Escapes Lead To Suspension

There are 20 comments on the Sep 23, 2008, www.knoxnews.com story titled Escapes Lead To Suspension. In it, www.knoxnews.com reports that:

Loudon County Sheriff Tim Guider on Monday suspended four officers in connection with a suspect who escaped three times in 10 hours. Two corrections officers and two deputies guarding a suspect at a hospital each have been suspended for three days without pay, Guider said Monday. At the center of the action was 18-year-old Joshua O'Brien Hayworth of Loudon, who faces two counts of escape, and counts of felony theft, felony fleeing and vandalism, the sheriff said. Hayworth was being held Monday in the Loudon County Jail without bond. Guider said the action involving Hayworth began at about 2 p.m. Sunday when authorities were alerted that a late 1990s Ford Crown Victoria was being driven in an erratic manner on Harrison Road near Lenoir City High School. The license plate information called in by a resident showed that the car had been reported stolen earlier Sunday in Lenoir City, Guider said. Loudon County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Tony Aikens encountered the car on Sugarlimb Road near Hotchkiss Valley Road and a short chase resulted, the sheriff said. Hayworth abandoned the car in a field and ran. At 5 p.m., Hayworth was in custody.

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jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#1 Sep 23, 2008
I'm not smart enough about how to run a sheriff's department to know whether these suspensions are justified, but it is telling from my point of view that who you are and who you know seems to make a great deal more difference than what you do - and how what you do effects the people.

Apparently, you can discount property assessments for monied friends costing the people millions in lost revenue without suffering the ignominy of public discipline.

Apparently, you can coerce a suspect into paying thousands of dollars in exchange for his freedom without suffering the ignominy of public discipline.

Apparently, you can ignore the people's life-safety experts and allow a public school to fall so badly into disrepair that the school must be closed to occupancy by students and not suffer the ignominy of public discipline.

But let four officers commit minor tactical errors which a determined suspect exploits to flee, and someone's gotta pay.

I am not suggesting that these officers shouldn't be disciplined. As I said, I'm not smart enough to judge that.

I'm only saying that if they are to be held to account, then even a stunted notion of justice demands that many other be hold to account as well if the people are to have any confidence in the people and institutions that they pay to administer their power. Accountability shouldn't just apply to those in the lower pay grades.
you need help

Loudon, TN

#2 Sep 23, 2008
I really do not know who has hurt you so bad here. Tim Guider had no control over any of those cases you just stated.

He has held accountability at all levels. Just because you do not like the outcome does not make his administrative accountability any less attentive.

1 you are talking of Arp
2 you are talking of Aikens that has already been to court(twice).
3 you are talking of schools

As I have stated, Sheriff Guider has performed a terrific job for Loudon County. Do not list things as if he was personally responsible!
you need help

Loudon, TN

#3 Sep 23, 2008
To quote someone near and dear to me. "GAH"
jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#4 Sep 23, 2008
you need help:

Try getting someone to read the post for you. You know ... reading ... that thing you've witnessed smarter people do with books but never quite understood.

There is not a single complaint about Sheriff Guider, or a criticism of the suspension in the post. On the contrary, I went to some trouble to express that I'm not smart enough to judge the suspensions. The post contrasted conflicted notions of accountability in local administration of the people's power.

Not every situation is a nail, even if the only tool you're smart enough to use is a hammer.
you need help

Loudon, TN

#5 Sep 23, 2008
See, you are using your mouth to hurl insults. Go reread your post and read the word BUT!

Negativity philosophy is not good for the soul.

Even using Aikins as an example was bad as it was dismissed. You should be as upset as I am that our tax money went to such bull as that. It could had went to the schools, but NO you guys see red and want something, anything.

"GAH"
you need help

Loudon, TN

#6 Sep 23, 2008
I should see if we can make the plaintiff pay back the county for that frivolous suit! Does anyone know the answer to that?
jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#7 Sep 23, 2008
Do you even read these posts before you reflexively launch into your babbling apologetic defense of the good ole boys?

Your conditioned response to that stimulus is almost Pavlovian. Without even reading the post to know whether it is situationally appropriate, you drop to your knees and start smooching things.

I'm going to generously assume that you're smart enough to hold a bead on simple ideas and give you some help here.

First, I didn't insult you with my mouth. I did so with my fingers - and the profound stupidity of your post was begging to be insulted. This is a text format. I may insult you in voice later in a podcast, but so far, its all text. I haven't said a word.

Second, Aikens is an excellent example of the point I offered. The ultimate disposition of his criminal case notwithstanding - and it wasn't a subtle point (or wouldn't have been to most reasonably bright 5th graders).

Third, committing a crime makes one a criminal. Being convicted makes one a "convicted criminal". Criminals are acquitted and escape justice every day in America. Ask the families of Nicole Brown-Simpson and Ronald Goldman. Does that escape mean they didn't commit crimes?

I honestly can't believe I'm having this conversation with an adult. Surely as wealthy and powerful as the good old boys are, they can afford smarter apologists.
you need help

Loudon, TN

#8 Sep 23, 2008
I, for one, applaud Tim Guider and the excellent leadership he has given to Loudon County. Before he was elected this town was held prisoner by the known felon, Joe Sims. It was a dark time for this town. Extortion was not uncommon for the merchants and the officers that were not crocked was not given a chance for promotions or higher wages.

We should applaud the changes. I know he will be fair to the young officers mentioned in this article, while at the same time keeping the citizens safe.
jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#9 Sep 23, 2008
I know, like and admire Tim Guider.

I know and personally like Tony Aikens too.

It is unfortunate that Sheriff Guider's tenure will be marred at least in part by the stain of moral cowardice for his failure to fire Mr. Aikens when Mr Aikens' role in coercing a suspect to pay money as an alternative to facing legitimate justice became a matter of public record.

Whether that behavior is ultimately found to be criminal conduct as defined by Tennessee Code remains to be seen - but the mechanics of the transaction itself were never in question - in fact, it is those mechanics which compelled two grand juries to return indictments.

Criminal or not, such extra-legal "fund raising" casts an indelible stain on the honesty, fidelity and professional excellence of the department. I have no doubt that if a junior deputy had "cut such a deal", he would be in prison right now - or at least no longer serving as a sworn peace officer in Loudon County.

I am convinced that Tim Guider would never have made such a sordid money-for-freedom deal himself. Oddly, Tim deserved better too.
jfly

Knoxville, TN

#10 Sep 23, 2008
oddly Mr. Webb there you go again, judge ,jury, and executioner, Why don't we just get rid of the court system completely. We also have no need for elections, since Mr. Guider was elected sherriff after the incident you refer to, and just let you decide all court matters and decide whom should be the officials running the town and county. If you need any counsel you just call Van Shaver. Talk about a good ole boy network.
jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#11 Sep 23, 2008
jfly:

I've read your paragraph five times and besides the thinly veiled ad hominem and the generous advice you offered, I still don't have the slightest idea what you're on about. I think it might be a sophomoric attempt at sarcasm, but I'm just not sure.

Take some time. Gather your thoughts. Collect your objection into some sort of lucid argument that you can articulate - then tell me where I've erred.

Please keep in mind that your subjective opinion is no more relevant to me than ... well, its just not relevant. However, if I have make a factual error, I will be happy to correct it.
jfly

Knoxville, TN

#12 Sep 23, 2008
You have erred in sitting down in front of a computer and striking a keyboard with your fingers. Because everything in your post is just simply wrong. Who are you to say a man is a criminal that has been acquited. Your man Scot McCluen tainted that grand jury and that was proven. I am not just sitting here babling like you seem to do. You know Mr. Webb I used to have respect for your opinion but that is gone now. You are ruthless. You have a total disreguard for facts. Let me tell you Mr. Webb running a sheriffs department is not the only thing you are not smart enough to do. Let me try to break it down for you (1) You say Tony Aikens is a criminal when he has been to court twice on bs charges that everyone tried to tell McCluen not to persue and low and behold the Judge cleared Mr. Aikens.(2) You say the mechanics of the transaction were all wrong. Yet and still this is the way many sheriff and police departments accross this state operates. This transaction has been proven over and over not to have benefited Mr. Aikens as all funds were in an account for Loudon County. Now do you think Mr. McCluen might possibly have been acting in concert with Mr.
Guiders opponent ? Oh he just happened to be on Mr. McCluen payroll. Do not sell the public short they seen right through this political ploy and re-elected Tim Guider sheriff and ousted Mr. McCluen from his post as DA. So you see what I meant, you still say the Judge was wrong, so we don't need him you can be the judge. Mr. Guider was re-elected which you say was wrong so why don't we just let you decide all the county offices so the public will not make these mistakes. I know my sarcasm may be sophomoric, but your comprehension skills are surley second grade level.

Since: Jun 07

United States

#13 Sep 23, 2008
you need help wrote:
2 you are talking of Aikens that has already been to court(twice).
Aikens' extortion case has never been tried in court.
1. He has been indicted twice for extortion (and once for evidence tampering).
2. Judge Buddy Scott dismissed both extortion indictments on technicalities (three such dismissals, when you count the evidence tampering).
3. The facts of these cases have NEVER been tried in court.

If you want to claim he has been exonerated, then here's how you can prove it: Get Aikens, since he's running for reelection to city council, to write an at-length article discussing the details of these cases, explaining to the voters exactly what happened. He can post it on the web, and/or in the newspapers, and/or in flyers he mails out.

You see..........since they were all technical dismissals (the second one overturned by the court of criminal appeals) and the statute of limitations has not run out, he will never do that. He knows he can still be tried, and anything he says he can be confronted with in the courtroom.
Only after DAG RJ won an election was he spared going to trial. He can still be tried.

Since: Jun 07

United States

#14 Sep 23, 2008
jfly wrote:
he has been to court twice on bs charges that everyone tried to tell McCluen not to persue and low and behold the Judge cleared Mr. Aikens.
That is false.
No judge "cleared" Mr Aikens.
He twice dismissed indictments on purely technical grounds. The second dismissal was appealed by the state attorney general, and the court of criminal appeals ruled that the judge "erred" (which was putting it nicely).

You can quit saying he has been "cleared", and "exonerated", and all of the other synonymns for what you are claiming. It simply isn't true.

If you're sure what you're saying is true, get him to write that article for the voters which I mentioned above.
jfly

Knoxville, TN

#15 Sep 23, 2008
You guys just keep hanging on to those straws and ignore the facts.

Since: Jun 07

United States

#16 Sep 23, 2008
jfly wrote:
You guys just keep hanging on to those straws and ignore the facts.
No, I am stating facts. You keep hanging onto the spin.

I'll try this here (even though RoadRunner couldn't get any answer on the other blog):

What in my two posts above do you claim is factually incorrect?
jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#17 Sep 23, 2008
jfly:

Ahem ...

1. Mr. Aikens was not "acquitted".

An acquittal is a finding by a jury which holds that the state did not bear its burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt and since the matter has not been heard by a jury (yet), no acquittal is possible (yet).

2. The "mechanics" to which I refer are the same ones that two grand juries considered and found sufficiently persuasive to indict - guided by the applicable Tennessee Code (provided for your reference - pay special attention to 39-14-112 (a)(2)):

39-14-112. Extortion.

(a) A person commits extortion who uses coercion upon another person with the intent to:(1) Obtain property, services, any advantage or immunity; or (2) Restrict unlawfully another's freedom of action.

(b) It is an affirmative defense to prosecution for extortion that the person reasonably claimed:(1) Appropriate restitution or appropriate indemnification for harm done; or (2) Appropriate compensation for property or lawful services.

(c) Extortion is a Class D felony.[Acts 1989, ch. 591, 1.]

NOTE: I am not able to find that provision of the code which offers as a defense: "other people do it too", or "the money was for a good cause", or "I gave the money back once I knew he didn't really WANT to pay it to me".

3. I did not "say that Tony is a criminal". See the "criminal or not ..." section of my post.

I said that commission of a crime is what makes someone a criminal; and that conviction of the commission of a crimes makes someone a "convicted criminal" - clearly drawing the distinction between the two in order to dismiss the preposterous argument that since there has been no conviction, there has been no crime.

4. I don't give a tinker's dam what you do, or do not respect. The truth is that my attitude toward you in general hovers precariously between complacency and contempt. To me, you're just another in a long sad line of humbly educated dolts, ferociously arguing beyond your own knowledge and skill. In short, you have my leave to dislike me as much as you wish.

Still, I think I can offer you a workable solution: Don't read my posts if they upset you - but you can bet your ass that I will continue to write them.

"you're welcome to your own opinion. You are not welcome to your own facts" ~ anonymous
PHQ

Mcminnville, TN

#18 Sep 23, 2008
I don't see why the guy was even complaining about aikens takin his money. He got off with no charges against him and only losing money he had gotten illegally anyway. He could have been in jail. And Aikens didn't keep the money for himself.
jfly

Knoxville, TN

#19 Sep 23, 2008
Swing and a miss , you just missed again maybe the point that other people do it is not a defense it is a fact the transaction is a Legal excepted pratice . I know you guys have sour grapes because you are wrong again. Not only wrong just plain idiots. Keep hanging to your straws. The judge was wrong the voters were wrong you and McCluen were right . I am sorry but what dumbasses you guys are.
jrwebb

Cookeville, TN

#20 Sep 23, 2008
PHQ wrote:
I don't see why the guy was even complaining about aikens takin his money. He got off with no charges against him and only losing money he had gotten illegally anyway. He could have been in jail. And Aikens didn't keep the money for himself.
Even if all that were true (and I don't know how you can determine where the money came from), none of it has anything at all to do with whether the crime of extortion was committed.

The 5th Amendment to the Constitution state that no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.

Every person is entitled to due process - whether we like them or not and cutting a deal with the local authorities is not "due process". When we abandon that principal for the sake of expedience, then we might as well start swinging through the trees again.

We are a society of laws - not of men.

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