year, will be succeeded Monday, September 1 by Wallace Butch Agee who won the general election earlier this month. " I had a heart attack the year before last and had cancer took out of my jaw in December. I had thirty six treatments in January, February, and March so I think it's time to quit," said Edge during Monday night's county commission meeting.

Edge announced in January that he would not run again. WJLE interviewed him at that time. The following is the WJLE news story from that interview which was broadcast and appeared on our website almost eight months ago:

"They (supporters) beg me every day to run again. It's not that I don't love them and don't want to do the work. It's just I'm not as young as I used to be. I've enjoyed working for them (people of the county). I'm still their friend. I just feel like this is a time in my life that I need to retire and do the things I want to do," said Edge.

Edge was first elected Road Supervisor in 1990 and he was re-elected in 1994, 1998, 2002, 2006, and 2010. Prior to 1990, Edge served the county in other capacities. "I've got 43 years in working for DeKalb County and I've enjoyed every bit of it. (Then County Judge) Billy J. LaFever hired me in 1971 when the new courthouse and new school houses were being built. I did the maintenance and electrical work. He wanted me to do all the mechanical work so I worked for the county as well as the school system together up until 1990 when I ran for this office," he said.

In spite of tight budgets, Edge said he has been able to manage his resources over the years to maintain as many roads and bridges as possible. "The roads in DeKalb County are better than they have ever been. Almost all roads are either paved or oiled and chipped but there are certain roads you can't spend that kind of money to upgrade, knowing when the first flood comes it is going to destroy it. But basically all of the roads are in good shape," said Edge.

"The bridges are basically in real good shape. Since I've been in office, I don't know how many federal bridge programs I've participated in. The last big one I built was on Smith Fork. I believe it was a $1.1 million project. We've built bridges across the county including several under the hill because most of the water problems are under the hill," he said.

Edge said he appreciates the support he has received from county mayors and county commissions over the years in helping the road department fund certain projects. " They have been good to work with me. They bought me a new wheel loader for the crusher and a new road grader in 1995. I also borrowed a million dollars and paved forty miles of road across this county. It took me ten years at $100,000 a month to pay it back but I've paid it all back," he said.

Asked if he had any regrets , Edge said he wishes he could have had the money to hot mix more roads. "Everybody loves hot mix and I do too. I'd like to have done more asphalt work instead of oil and chipping. I'd hot mix every road in this county if I had the money to do it. The average life of a good paved road is twenty years before you need to put a top on it. The average life of an oil and chipped road is about eight years. We (road department) can oil and chip a road, but we can't hot mix it because we have to contract it out. We don't have the equipment. Right now it costs right around $100,000 to pave a road twenty feet wide, two and a half inches deep, a mile long," said Edge.

"My total budget (revenues) is less than two million dollars. I carry over about a half a million dollars every year (fund balance) and budget it. I'll average $120,000 to $130,000 of new money (revenue) each month. I get it monthly. But if you bought $130,000 worth of hot mix each month then you wouldn't have enough to pay your hands, buy fuel, or do anything. You've got to keep your operation going," said Edge.

By saving where he could, Edge said he has been able to hot mix a few more miles of roads while meeting other needs of the department. "You've got to save as much as you can during the year so that maybe you can hot mix five or six miles of road. Sometimes you have to do that over a two year period. It just depends on what breakdowns you have or what equipment you need to buy. The last two new dump trucks I bought cost $121,000 each. Tires are also expensive. It's hard to operate on what money we get especially with the economy like it is," he said.

For the 2014-15 fiscal year, the DeKalb County Road Department is budgeted to receive almost two million dollars in revenues, including over $1.4 million from its largest source, state gas tax revenues and more than $400,000 from the state aid program. The county budgets three cents of the property tax rate or $128,860 along with a mineral severance tax of $15,474. The department's fund balance (carry over from last year) was more than $378,000. Total appropriations for this budget year are projected to be $2.1 million.

Edge still makes use of the county rock crusher but it's mostly used on a seasonal basis now with a smaller staff to help man the department. "The rock crusher is in excellent shape. We use it but I don't run it 100% of the time because my work force has gone from twenty five to fifteen employees. They crush in the fall and winter but as soon as the grass gets up, I'll have them go to mowing," he said.

Like all public officials, Edge has his critics but he believes most people appreciates the job he has done. "I try to help everybody. I try to listen to them and try to do everything they ask me to do. I realize it's their highway department. Anybody who calls here and they need a tile put in, if they're building a house, I'll put them a tile in and fix them a driveway. I do it for everybody. It don't matter who they are or where they live in the county. I gravel every road to every cemetery. I always have. I fix everybody an entrance off a county road anywhere they want to" Edge continued.

In recent years, state auditors have noted findings in yearly audit reports concerning such practices by the county road department but Edge defends his work for the public. "I get wrote up saying you can't do that. It's frustrating how that the state has such a problem with me putting gravel or a tile in a driveway, but sees nothing wrong with the state putting down hot mix and installing guardrails to a dead end on private property in the midst of a cedar thicket on the side of a hill along side a state highway (referring to property at the foot of Snow Hill on Highway 70). I wish they would operate under the same law they want me to," he said.

Edge said he is thankful to the people of DeKalb County for supporting him all these years. "I want to thank all the people of this county for their trust in me and for voting for me. I love them all and I'll still help them anyway I can," he said.

As for his retirement, Edge said he has no particular plans. "I've got a farm I can play around on and do like some of the rest of them, run out here to Hardees every now and then and get me some coffee and a ham and biscuit," concluded Edge.

County Clerk Office to be Closed Friday through Labor Day

August 27, 2014
Dwayne Page
Mike Clayborn

The County Clerk office will be closed Friday, August 29 through Labor Day, Monday September 1. The office will reopen on Tuesday, September 2.

County Clerk Mike Clayborn said since an audit is planned for Friday, no more cash transactions can be received through the office after Thursday, August 28. "Thursday will be our final day to receipt money. We will be closed on Friday to do our final state audit and won't reopen again until Tuesday, September 2. If you are in need of renewals or title work please try to come in on Thursday so we can take care of that for you," he said.

Clayborn is leaving office this week, completing twelve years and three terms. He addressed the county commission Monday night, thanking them and the public for their support. "I want to thank you (public)for the years that you've given me to be able to serve you. I'm thankful to the good Lord for the health and strength to be able to do it. I feel like we've come a long way. When I first started we wore out a lot of pens and pencils. Now we can get your information (pull a record) in just a few seconds. The county complex has been a great asset to our senior citizens and young mothers who have kids in car seats. They come through there (drive through window) and we can do their work for them. We can now print a title where used to you had to go out of the county to do that. I counted it up one time and there's about seventeen different things that we do out of that office (county clerk). A lot of people say all you do is sell car tags. They need to come in there and look. These girls (deputy clerks) do a lot. I want to say this about the ladies that work for me and work for you. You could look anywhere you wanted to look and you would not find three better. They know what they're doing. They know what the law is and if they don't know something they do not care to get on the telephone and find out what's going to be the best for you. I appreciate everything that people have done for me. When I first came into office I had some hard times in my life and people stuck with me. I could never say thank you enough. I do appreciate each and every one of you from the very depths of my heart. Thank you very much," said Clayborn.

His successor, James L. "Jimmy" Poss has already been sworn in and takes over September 1. Again, the office will be closed Monday for Labor Day.

Michigan Truck Driver Injured in Early Morning Wreck

August 26, 2014
Dwayne Page
Photo by Tim Pyles of Tim's Truck Service & Towing
Photo by Tim's Truck Service & Towing

A Michigan truck driver received minor injuries early Tuesday morning after his tractor trailer truck went off the road on Highway 56 at Center Hill Nursery.

Trooper Brandon Jackson of the Tennessee Highway Patrol told WJLE that 42 year old Darron Fleming was enroute from Columbus, Ohio to Morrison, Tennessee hauling brake parts when the passenger side tires went off the highway, causing the truck to lose control. The mishap occurred around 1:13 a.m.

According to Trooper Jackson, the truck went off the highway and down an embankment before flipping over on its side and sliding some fifty yards. The rig remained intact as it came to rest about 100 yards off the highway on the property of the nursery.

Fleming was taken by DeKalb EMS to DeKalb Community Hospital where he was treated for lacerations to his arms and head.

County Moves Forward with Plans for Solid Waste Transfer Station (View Video Here)

August 26, 2014
Dwayne Page

Household garbage from DeKalb County will be hauled to the Smith County landfill for disposal after the solid waste transfer station is up and running.a

The county commission Monday night voted to enter into a five year contract with the neighboring county who will dispose of DeKalb County's solid waste at the rate of $29.00 a ton. "We have negotiated and gotten bids from two or three landfills for the disposal and transfer of the household garbage that would come to the transfer station, be loaded on a truck, and then hauled away," said County Mayor Mike Foster during Monday night's county commission meeting.

The commission also awarded a bid to Elk Mountain Construction of Cookeville to build the transfer station, which will be located in the Smithville Industrial Park on Highway 70 east behind Tenneco Automotive. Elk Mountain's base bid was $1,308,092 with a deductive alternate of $425,077 from the base bid for road work into the proposed facility.

Foster said the transfer station operation is expected to be less expensive than starting up and maintaining another new Class I landfill. "Right now we're taking about 14,000 tons of garbage a year into the landfill. While we're closing that (existing) landfill, we can create a class III/IV landfill to take in construction material, household furniture, and other non-household garbage and cut that (intake into the landfill) at least by 30% or maybe down to 10,000 tons a year," he said.

"The good part about this agreement with Smith County is that it's for five years and they will take our garbage for $29.00 a ton. It currently costs us at least $35.00 a ton to dispose of it (household garbage) in our own facility (landfill). The landfill we're in now costs about $4,000,000 to build. It has lasted twelve years. Now we've got to do post-closure on it which means you have to encapsulate it in a 60 mil plastic membrane and then cover it with three or four feet of dirt. You're then talking about probably another million and a half dollars to close that (landfill). This way (transfer station) you don't have to haul leachate and you don't have to do post-closure on it and guarantee that post-closure by monitoring it for thirty years after closure. The environmental liability is extremely dangerous for the county. That is the reason primarily that everybody thinks this (transfer station) is the thing to do," said Foster.

While the county obtained bids for the disposal of its solid waste, Foster said it was not required to do so. "The low bidder on our negotiation was Smith County, which is good because it's one of the closer ones to us. County Attorney Hilton (Conger) has looked over this (contract) and we have a letter from him that basically says he has reviewed the contract between DeKalb and Smith County for disposal of non-hazardous waste. TCA 519 106 & 107 specifically authorizes these types of agreements between local governments. TCA 12-9-108 also provides for inter-local agreements between municipalities. Based on these statutes as well as a 1979 private act creating a purchasing law for DeKalb County, it's his (Conger's) opinion that the county is not required to advertise for competitive bids for these types of services. I (Conger) have consulted with CTAS (County Technical Advisory Service) and their attorney concurs with this opinion," he said.

The county still has to find some way it getting the garbage to Smith County. "We still have to contract with somebody which will have to be bid to haul that garbage to them (Smith County) or haul it ourselves. I don't think we want to get too much into that. Some of the garbage like the 40 yard compaction units maybe at Alexandria and some of those, where you could transport maybe fifteen tons at a time or twenty tons, we could probably load on our truck and haul to Smith County quicker than we could actually haul it here (to Smithville). We would actually save money doing that." said Foster.

The Smithville Industrial Board recently deeded the land for the solid waste transfer station to the City of Smithville, who in turn, deeded it to the county. The work under the contract will include the construction of a 5,400 square foot pre-engineered metal building as a solid waste transfer station including a scale house building and office building; construction of an access road with erosion control measures; stripping of 8,900 cubic yard top soil; 7,500 cubic yard site excavation; 6,000 cubic yard borrow material; 6,500 tons of mineral aggregate base stone; and 3,175 tons of hot mix.

With the help of Road Supervisor Kenny Edge and his department, the county has done much of its own work building an access road extending from the Industrial Park past Tenneco Automotive into the transfer station, a move which is expected to save the county money.

As WJLE reported earlier this month, the county received three bids from companies interested in building the transfer station.

County Mayor Foster and members of the purchasing committee met Tuesday morning, August 5 for a bid opening with Ronnie Reece of Professional Engineering Services from Sparta, who has been consulting local officials on the project.

The purchasing committee voted to award the contract to the company determined to have the best bid after the three proposals were given a more in depth review to make sure they met all the bid specifications as advertised.

At the time it appeared that Johnson Builders of Doyle had the lowest bid. But Foster said Monday night during the county commission meeting that it turns out Elk Mountain's bid was better. "The group that we thought actually had the low bid, when the engineer went back and re-did their math, the second group (Elk Mountain) was actually lower than the one we thought was. The (Elk Mountain) contract was actually about $860,000 (after deducts) for the transfer station, cutting the road into (the facility), and getting part of the gravel on it. Road Supervisor Edge has helped do part of that so that will cut (costs) some more. We've hired a guy to help too trying to get ahead. The city and county are going to try and go together to get an industrial improvement grant to do the black topping, which if we can do that would save us about $280,000. We've already talked with TDOT and they have said that because we are already at this point and that it serves the city industrial development board's land, they feel there is a good chance we might be about to do this (get the grant)," said Foster.

Now that the bid has been awarded, the contractor has 150 days to complete the project. Foster said he is hopeful that the transfer station is operational by December.

Meanwhile, the existing Class I landfill, located off Billings Road in the eastern portion of the county, will soon be full. "According to the engineering estimates, we probably have nine months left on it (existing landfill). But we'll still put some stuff in there (existing landfill) until we fill it. Then we'll do a Class III/IV cell for construction material," Foster said.

Portion of County Complex to be Renamed Honoring Mike Foster

August 26, 2014
Dwayne Page
Mike Foster
Jimmy Poss, David McDowell, Mike Foster, Marshall Ferrell, and Jerry Scott

A portion of the County Complex will soon bear the name of County Mayor Mike Foster.

During Monday night's monthly meeting, the county commission voted to name the north end of the building which houses the exercise room, game room, gym and theater the "Mike Foster Multi-Purpose Center".

The motion, made by sixth district commissioner Marshall Ferrell, was adopted unanimously.

Ferrell said Foster is due much of the credit for the county acquiring the building and turning it into the facility it is today. "The new county complex would not exist if it were not for the efforts of the commission and Mike Foster. Mayor Foster's experience in building was a great asset. He worked endless hours to see the project was completed properly. Therefore, I would like to make a motion to name the north end of the complex that houses the exercise room, game room, gym, and theater, the "Mike Foster Multi-Purpose Center". I would also like to add to that motion that the appropriate signs to match the signs above the other entrances be in place," said Ferrell.

Prior to the vote, Seventh District member Larry Summers, who serves as Chairman Pro Temp of the County Commission, praised Foster for his twelve years of service and leadership. Summers gave Foster credit for many endeavors over the years including the county complex project. "The state said we needed to have more office space in the courthouse. He (Foster) brought the idea (purchasing the building) to the county commission. We now have a facility that is second to none. You show me a small county with 18,000 to 20,000 people that has something to be proud of as much as that," said Summers.

After the vote renaming the complex, Summers presented an award on behalf of the county commission to an emotional Foster. "Presented to Mike Foster, DeKalb County Executive 2002-2014 in appreciation of twelve years loyal service from our fellow commissioners, David McDowell, Bobby Joines, Jimmy Poss, Mason Carter, Elmer Ellis, John Green, Jerry Adcock, Jerry Scott, Rick Cantrell, Jack Barton, Marshall Ferrell, Bradley Hendrix, Jeff Barnes, Wayne Cantrell, and Larry Summers."

Foster then presented plaques to the following outgoing members of the commission who will be leaving when their terms expire this week: Jimmy Poss of the seventh district for 16 years; David McDowell of the fourth district for 4 years; Jerry Scott of the third district for 24 years; and Marshall Ferrell of the sixth district for 12 years. Bobby Joines and Rick Cantrell were not present but plaques are also available for them. Joines has served 12 years on the county commission from the second district and Cantrell is completing John Green's unexpired term from the fifth district. Cantrell has also been a member of the planning commission for 17 years and currently serves as chairman of the planning commission.

In addition to Foster, members of the commission thanked County Clerk Mike Clayborn and Road Supervisor Kenny Edge for their years of service. Clayborn is completing twelve years and Edge is leaving after six terms and 24 years.

Newly Elected Officials Sworn into Office (VIEW VIDEO HERE)

August 26, 2014
Dwayne Page
Former Chancellor Vernon Neal and General Sessions Judge Bratten Cook II
Newly Elected County Officials
New County Commission
New Members of School Board
New Constables Travis Bryant and Chad Curtis
Sixth District County Commissioner Jeff Barnes Sworn in by County Mayor Mike Foster

Although their terms of office don't officially begin until September 1, newly elected county officials including county commissioners, school board members, and constables took the oath of office in a formal ceremony Monday.

The program was held at the county complex auditorium.

Former Chancellor Vernon Neal administered the oath to General Sessions/Juvenile Court Judge Bratten Cook, II. The other officials then took the oath from Judge Cook.

Members of the county commission were sworn in collectively as one group by Judge Cook. All newly elected members of the commission were present except for sixth district member Jeff Barnes, who chose to take the oath from County Mayor Mike Foster prior to the county commission meeting Monday night at the courthouse.

County Commissioners sworn in by Judge Cook were:
First District: Mason Carter and Elmer Ellis, Jr.
Second District: Joe N. Johnson and James E. Midgett
Third District: Jack E. Barton and Bradley Scott Hendrix
Fourth District: Wayne Cantrell and Jonathon Norris
Fifth District: Jerry D. Adcock and Anita Puckett
Sixth District: Betty Jean Atnip
Seventh District: Kevin Robinson and Larry Summers

Judge Cook then administered the oath to the following county officials:
County Mayor Tim Stribling
Road Supervisor Butch Agee
Trustee Sean Driver
Register of Deeds Jeff McMillen
Circuit Court Clerk Katherine Pack
County Clerk James L. Poss
Sheriff Patrick Ray

Constables Travis Bryant in the third district and Chad Curtis in the first district were sworn in to fill vacant positions. Second district constable-elect Chris Tramel was unable to attend the ceremony and will be sworn into office at a later time.

School board members Jerry Wayne Johnson in the second district, Jim Beshearse in the third district, Billy Miller in the fourth district, and Shaun Tubbs in the seventh district received their oath of office. First district school board member-elect Danny Parkerson was absent and will be sworn into office at a later time.

Judge Cook then administered the oath of office to all deputy clerks present for the ceremony.

The program opened with local boy scouts leading the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance and a prayer by Bill Robertson, pastor of the Elizabeth Chapel Baptist Church.

County Mayor Stribling offered some closing remarks at the end of the ceremony.

(TOP PHOTO: Former Chancellor Vernon Neal and General Sessions/Juvenile Court Judge Bratten Cook, II

(SECOND PHOTO FROM TOP): Seated: County Officials General Sessions Judge Bratten Cook, II, Trustee Sean Driver, Circuit Court Clerk Katherine Pack, and Register of Deeds Jeff McMillen. Standing: Sheriff Patrick Ray, Road Supervisor Butch Agee, County Clerk James L. (Jimmy) Poss, and County Mayor Tim Stribling)

(THIRD PHOTO FROM TOP: County Commissioners Seated: Jonathon Norris, Anita Puckett, Betty Jean Atnip, Jack Barton, Joe Johnson, and Wayne Cantrell. Standing: Elmer Ellis, Jr., Mason Carter, Jerry Adcock, Kevin Robinson, Bradley Hendrix, Larry Summer, and Jimmy Midgett

(FOURTH PHOTO FROM TOP): School Board members Shaun Tubbs, Billy Miller, Jim Beshearse, and Jerry Wayne Johnsoin

(FIFTH PHOTO FROM TOP): Constables Travis Bryant and Chad Curtis

(BOTTOM PHOTO): County Mayor Mike Foster and Sixth District County Commissioner Jeff Barnes

Man Files False Report in Rock Throwing Case

August 26, 2014
Dwayne Page
Brian Kane Pack

A Smithville man has been charged with filing a false report and reckless endangerment for allegedly throwing rocks at his family's home and vehicles as well as law enforcement officers and then trying to blame someone else for it.

24 year old Brian Kane Pack of Lakeview Circle, Smithville is under a $12,000 bond and he will be in court August 28.

Sheriff Patrick Ray said that on Thursday, August 21 a detective and other members of the sheriff's department along with TWRA officers were called to a residence on Lakeview Circle to investigate who had been throwing rocks at the home and several vehicles there. According to Sheriff Ray, this was not the first complaint. Officers had been called to the same residence several times before and on a couple of occasions, someone had thrown good sized rocks at the officers while they there on the scene at night, hitting a patrol car and another vehicle used in undercover operations. During the investigation, Pack came forward to report that he knew who was throwing the rocks and gave the officers the names of the suspects. The investigation later revealed that Pack was the only person responsible. When confronted by a detective, Pack allegedly admitted to throwing the rocks and giving officers false information.

Due to his actions, Sheriff Ray said that Pack placed the officers in danger of bodily injury by causing them to go into the woods at night on steep terrain, looking for someone that Pack knew was not there.

44 year old Donna Sue Blankenship of McMinnville is charged with public intoxication. Her bond is $1,500. Sheriff Ray said that on Monday, August 18 a deputy was dispatched to the Short Mountain Highway area in reference to a suspicious woman who was reported to have been going door to door and walking through people's yards. The officer found the woman, Blankenship on Banks Pisgah Road. Residents in that neighborhood said they did not know Blankenship. She had slurred speech and was unsteady on her feet. Blankenship said she had been taking Xanax. She was placed under arrest for public intoxication.

34 year old Heather Starr Trapp of South College Street, Smithville is charged with driving on a suspended license and evading arrest. Her bond is $7,500. The offenses occurred on June 4 but the warrants were not served on her until August 20. After her arrest on June 4, Trapp was taken to Warren County where authorities had active warrants on her for separate offenses. In the June 4 incident locally, Sheriff Ray said that a deputy was called to check out a complaint of a possible drunk driver on Highway 56 south. The officer spotted the vehicle on Whorton Springs Road and observed it traveling on the wrong side of the road. He attempted to conduct a traffic stop using lights and sirens but the car continued on down the road for another one to two miles before finally coming to a stop. The driver was found to be Trapp. A computer check revealed her license were suspended for failure to satisfy a citation in 2011.

54 year old Lonnie Ray Dyer of Short Mountain Highway, Smithville is charged with two counts of assault. His bond is $5,000 and he will be in court August 28. Sheriff Ray said that on Tuesday, August 19 Dyer, a prisoner in DeKalb County Jail, allegedly assaulted two other inmates in the cell with him by hitting them in the back of the head with his fists.

31 year old Anthony Robert Hawkins of Cecil Hale Road, Smithville is charged with driving under the influence. He was further issued a citation for driving on roadways laned for travel. His bond is $1,500 and he will be in court September 11. Sheriff Ray said that on Saturday, August 23 a deputy was on Highway 70 when he spotted a silver Chevrolet Silverado leave its lane of travel several times. The officer stopped the truck and spoke with the driver, Hawkins who had a strong odor of alcohol on his person. Hawkins said that he had been drinking and had taken prescription medication. Hawkins submitted to and performed poorly on field sobriety tasks. He was placed under arrest.

Three Injured in Sunday Wreck

August 25, 2014
Dwayne Page
Three Injured in Sunday Wreck

Three people were transported to the emergency room of DeKalb Community Hospital Sunday after a two car wreck at West Bryant Street and Fisher Avenue.

Captain Steven Leffew of the Smithville Police Department told WJLE that 64 year old Patricia Luna of Sparta, driving a 2001 Buick Le Sabre, attempted to make a right turn onto Bryant Street from Fisher Avenue when she pulled into the path of a 2002 Toyota Camry, driven by 64 year old Glenda Turner of Smithville who was traveling east on Bryant Street.

Luna, Turner and a passenger with Luna, 83 year old Geneva Looney of Smithville were taken to the hospital by DeKalb EMS. The Smithville Volunteer Fire Department was also on the scene to provide assistance.

Captain Leffew said Luna was cited for failure to yield.


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WJLE Radio

2606 McMinnville Hwy
Smithville, TN 37166

Phone: 615 597-4265
FAX: 615 597-6025
Email: wjle@dtccom.net

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