Rhea County Judge Sets Bond for Man Accused of Murder
“Everyone is entitled to bond unless the presumption is great.”
A Rhea County man accused of killing his ex-wife's boyfriend could soon get out of jail. via WTVC Chattanooga
Join the discussion below, or Read more at WTVC Chattanooga.
#1 Oct 23, 2007
Judge McKenzie Reduces Bond For Accused
Rhea County Murderer
Crakston Cryler, editor
In Rhea County, Tennessee Len Rogers was arrested for murder and attempted
murder and soon may be able to post a bond thanks to Judge Jim Mckenzie. This
comes just one day after a lengthy bond hearing for Len Rogers, where his father,
ex-wife and detectives took the stand.
In court Vanessa Hawkins testified that, "prior to the shooting he had called me and
said if he couldn't have me nobody else would."
Sources say that Vanessa Hawkins was standing beside her boyfriend Greg Brown as
he was shot in the head and killed while inside her own home. And now, Len Rogers,
her former husband, faces charges of murder, attempted murder and phone call
harrassment. Rogers has been in custody since the July shooting. His attorney asks
that his $300,000 bond be reduced so that his family could afford to get him out.
Rogers' brother however said, "does he have a reputation for being a violent person?
No sir, no sir... I never heard anybody say anything about him being violent." Then
again, Len Rogers' brother Rusty Rogers is a deputy sheriff for the Rhea County
Sheriff's Department, as well as the former police chief of the Graysville Police
Department. This kinship between an accused murderer and a deputy sheriff brother
who wants to protect his brother must also protect a community he has sworn to protect
without favor. Naturally, it is circumstances such as these that spawn the small town
gossip surrounding this whole ordeal.
Burgess Holloway, a North Georgia resident who drove to Dayton for the hearing said,
"I don't see how the judge would even consider lowering Len Rogers' bond. People
have told me about the time when Judge Mckenzie was shot by a man and they set that
man's bond at 1 million dollars".
Holloway is referring to the incident that happened several years ago where Dayton
resident J.D. Creason got angry with his ex-wife's attorney (Jimmy McKenzie) and
shot McKenzie as he walked from the court house. McKenzie suffered several
superficial gun shot wounds from a .25 caliber pistol.
For this attempted murder upon the favored local attorney, Creason was hit with the
largest bail bond ever given to any person in Rhea County's almost 200 year history,
and that was only for an "attempt" to murder. J.D. Creason sat in the Rhea County jail
so long that by the time his trial date arrived, he was already elible for parole upon a
jury finding him guilty.
But, the prosecuting attorney valiantly fought to keep the bond of Len Rogers where it
was in hopes of keeping him behind bars saying, "there is a great possibility that this
man was attempting to kill this woman." In spite of the severity of a ruthless murder, a
woman in a total fear of her life, the judge ultimately decided to lower the accused Len
Rogers' bond to a total of just $185,000. A decision Vanessa Hawkins says frightens
here even more.
As news of the reduction in bond began to flow from the court house an unidentified
woman was ranting that "Rhea County was full of baby rapers and abusive men".
"When it comes to womens rights in Rhea County, there ain't none", she said.
Holloway was visibly upset and said that he was going to talk to the feds because he
has seen how small town justice works for some and not for others. He also said that
he feels that Rogers will get away with murder because of his relationship with the
Sheriff's Department. Rhea County Sheriff Mike Neal defends his department.
As for Vanessa Hawkins, her tragedy will continue. "All I can do is believe that God will
take care of me and my daughter if he does make the bond."
We will continue to follow this story as it unfolds.
#2 May 31, 2008
This sounds so familar- like certain Judges, attorneys, and police that are from Bloody " Bledsoe" So. Same justice. Like how does an attorney named H. Upchurch sit on the bench of a trial he's also an attorney on- Bledsoe Co is a sister to Rhea county for the corruption that goes on. I admire your courage to speak up- I've done so for several years and have gotten no-where. I thought the entire stae was crooked- but perhaps there are a few there that aren't after reading your statements.
Since: Feb 08
#3 Jun 4, 2008
I invite you to send anything that concerns you to www.RheaCountyNewspaper.com which is the newest, fastest growing, tell it like it really is news source for Rhea County (and surrounding counties. I contribute as much as I can to those who are trying to build a REAL news source. The Herald-News protects people like Howard Upchurch who serves/served as County Judge, County Attorney, County Tax Attorney and pretty much County everything. I always liked Howard and he gave me my first set of Tennessee Jurisprudence law books. But then again, I follow my own path as he follows his. The sad part to it all is some of these people's path will lead them straight to hell...And for the rest of them and those who do not like the "ugly truth", then they can go there...I will not even comment on how a fellow with a less than 2.0 GPA can become a damn police chief...Then again, you can read that article at www.RheaCountyNewspaper.com as well.
Constable Roy L. Denton, retired
#4 Jun 5, 2008
I know the feeling of the Upchurch wrath. I can't get an order of protection on my husband or his family because that is his lawyer and he would be the judge to hear and approve an order of protection. Talk about a conflict of interest!
#5 Jun 8, 2008
If you want to get an order of protection do not apply for it in the General Sessions court. This is the court that Upchurch is judge at in Bledsoe County. Instead, walk into the Circuit Court Clerk's office and request an "EX PARTE ORDER OF PROTECTION". This REQUIRES the clerk to issue a temporary order which will be served upon and read aloud to the offender/respondent so as to ensure he/she knows what is what. He/she then has 10 days to respond and you will go to court (Circuit) and then you will need to convince the Circuit Judge as to "why" this temporary Ex Parte Order of Protection should be extended. These are almost 100% extended for 1 year and one good reason is that if someone petitions the court for protection due to fear, and for some reason the judge disallows the protection order and the petitioner gets killed by the respondent, then the judge, his funky ass'd black robe and his saggy ass can end up in jail, at leat thrown off the bench. I know that this in all likelihood will NEVER happen but judges are human too and do not desire to be held to answer to the Tennessee Judicial Commission. Also, when you have difficulty on any state or city level, pump it up to the federal level and use your computer to search are United States Attorneys and go directly to them and raise hell. Don't let anyone intimidate you just because they think they can...
Constable Roy L. Denton, retired
#6 Aug 20, 2010
Who the hell is Burgess Halloway??? you seem to have forgotten.....Inosent until proven quilty!!! who the hell are you anyway Vanessas long lost friend???? what makes you believe her word is the "gospel"??? what ya folks do.n here?? oh Vanessa Hawkins must of been really F--king terrified...come on get real. if she was sooo scared of Len...whyd she put herself in thease kinds of situations....this all seems to be judgeing and hanging Len.....why isnt there anything on here about Vanessa or Burgess Halloway?? oh and P.S. did his brother Rusty ever do anything wrong? WHO THE HELL CARES IF HALLOWAY WAS UPSET??? what about all the familys involved? and were worried about HALLOWAY? PLEASE!and the woman "SCREAMING" about baby rapers and abusive men....thats a different issue from a murder accussation! and to you VANESSA, if your so fearful for your and your childs life??? why dont ya head on out with "burgess halloway"! he seems to believe in you.
#7 Oct 6, 2010
i beleve that roggers killed my dad cause it all points to him and he had been calling my dads girlfriends phone more than 22 time with in a 4 hour piroid and it has been over 3 years sence the death of my dad Greg Brown and i miss him SO much and i hope that ray roggers rots in jail and go's to hell
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