Local News Articles

Peanut Butter Recall Affects UCHRA Commodities

December 2, 2011
Randy Wilder, Community Outreach and Resource Development Manager

The Tennessee Department of Agriculture/ Commodity Distributions issued a statement to the Upper Cumberland Human Resource Agency (UCHRA) involving recalled Hampton Farms peanut butter. Specific lots of Hampton Farms brand peanut butter distributed to agencies and participants in the Emergency Food Assistance Program (Commodities) in Tennessee are being recalled. Hampton Farms issued a recall for the product because it was not manufactured under Good Manufacturing Practices. This peanut butter was distributed in Tennessee through USDA and the Tennessee Department of Agriculture. To date, no one has become sick or been injured because of this product.

The recalled peanut butter was distributed during the month of November 2011 and has the following identifying information: Brand name-Hampton Farms; Product-Smooth Peanut Butter; Size- 18 ounce jars; Best used by date: 10/19/2012; Production lot Number-878.

If the peanut butter received through commodities matches the information above, contact the local UCHRA DeKalb County office at (615)597-4504 for further information and instruction on discarding and replacement of the peanut butter.

If your peanut butter does not match the identifiers listed above, then there is no need to be concerned or take action.

If you need additional information, please contact Upper Cumberland Human Resource Agency’s central office at 931-528-1127 or Tennessee Department of Agriculture 615-837-5162 or Terry.Minton@tn.gov.

Undercover Drug Investigation by Smithville Police Department Results in Grand Jury Sealed Indictments

December 1, 2011
Dwayne Page
 Randy Caldwell
Ben Pascal
Teresa Beasley
Timothy Lawson
Keith Clifford Lafreniere

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

Smithville Police Chief Randy Caplinger said 41 year old Randy Caldwell, 24 year old Ben Pascal, 45 year old Teresa Beasley, and 41 year old Timothy Lawson have all been served with the indictments and will appear in criminal court for arraignment on Monday, December 12. One other person has yet to be served.

The investigations were conducted by Detectives Matt Holmes and Brandon Donnell with an informant making the drug buys. A TBI agent worked with the detectives in one case.

Caldwell is charged with two counts of sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance.

The indictments allege that on August 18 and 19, Caldwell sold and delivered Hydromorphone, a schedule II controlled substance.

Pascal is charged with sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance. He is indicted with a co-defendant for allegedly selling and delivering dilaudid, a schedule II controlled substance on August 25.

Beasley is charged with sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance. Her indictment alleges that she sold and delivered Hydromorphone, a schedule II drug on August 26. The alleged drug buy took place at City Walk Apartments.

Lawson is charged with three counts of sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance in a drug free school zone.

The indictments allege that Lawson sold and delivered morphine on July 27, August 4, and August 23. The alleged drug buys took place at the City Walk Apartments, located near Smithville Elementary School.

Meanwhile 23 year old Brandon Matthew Byford, not part of the drug investigation, has been arrested by Smithville Police for harboring a fugitive, resisting arrest, and possession of a prohibited weapon for allegedly trying to hide Lawson in his City Walk apartment.

Detectives Donnell and Holmes went to City Walk Apartment Monday, November 28 to serve the indictments on Lawson but no one came to the door, even though they saw who they thought was Lawson inside. After forcibly entering, the detectives found Lawson who was hiding in the apartment. They also arrested Byford. Police said Byford tried to resist and he had brass knuckles in his possession. Byford is under a $7,500 bond and he will be in court on December 15.

18 year old Keith Clifford Lafreniere, II was indicted Monday on a rape charge. The case was investigated by Detective Matt Holmes of the Smithville Police Department.

The indictment alleges that on May 26 Lafreniere did intentionally or knowingly engage in unlawful sexual activity with a 12 year old girl and that it was accomplished by the use of force or coercion constituting the offense of rape.

The incident allegedly occurred at a residence on West Main Street. DNA evidence was collected at the scene. Lafreniere, who was identified as a suspect, was later charged in the case. He will appear for arraignment in criminal court on Monday, December 12.

Meanwhile in other cases, 34 year old Amy Jeanette Lawson is charged with theft over $500, criminal trespassing, and a second offense of driving on a suspended license. Her bond is $17,500 and she will be in court on December 15.

A Smithville Police Officer was recently called to Food Lion. The store manager said that a customer claimed that another woman, later identified as Lawson, had come up to her in the store and began talking. Before leaving, Lawson allegedly swiped the woman's wallet, which contained up to eight hundred dollars. Lawson then left the store, got in her car, and drove away. The victim followed after Lawson and caught up with her on Dearman Street. Lawson allegedly gave back the wallet but there was no money in it. Lawson then drove to Jewel's Market, where police confronted her. While there, the officer was notified that Wal-mart called to report that Lawson had been in the store earlier that day trying to return a cell phone, when she was not supposed to be there. Lawson had previously been barred from the store. Walmart filed a criminal trespassing charge against her. Lawson was arrested and brought to the police department but while she was being held, Lawson slipped out of her handcuffs and darted out the door. Police apprehended her at North Webb and Congress Boulevard.

57 year old Terry Wayne Owens is charged with domestic assault. His bond is $3,500.

Chief Caplinger reports that police went to Owen's residence on Smith Road after someone there phoned 911 and hung up. Upon arrival, police learned from a woman there that she and Owens became involved in an argument which turned physical with him allegedly assaulting her. He was taken into custody.

27 year old Daniel Ray Wilson was cited for shoplifting on Thanksgiving Day. Wilson allegedly put several items in his pockets, totaling over $87 from Walmart trying to conceal them. He will be in court on December 11.

34 year old Eric Heflin was stopped for a traffic (light law) violation on Wednesday, November 23. He was also cited for violation of the open container law. He will be in court on January 3.

UPDATED: Fifty Six Indicted by Grand Jury

December 1, 2011
Dwayne Page

Fifty Six people were indicted by the regular term of the DeKalb County Grand Jury Monday including twelve who were named in sealed indictments. All those indicted will appear for arraignment in DeKalb County Criminal Court on Monday, December 12 at 9:00 a.m.

WJLE had originally reported on Tuesday that 40 were indicted but several names were inadvertently omitted from the list. The following is a complete list of all those indicted including those named in sealed indictments who have been served:

Andrew Anderson (sealed indictment)- Aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor, sexual exploitation of a minor

David Anderson, Travis Rich, Jessica Bogle, Amy Ford, and Tammy Jones: co-indicted on charges of Initiation of meth, manufacture of meth, promotion of meth, and criminal trespassing

Jessie Robert Adcock- Auto burglary and theft over $1,000

Shannon Anderson- Aggravated burglary and theft over $1,000

Dickie Bain- Theft under $500 (2 counts)

Dickie Ray Bain and Mark Goodson- Theft over $1,000 and false report

Teresa Beasley (sealed indictment)- Sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance

Steven Darrell Bly- Aggravated burglary and violation of an order of protection

William H. Bogle, Jr.- Harassment ( 2 counts)

Kevin Brooks- Theft over $1,000

Randy Caldwell (sealed indictment)- Sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance (2 counts)

Chasity Carter- Theft under $500

Anna Faye Colburn- possession of a schedule II, III, and VI controlled substance, possession of paraphernalia, driving under the influence, and violation of the implied consent law.

Terry Collins- Theft over $1,000

Tammy Currie- Aggravated burglary (4 charges) and theft under $500 (4 charges)

William Corey Dickens- Theft over $1,000 (2 counts)

David Dixon- Possession of a schedule IV controlled substance and violation of an order of protection.

Jessica Dyal- Theft under $500

Amy P. Ford- Possession of a schedule III controlled substance

James Goodman- Manufacture Methamphetamine

Tiffany Greer- Aggravated burglary and theft over $1,000

Shaun Hill- Aggravated burglary (3 charges) and theft over $1,000 (3 charges); and possession of a schedule II controlled substance

Jill Marie Jones- Prescription Fraud (2 counts)

Terry Wayne Knowles- Driving on a suspended license

Keith Clifford Lafreniere,II- Rape

Roxanna Landis- Possession of paraphernalia and public intoxication

Timothy Lawson (sealed indictment)- Sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance in a drug free school zone (3 counts)

Robert Justin Luna- Initiation of a process to manufacture methamphetamine

Wanda Carol Mathis- Sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance

Daniel Lee Mayo- Possession of a schedule II controlled substance for resale, driving under the influence, and violation of the implied consent law.

Coty McCormick-aggravated assault

Kenneth Moore-Rape of a child

Melinda Murphy- Theft under $500 and fraudulent use of a credit card

Steven Osment (sealed indictment)- Hindering a secured creditor

Ben Pascal (sealed indictment)- Sale and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance

Lisa Porterfield-Hindering a secured creditor

Richard Raby- Burglary (2 charges), theft over $1,000

Joseph E. Selby- Sexual battery

Danny Lee Smithson- Driving on a revoked license (4th offense)

Terry Ray Story- Domestic Assault

Bradley Shane Redmon- Assault

William Ray Roller, Jr and Kathy Ann Roller- promotion of methamphetamine, possession of a schedule II controlled substance for resale, possession of a schedule III controlled substance, and possession of paraphernalia.

James Walter Stringer (sealed indictment)- Rape of a child (3 counts)

David Anthony Taylor- Driving under the influence, violation of the implied consent law, driving on a suspended license, assault, and indecent exposure

Michael Glen Thomas- Driving under the influence

Amy Rachel Vanatta and Michael Shane Wilcher (sealed indictment)- Unlawful photographing (of an adult)

Matthew Wilbur- Sale and delivery of a schedule VI controlled substance, possession of a schedule VI controlled substance for resale, and possession of paraphernalia

Paul Willingham-Aggravated burglary, theft over $1,000

Kenneth Adam Wright- Driving under the influence (2nd offense), and Violation of the implied consent law

Anderson Indicted for Sexual Exploitation of a Minor

November 30, 2011
Dwayne Page
Andrew Justin Anderson
James Walter Stringer

A Smithville man has been named in a sealed indictment returned by the Grand Jury Monday on charges of sexual exploitation of a minor.

21 year old Andrew Justin Anderson of Hurricane Ridge Road, Smithville is charged with aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor and sexual exploitation of a minor.

The indictments allege that "on or about the 9th day of June, 2010, Anderson did knowingly promote, sell, distribute, transport, or exchange material that included over 100 images of a minor engaging in sexual activity or simulated sexual activity that is patently offensive, constituting the offense of sexual exploitation and aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor"

His bond is $150,000 and he will be in court on Monday, December 12.

In a separate case, 34 year old James Walter Stringer of Church Street, Liberty is named in a sealed indictment charging him with three counts of rape of a child. His bond is $200,000 and he will be in court on Monday, December 12.

The indictments allege that twice between March 10 and April 2 and again on April 21, Stringer allegedly engaged in sexual activity with a twelve year old girl constituting the offense of rape of a child. This case was investigated by the Smithville Police Department.

Meanwhile, 47 year old Steven Dale Osment of Will Daniel Road, Woodbury is named in a sealed indictment on a charge of hindering a secured creditor. His bond is $10,000 and he will appear for arraignment in criminal court on Monday, December 12.

40 year old Amy Rachel Vanatta and 39 year old Michael Shane Wilcher both of McMinnville were co-indicted on a charge of unlawful photographing (of an adult). Bond for each is $10,000 and they will appear for arraignment in court on Monday, December 12.

THP Investigates Two Wrecks Near Sligo Bridge Tuesday

November 30, 2011
Dwayne Page
Timothy Wayne and Pamela Gail Turner escape serious injury in truck crash
Another View of Turner's Truck

Two people were involved in a pickup truck accident Tuesday afternoon on Highway 70 just east of Sligo bridge.

Central dispatch received the call at 12:15 p.m.

Trooper Dewaine Jennings of the Tennessee Highway Patrol told WJLE that 43 year old Timothy Wayne Turner was driving east on Highway 70 in a 1999 Ford Ranger when he tried to negotiate a curve. The truck went off the left side of the highway, entered a ditchline and rolled onto its side.

Turner got out of the truck under his own power. His wife, 50 year old Pamela Gail Turner was removed from the vehicle by DeKalb EMS and members of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Team..

She was by taken by ambulance to DeKalb Community Hospital but she was not believed to have been seriously hurt.

In addition to the county's extrication and rescue team, members of the Midway station of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department were also on the scene. Trooper Jennings said Mr. Turner was cited for failure to maintain lane of travel.

Two hours later, another wreck occurred at the same location. Central dispatch received the call at 2:26 p.m.

Trooper Jennings said 22 year old Troy William Hammons was going east in a 2001 GMC Sierra when his truck went off the left side of the road and into the ditchline. His vehicle did not roll over. After the crash investigation, a wrecker pulled him out and Hammons was able to drive away. He was not injured.

County Giving Serious Consideration to Developing Solid Waste Transfer Station

November 29, 2011
Dwayne Page
Overton County Solid Waste Transfer Station (Photo by David McDowell)
Overton County Recycling Center (Photo by David McDowell)
Inside Transfer Station (Notice Open Top Semi Truck Trailer to Right)
Baler for Recycling (Photo by David McDowell)
Baled Cardboard (Photo by David McDowell)
Baled Plastic(Photo by David McDowell)

County Mayor Mike Foster and five members of the county commission took a trip to Livingston last week to get a first hand look at Overton County's solid waste transfer station. During Monday night's county commission meeting, members who made the trip indicated that they were impressed with the operation and seemed to be open to the idea of developing a transfer station in DeKalb County once the current Class I landfill has reached its capacity within the next two or three years.

Under a transfer station operation, household garbage would continue to be collected at local convenience centers across the county, then loaded onto trucks and brought to the transfer station, where the garbage would be separated from recyclables and then loaded onto semi trucks and transferred to a landfill site in another county. DeKalb would contract for the garbage to be hauled out of county and for the disposal of it at a certain price per ton. The recyclables would be baled and sold.

Foster, during the Monday night meeting and in an interview with WJLE Tuesday morning, explained how Overton County's operation works. "We went up there to look at their transfer station and recycling center. We're also going to look at two or three others. In Overton County they do about twelve thousand tons a year (household garbage) and we do about fourteen thousand tons a year. They had a building there (for the solid waste transfer and a shed for storing bales of recyclables). They bring their solid waste into a centralized location, dump it and segregate it. The rest of the main garbage they load onto a truck and haul it to a commercial site and pay a fee for dumping it in there. They don't have the environmental liability of running a landfill. We're looking at this option due to all the environmental rules we have to go by," said Foster

"We were impressed with how clean the thing was (Overton County Transfer Station) and how well managed it was," said Foster. They use some inmate help to go through the materials. They contract with a hauler that backs a semi truck in. The top of the truck sets level with the floor that you dump on to. The garbage is then loaded onto the truck and its hauled away to a landfill site that is contracted to dispose of the garbage", he said.

According to Foster, DeKalb County would have fewer environmental worries about solid waste, if it had its own transfer station or contracted with some entity or company to provide the service. "Right now (at the landfill) we have to put a 40 mil plastic liner over the entire mound of dirt when you're through as well as a 60 mil liner underneath it and then you have to put dirt on top of all that. The costs have just gone through the roof in the last three or four years so we're going to look at the option of doing that (transfer station). We may still want to run a class III/IV cell that doesn't require that (so many regulations) which would be mainly for construction materials and things like that and not household garbage," said Foster

"If we do that (develop a transfer station) we don't have the expense of building a new (Class I landfill) cell which is so expensive because now you have to put a rubber liner under and over it. These environmental issues are overpowering and you have a lot of liability there," In addition, environmental regulations require the county to monitor old landfill sites for several years after they have been closed.

Should the county develop a transfer station, Foster said it would be situated on about a four acre site somewhere in the county. "Ideally it would be better if it were centrally located but we would have room at the (existing) landfill. We would also probably want to keep a Class III/IV cell for construction materials. We've got two or three years to make this decision," said Foster.

Convenience sites would still be required throughout the county and residents could continue to bring their household garbage there or directly to the transfer station. "We would still have some convenience sites out in the county but maybe not as many. Right now we have twelve sites. We would still have to turn in to the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) how much we bring in, how much we recycle, and what we dispose of. We'd probably go to mainly compactor cans (at convenience sites) where you can get eight or ten tons of garbage in one can rather than the open tops. Then you bring it (household garbage) into a transfer station. Dump it out. You have people there that pull out the cardboard, the metal, the plastics, and some of the things that you can recycle and then you dump the household garbage into a semi truck. You pull the recyclables out and put them in boxes and take them to another shed and bale them into bales of about 1300 pounds apiece. Meanwhile the garbage you put in that semi truck, you pay some landfill to take it and dispose of it that way you don't have to have a Class I landfill. So its hauled and disposed of, then you bale your recyclables and put them into a storage shed until you get enough for a load or two and sell them to some agency or company that buys it (recyclables)," said Foster.

The county commission Monday night voted to seek a grant to purchase a new baler for reclying purposes. "As we talked about Monday night, we're applying for a grant to get a baler where we can get back into this (recycling) process. Before we had contracted with two different guys, but they fell on hard times when cardboard went to twelve dollars a ton. It costs probably $75 (a ton) to handle it and bale it. We got out of that business because they were supplying the balers. Now that its back up to a good price, I think we can get back into it," said Foster

In the meantime, Foster said he and members of the county commission plan to visit other counties that have transfer stations. "We're probably going to go to Crossville soon. We'll also probably go to Woodbury. Crossville has a transfer station but they don't own it. Its owned by a subsidiary of Waste Management and they built the transfer station. Cumberland County just brings their garbage there and dumps it. They then pay them (Waste Management) a fee to handle it from that point on. We want to look at both scenarios so we can figure out which one best suits us. Depending on the costs involved, I personally would rather do the subsidiary where somebody else builds the facility and we just carry materials to them. That way we would not be out that initial cost. There's a lot of good benefits to that. They would have more experience in running that than we would so it just seems like a better fit," said Foster.

Two Men Indicted in Child Sex Crimes

November 29, 2011
Dwayne Page
Kenneth Lee Moore
Joseph Elwood Selby

Two men have been indicted by the Grand Jury in separate sex crimes against a child.

42 year old Kenneth Lee Moore of Midway Road, Smithville was indicted Monday for the rape of a child.

According to Sheriff Patrick Ray, Moore allegedly raped his twelve year old niece on November 15th, 2010. The child, who was living with Moore at the time, awoke from sleep to find Moore making sexual contact with her.

Meanwhile 30 year old Joseph Elwood Selby of Jim Garrett Road, Monterey has been indicted on a charge of sexual battery.

Sheriff Ray said that on Saturday, July 2nd at Floating Mill Park on Center Hill Lake, Selby was swimming and touched a 12 year old female on the buttocks several times in a sexual manner making her feel uncomfortable and afraid.
These two men will appear for arraignment in DeKalb County Criminal Court on Monday, December 12.

Owens Gets Six Year Sentence

November 29, 2011
Dwayne Page
Tyrone D. Owens
Carlos Lynn Godsey

35 year old Tyrone D. Owens appeared in DeKalb County Criminal Court on Monday and pleaded guilty to charges of theft of property over $1,000 and two count of aggravated burglary.

Owens received a three year sentence in each case all suspended to TDOC probation except the first year is to be supervised by community corrections. Two of the sentences are to run consecutively for a total of six years. His sentence is to run concurrently with any other sentence against him including a case in Warren County. Owens must serve at least thirty percent of the sentence before his release eligibility date. He must also make restitution in an amount to be determined later.

39 year old Steve Allen Hale pleaded guilty to simple possession and a second offense of driving under the influence. He received a sentence of 11 months and 29 days in each case, all suspended to CPS probation, except for 49 days to serve. The two sentences are to run consecutively for a total of almost two years. Hale must pay a fine of $610. He will lose his license for not less than two years. Hale was given jail credit of 49 days served.

Hale was arrested on Sunday, August 1st,2010 by Smithville Police. He was observed by Officer James Cornelius failing to maintain proper lane of travel. Hale was stopped on the traffic violation and Officer Cornelius noticed that Hale's speech was slurred and that he was unsteady on his feet. Hale submitted to four sobriety tasks and he performed poorly. Officer Cornelius asked Hale to remove all items from his pockets. Removed were approximately 5 grams of a green leafy substance believed to be marijuana, 20 blue pills, 8 white pills and a pack of JB rolling papers.

51 year old James Adamson pleaded guilty to aggravated assault and violation of the habitual motor vehicle offender law. He received a four year sentence to serve at least thirty percent before his release eligibility date in the aggravated assault case. Adamson got a two year sentence in the HMVO case. The two sentences are to run concurrently with each other. He is to make restitution in an amount to be determined later. Adamson was given jail credit from January 24 to May 24, 2011.

32 year old Carlos Lynn Godsey pleaded guilty to abuse of a child under the age of six. He received a four year sentence in the community corrections program. The sentence is to run concurrently with his parole in a federal sentence against him.

Sheriff Patrick Ray said that 25 year old Lois Nicole Cobble had taken her four year old child to River Park Hospital in McMinnville on Saturday, January 1st for another medical reason when hospital staff apparently noticed bruises on the child's legs, back, butt, and head. The child also smelled strongly of urine.

Warren County authorities and members of the Department of Children Services were called initially. A further investigation by the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department revealed that the child had been whipped excessively with a belt and switch.

Both Cobble and Godsey, her boyfriend, were arrested.

Cobble, charged with child abuse and neglect, appeared in criminal court in October and was granted judicial diversion probation for two years.

Fire Destroys Building on Property of Country Music Entertainer Billy Dean

November 29, 2011
Dwayne Page
Fire on Billy Dean property (Photo by Mike Conley)

A combination barn/one bedroom apartment on the property of country music entertainer Billy Dean on Dale Lane off Dale Ridge Road was destroyed by fire Friday afternoon.

County Fire Chief Donny Green told WJLE that a neighbor saw the smoke and called 911.

According to Chief Green, a farm worker, who lived in the apartment, had left around 12:30 p.m. and was gone when smoke from the fire was spotted about an hour later.

Firefighters found the structure fully involved in flames when they arrived. No one was there and no one was injured. The cause of the fire is undetermined.

Chief Green said the barn housed two John Deere tractors, ski boat, and miscellaneous power tools. Again, the structure also housed a furnished one bedroom apartment.

Members of the Liberty, Main Station, and tanker truck of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department responded along with the Sheriff's Department.

Firefighters were called out again on Saturday to James Place in the Lakeview Mountain Estates area where a brush fire rekindled and spread.

Chief Green said Brian Casselberry had obtained a burning permit and had burned some brush on his property. He remained with the fire until it was out and then began cutting some wood. After being outside for a couple of hours, he entered his home to take a shower and discovered that fire had rekindled when he came back out. The blaze spread to the neighbor's property belonging to Roger Dale Bailey, burning a vacant mobile home and five abandoned vehicles which were apparently inoperable. The fire also burned about five acres of woodland.

Members of the Cookeville Highway, Short Mountain Highway, and Main Station of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department responded along with the Tennessee Division of Forestry.

Grand Jurors Visit DeKalb County Jail

November 29, 2011
Dwayne Page

Members of the Grand Jury visited the DeKalb County Jail and issued the following report on Monday. "Sheriff Patrick Ray provided a tour of the facility and answered all specific questions of grand jurors."

"The condition observed seemed to be satisfactory. The jurors were told there were 90 prisoners housed in the jail as of today (Monday)."

"Sheriff Ray told the group his department works with the local school system nutritionist to be sure the three daily meals provided are nutritionally sound and meet the calorie requirements required by the state."

"The Grand Jurors also observed bonds required for all county officials. All seemed to be in order"


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