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Livingston, TN

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#1
Feb 5, 2009
 
Body found at construction site
Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Tuesday, Jan 27, 2009
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Herald-Citizen Photo/Camille Fliss-Mayberry Cookeville Police Detective Lt. Carl Sells, far left, talks to someone by phone while Detectives Brent Anderson, right, and Yvette Demming log evidence and other officers stand by at a construction site at Old Walton Road and Neal Street yesterday where the body of a man who had committed suicide was found.
COOKEVILLE -- A Nash Avenue man was found shot to death at a construction site not far from his home yesterday afternoon, and police say he committed suicide.

The body of Welburne Johnson, 52, was found inside a large concrete tile at a construction site at Old Walton Road and Neal Street just after noon on Monday. He had been shot once in the neck and still held a gun in his right hand, according to a report by Cookeville Police Officer Brandon Tayes.

Johnson was a medical doctor and had worked in the emergency room at Cookeville Regional Hospital a few years ago, but was not currently practicing medicine, Detective Lt. Carl Sells said.

Although the body was not discovered until afternoon, police believe Johnson went to the construction site very early Monday morning, Sells said.

"One of the items he had with him was a flashlight," he said. "He lives about half a mile from where he was found, and his family had last seen him Sunday night."

Johnson left a note, enclosed in a plastic bag and found near his body, in which he apologized for the "hurt he knew this would cause his family," the detective said.

He had also apparently put a note which included a computer generated map into his mailbox at his home, and that map showed where his body would be found, Sells said.

The map was discovered by a neighbor on Monday around noon when she went to place Johnson's mail -- which she had found in her own mailbox -- into his mailbox, says the report by Tayes.

She called police and reported that "she had a piece of mail in her mailbox that belonged to her neighbor and that when she opened his mailbox to put it in there, she noticed a paper standing upright behind the mailbox door and recognized it to be out of place," the report says.

"She read the paper and noticed it to be a map and it gave directions to a body. I followed the map to the construction site. The map said there would be a body inside some concrete tiles stacked up. I walked over to the tiles and noticed a body lying down inside a tile."

Tayes then called for detectives, and an investigation was conducted. The body was sent to Nashville for an autopsy.

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Livingston, TN

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#2
Feb 5, 2009
 

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Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Tuesday, Jan 27, 2009
By MARY JO DENTON

HERALD-CITIZEN Staff

LIVINGSTON -- Curtis Hayes, mayor of Livingston, is thinking of issues not just on a local scale these days, but also on a state and national level. The cities and towns of the Upper Cumberland and how they weather the economic recession and modern-day dangers are on his mind.

And two trips he took recently helped him focus on those issues.

He hopes the results will benefit everyone.

Mayor Hayes was recently appointed by Gov. Phil Bredesen to the Governor's Citizen Corps Advisory Committee, a group that will study Homeland Security issues for this state. He met with that committee in Nashville on Jan. 23.

The mayor also attended last week's inauguration of Barack Obama as the nation's 44th president, a history-making event that was especially moving for Hayes, who is the Upper Cumberland's only African-American mayor.

The goals of the Governor's Citizen Corps fit well with the new president's philosophy of asking citizens to shoulder responsibilities in their communities.

One aim of the committee is to "foster a culture of citizenship and social responsibility by encouraging public service and by building patriotism and pride," according to officials in the governor's office.

"There is also an emphasis on Homeland Security issues," Hayes told the Herald-Citizen.

"There are representatives on the committee from Red Cross, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, and many other agencies. The committee will be working to improve emergency preparedness in all communities, and I will be especially interested in 911 centers, fire departments, police departments in the Middle Tennessee area. We'll be looking for grants and any other funding help we can get."

Hayes is hopeful that the new administration in Washington will be able to turn the economy around and that funding for community needs will increase when that happens.

He is encouraged that "we now have a leader the people trust," he said.

"He knows that the economy is not in good shape right now and the past administration just didn't seem to want to address it."

Attending the inauguration of the nation's first African-American president meant a lot to Hayes, who was first elected to the Livingston city council back in 2000, apparently the first-ever black official in that county.

In 2006, he was elected mayor for a two-year term and in 2008, he was re-elected to the position's newly chartered four-year term.

In Washington last week, Hayes stood about 100 yards from the spot where Obama took the oath of office, he said.

"It meant a lot to see someone up there who has crossed the same lines I've crossed years ago."

In the coming years, the mayor hopes he can help his town and the Upper Cumberland by his service on the governor's committee, and he hopes for the success of the new president, as that success will help the whole nation.

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Livingston, TN

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#3
Feb 5, 2009
 
Drag racers sent to jail
Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Thursday, Jan 22, 2009
COOKEVILLE -- It was just after 1 a.m. Saturday when police officers saw two vehicles drag racing in downtown Cookeville. Three men were later arrested.

Kevin Shane Barlow, 35, of Hilham Road, Cookeville, is charged with DUI in the case, and Michael Lewis Phann, 36, of Byrne Avenue, and Andrew Ray Stallion, 28, of Mount Herman Road, are each charged with evading arrest and public intoxication.

Cookeville Police Officer Cary Matheney was patrolling in the area of Washington Avenue when he saw a maroon colored Mustang pass by at a high rate of speed, and it appeared to be racing a black GMC Yukon, his report says.

"The Yukon's engine was accelerating at a high speed and trying to catch up with the Mustang." The officer pulled out planning to stop the two and succeeded in stopping the Yukon, he said. But the Mustang sped off into the parking lot of Premier Medical Park and went "around the building," he said.

Barlow was driving the Yukon and allegedly told the officer, when asked why he was speeding, "I was trying to catch the guys in that Mustang. They were talking about how much faster their car was than mine."

Matheney said Barlow was drunk, so he arrested him and took him to jail.

Meanwhile, Officer Chris Melton had driven behind the Premier building looking for the Mustang. He found it back there, but it was unoccupied, he said. He ran the vehicle's registration numbers and learned it belongs to Stallion.

Officer Jamey McCurry came out to help with the investigation and brought a tracking dog, which led the officers to a location across the street, where Phann and Stallion were found hiding behind a garbage bin, Melton's report says.

Melton was unable to determine which of the two had been driving, so he charged both with public intoxication and evading arrest.

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Mayors Tenure

Gainesboro, TN

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#4
Feb 5, 2009
 
So Curtis is IN for 4 years ?
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Livingston, TN

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#5
Feb 5, 2009
 

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Mayors Tenure wrote:
So Curtis is IN for 4 years ?
It would seem so huh?
we never hear

Livingston, TN

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#6
Feb 6, 2009
 

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Graveyard robber gets eight years
Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Thursday, Feb 05, 2009
LIVINGSTON -- An Overton County man accused of numerous thefts and burglaries, including stealing brass vases off graves, has been sentenced to eight years in prison.

Michael Fulton, 23, of School Mountain Road, recently went before Judge Leon Burns in Overton County Criminal Court and pleaded guilty to numerous counts of burglary and theft, as well as to TennCare fraud, most of the crimes occurring last year.

Among the many burglaries Fulton had been charged with or linked to by then-Overton Sheriff's Detective Greg Etheredge were these:

* Theft of items off graves at Overton County Memorial Gardens in April 2008.

* Theft of items off graves at Wirmingham Cemetery between April and June of 2008.

* Theft of items off graves at Campground Cemetery between April and June of 2008.

* Burglary of the Alpine Fire Department sometime between January and April, 2008.

* Burglary of Red Rock Tavern in January 2008.

* Theft of copper wiring from Livingston Limestone in March 2008.

Fulton also had been charged with fraudulently obtaining prescription drugs using TennCare benefits to which he was not entitled.

In all, the Overton grand jury had issued 16 indictments against Fulton.

The plea arrangement worked out earlier this week by his attorney, Bruce Myers, and Assistant District Attorney Owen Burnett resulted in the following:

He pleaded guilty to four counts of theft over $1,000, guilty to nine burglaries, guilty to two counts of TennCare fraud, and guilty to two counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.

Though he was sentenced on each count, some of the sentences were set to run at the same time, and the final result was a total of eight years to actually serve in prison.

Etheredge, who is now police chief in Livingston, said he was pleased with the outcome of the cases.

"It's one thing to steal old junk, but when it comes to going into cemeteries and stealing off the graves, that crosses the line," Etheredge said.

Burnett said he was pleased with the settlement of the cases and the eight year sentence for Fulton.

"I want to thank Sheriff W.B. Melton's department and all of his officers for the hard work they put in on these cases. Chief Etheredge and Detective Jacob Boswell did excellent work, and so did Lee Richards, who was with the Sheriff's Department at the time. And I want to thank State Inspector General Deborah Faulkner and Investigator Rodney Morton for their investigation of the TennCare violations."

Why is it we have to read about things like this in the Cookeville paper? Why is it not in our paper???????
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goldie

Livingston, TN

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#7
Feb 7, 2009
 

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why is it that we never hear allot of things? there are always things in the HC that are never in our local papers.When something is in our paper allot of times it won't tell the names of those they caught. I'm talking about things that happens in Livingston.Anyone know why?
Jury wannabe

Columbia, SC

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#8
Feb 7, 2009
 
we never hear wrote:
Graveyard robber gets eight years
Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Thursday, Feb 05, 2009
LIVINGSTON -- An Overton County man accused of numerous thefts and burglaries, including stealing brass vases off graves, has been sentenced to eight years in prison.
Michael Fulton, 23, of School Mountain Road, recently went before Judge Leon Burns in Overton County Criminal Court and pleaded guilty to numerous counts of burglary and theft, as well as to TennCare fraud, most of the crimes occurring last year.
Among the many burglaries Fulton had been charged with or linked to by then-Overton Sheriff's Detective Greg Etheredge were these:
* Theft of items off graves at Overton County Memorial Gardens in April 2008.
* Theft of items off graves at Wirmingham Cemetery between April and June of 2008.
* Theft of items off graves at Campground Cemetery between April and June of 2008.
* Burglary of the Alpine Fire Department sometime between January and April, 2008.
* Burglary of Red Rock Tavern in January 2008.
* Theft of copper wiring from Livingston Limestone in March 2008.
Fulton also had been charged with fraudulently obtaining prescription drugs using TennCare benefits to which he was not entitled.
In all, the Overton grand jury had issued 16 indictments against Fulton.
The plea arrangement worked out earlier this week by his attorney, Bruce Myers, and Assistant District Attorney Owen Burnett resulted in the following:
He pleaded guilty to four counts of theft over $1,000, guilty to nine burglaries, guilty to two counts of TennCare fraud, and guilty to two counts of obtaining a controlled substance by fraud.
Though he was sentenced on each count, some of the sentences were set to run at the same time, and the final result was a total of eight years to actually serve in prison.
Etheredge, who is now police chief in Livingston, said he was pleased with the outcome of the cases.
"It's one thing to steal old junk, but when it comes to going into cemeteries and stealing off the graves, that crosses the line," Etheredge said.
Burnett said he was pleased with the settlement of the cases and the eight year sentence for Fulton.
"I want to thank Sheriff W.B. Melton's department and all of his officers for the hard work they put in on these cases. Chief Etheredge and Detective Jacob Boswell did excellent work, and so did Lee Richards, who was with the Sheriff's Department at the time. And I want to thank State Inspector General Deborah Faulkner and Investigator Rodney Morton for their investigation of the TennCare violations."
Why is it we have to read about things like this in the Cookeville paper? Why is it not in our paper???????
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That low life scum!
Lock his ass up for a few years.
still believe

Livingston, TN

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#9
Feb 7, 2009
 
goldie wrote:
why is it that we never hear allot of things? there are always things in the HC that are never in our local papers.When something is in our paper allot of times it won't tell the names of those they caught. I'm talking about things that happens in Livingston.Anyone know why?
Hi, I have often wondered the same thing. I have seen pictures in the local papers of wrecks but no names of who they were. Why isn't our papers more informed? They must not have anyone out there getting news. Probably has to be brought to them from the HC. It is funny how we have to read the Cookeville paper to learn things going on in our town.
Strange to Me

Allons, TN

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#10
Feb 8, 2009
 
Jury wannabe wrote:
<quoted text>
That low life scum!
Lock his ass up for a few years.
I agree with you 100% he should be locked up!!
But I just find it Strange, that he get's 8 yrs.
And all the Drug Dealers, and Drug related cases, Tn Care Fraud, Child Abuse, Etc. get next to NOTHING!! Anyone else notice this??

“Oh Happy Day”

Since: Aug 08

Livingston, TN

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#11
Feb 10, 2009
 
Deputy arrested for drugs, soliciting sex
Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Monday, Feb 09, 2009
COOKEVILLE -- A Putnam Sheriff's deputy was arrested in a prostitution investigation in another county on Saturday and has been fired from his job, Sheriff David Andrews confirmed this morning.

Chris Lee Muncy, 31, of Spence Lane, Cookeville, a deputy here since May of 2001, was arrested in Coffee County on Saturday during an undercover investigation being conducted by Coffee County Sheriff Stephen Graves and other officers, Andrews said.

Muncy is accused of trying to trade drugs for sex with a female officer who was posing as a prostitute, Andrews said.

It happened at a motel in Manchester, and when Muncy was booked into the Coffee County jail, Graves phoned Andrews and informed him of what had happened.

"He called and asked me if I had a deputy named Chris Muncy, and I said I did," Andrews told the Herald-Citizen. "He told me that Chris was in custody there over an Internet sting they had conducted. I told him to treat Chris Muncy just like everyone else arrested."

Andrews said he immediately terminated Muncy from his job and sent Deputy Lt. Bryan Whitefield to Coffee County to collect Muncy's badge and service revolver.

This morning, Andrews had copies of five warrants which were filed against Muncy in Coffee County. The warrants charge him with drug and weapons violations and prostitution. The warrants allege the following:

* That Muncy was in possession of drug paraphernalia (rolling papers, pipes, and a grinder).

* That Muncy was unlawfully in possession of a weapon (a .38 revolver).

* That Muncy was in possession of five pills believed to be Hydrocodone pills.

* That Muncy was in possession of two plastic baggies containing marijuana.

* That Muncy met with an undercover deputy and solicited sex in exchange for drugs.

Andrews said the incident which brought Muncy's arrest was videotaped. He said that Muncy was booked into the Coffee County jail and made bond and was released later that evening.

Andrews said this morning that he has not yet talked to Muncy, but "terminated him immediately when I was informed about this."

"I will not tolerate people putting themselves into these positions to be questioned and arrested. If they put themselves into these kind of positions, they do not need to work here. He is a disgrace to this department and an embarrassment, a disgrace to law enforcement in general. Unfortunately, I cannot legislate intelligence."

The sheriff said he is in the process of notifying state officials of the charges against Muncy in an effort to have him decertified as a law enforcement officer.

“Oh Happy Day”

Since: Aug 08

Livingston, TN

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#12
Feb 10, 2009
 
Police Name Daughter As Suspect In Parents' Murders

Posted: Feb 10, 2009 08:10 AM

WESTEL, Tenn.- Police released the identities of the victims and the name of a suspect involved in a Cumberland County double murder.

Friday morning, authorities found two people with gunshot wounds to the head at a home on Milstone Mountain in Westel.

Once entering into the home, police found 66-year-old Charles Morris dead. Charles' wife, 62-year-old Barbara Morris, was transported to a hospital where she later died.

Police arrested Barbara's daughter, Lisa Brown, after she crashed her car on Interstate-40 with her 11-month-old infant in the car. Neither was seriously injured.

Police said Brown was in a custody dispute with her mother and stepfather, and she was seen leaving the home shortly before the bodies were found.

Brown has been behind bars. She faces two counts of first-degree murder.

“Seconds Count”

Since: Jan 09

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#13
Feb 10, 2009
 
tenniedoodles wrote:
Police Name Daughter As Suspect In Parents' Murders
Posted: Feb 10, 2009 08:10 AM
WESTEL, Tenn.- Police released the identities of the victims and the name of a suspect involved in a Cumberland County double murder.
Friday morning, authorities found two people with gunshot wounds to the head at a home on Milstone Mountain in Westel.
Once entering into the home, police found 66-year-old Charles Morris dead. Charles' wife, 62-year-old Barbara Morris, was transported to a hospital where she later died.
Police arrested Barbara's daughter, Lisa Brown, after she crashed her car on Interstate-40 with her 11-month-old infant in the car. Neither was seriously injured.
Police said Brown was in a custody dispute with her mother and stepfather, and she was seen leaving the home shortly before the bodies were found.
Brown has been behind bars. She faces two counts of first-degree murder.
It saddens me so much to hear of a son or daughter killing their parents. It makes you wonder what in the world goes on in their head.
in the news

Livingston, TN

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#14
Feb 15, 2009
 
Herald-Citizen Staff
Friday, Feb 13, 2009
GAINESBORO -- A Livingston teenager is in the Jackson County jail charged with making a bomb threat to a county school office building last Monday -- a telephoned threat which was not received for two days.

Justin Porter, 18, of Livingston, is charged with making a false report, a Class C felony, and is being held without bond pending a court hearing next week, according to Jackson County Sheriff's Detective Sgt. Marty Hinson.

The detective says it was Porter who phoned an office in the Jackson County Schools administration building on School Drive in Gainesboro about 1 a.m. Feb. 9.

The caller left his threatening message on an answering machine, but the school administrator who occupies that office was away at meetings until Wednesday, school officials said.

"She returned to work on Wednesday and played her messages and there it was," said Jackson Director of Schools Joe Barlow.

The caller said, "It's going to blow up!" He also left a name and a phone number where he could be contacted, but both the name and number were false, Detective Hinson said.

When the school administrator listened to her messages and heard the bomb threat, she notified Director Barlow, who called the Sheriff's Department.

The school administrative offices and an alternative school located in a nearby building were evacuated while law officers searched the buildings. No bomb was found.

Then, assisted by State Bomb and Arson Agent Greg Whittaker, Detective Hinson began tracking the caller.

Through interviews and other efforts, the investigators were led to Livingston, where Porter was developed as a suspect.

He was brought to the Livingston Police Department and questioned and allegedly confessed to making the call, characterizing it as a joke.

“Oh Happy Day”

Since: Aug 08

Livingston, TN

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#15
Mar 2, 2009
 
It's not from this area..the things people do
you talk about multi-tasking

Breast-feeding, cell-using driver charged
Ohio police cite woman with child endangerment

KETTERING, Ohio - Police in Ohio say a woman has been charged with child endangerment after another motorist reported she was both breast-feeding the youngster and talking on a phone while driving.

Police in the Dayton suburb of Kettering say the caller told them he saw the woman Thursday.

Officer Michael Burke says authorities used a license plate number to track down 39-year-old Genine Compton.
He said the woman told officers she was breast-feeding and wouldn't let her child go hungry.

Burke said the legal concern is that Compton had a child in her lap while driving, not that she was breast-feeding in public.

He said the child was under 2 years old.

Police say the woman faces up to 180 days in jail and a $1,800 fine if convicted of the misdemeanor.

“Oh Happy Day”

Since: Aug 08

Livingston, TN

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#16
Mar 2, 2009
 
Wanted since 1928: Cops aim to serve warrant
Document find prompts hunt for man accused of writing $30 bad check
ELIZABETHTON, Tenn.- The Carter County Sheriff's Department is trying to serve an 80-year-old warrant for the arrest of a man who wrote a $30 bad check, although officers are unsure if he is alive.

The warrant, issued in August 1928, calls for the arrest of J.A. Rowland. It says he owes $30 for the bad check,$2 for the arrest fee and 50 cents each for the affidavit and warrant.

Clerks at the Glynn County Sheriff's Office in Brunswick, Ga., recently found the warrant buried in a records storage room while cleaning and mailed it to Tennessee.
Current Carter County Sheriff Chris Mathes told The Elizabethton Star he is still under a legal obligation to find Rowland.
getting worse

Livingston, TN

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#17
Mar 4, 2009
 
Mary Jo Denton
Herald-Citizen Staff
Wednesday, Mar 04, 2009
COOKEVILLE -- School officials called police last week when a student's photo appeared on an Internet site with a request for someone to kill her.

Cookeville Police Officer Darrin Stout was sent to Avery Trace Middle School on Feb. 27 after a school assistant principal contacted police about the case.

Stout found that a 14-year-old girl had posted a photo of a 13-year-old girl, both students at Avery Trace, on her "MySpace" site with a message "requesting somebody to kill her," his report says.

A third student had seen the photo and the message and reported it to the assistant principal due to the "threatening comments," the report says.

The assistant principal talked to the girl suspected of placing the photo and the message on the site, and allegedly, she confessed.

Stout contacted the mother of the girl whose photo appeared on the site, and he also notified the Criminal Investigation Division of the case.

As of today, no further action had been taken, but Detective Lt. Carl Sells said the case is still under investigation.

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