Local News Articles

Thirty Nine Tennessee Tech Students from DeKalb Make Dean's List

February 12, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
Thirty Nine Tennessee Tech Students from DeKalb Make Dean's List

Thirty nine students from DeKalb County have made the Dean’s List for the 2017 Fall Semester and nine have graduated at Tennessee Tech University.

Dean’s List students from DeKalb County are:

DeKalb - Alexandria
Kyra M Slager,

DeKalb - Dowelltown
Matthew M Antoniak, Peter Z Antoniak, Mary Sue Cantrell, Lucas Kyle Green, Steven J Laxton, Allyson F Trapp, Brittany N Wilkerson,

DeKalb - Liberty
Bailey T Hayes, Kenzie Mlynn Morris, Crystal P Vickers,

DeKalb - Smithville,
Connor N Apple, Jonathon L Ball, Vickey Sue Barrett, Jerica E Braswell, Downing Elizabeth Burke, Rayanna C Chapman, Brittany Danielle Ferrell, Travis D Ferrell, Seth J Gerringer, Jude Stuart Kaney, Troy Alexander Lee, Lauren A Lewis, Julia E Little, Mariah N Lynch, Martha L Martin, Brittany Faith Moseley, Annieka M Norton, Bethany B Poss, Erin Colwell Poss, Laura L Reed, Allison A Rogers, Emily A Snow, Shauna F Taylor, Darrian L Turner, Norman R Underhill, Dalton H Vaughn, Taylor Brook Watson, Anna C Webb.

The 2017 Fall Semester graduates from DeKalb County at Tech are:

DeKalb - Dowelltown
Mary Sue Cantrell,

DeKalb - Smithville
Connor N Apple, Brittany Danielle Ferrell, Kayla N Hershman, Martha L Martin, Brittany Faith Moseley, Laura L Reed, Norman R Underhill, Dalton H Vaughn.

Twenty Three DeKalb Students on Dean's List at MTSU

February 12, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
Twenty Three DeKalb Students on Dean's List at MTSU

More than 5,060 MTSU students including 23 from DeKalb County are on the latest Dean’s List for their academic achievements for the fall 2017 semester. Meanwhile five MTSU students from DeKalb County graduated during the 2017 fall semester.

To qualify for the Dean’s List, a student must maintain a current semester grade-point average of 3.5 or above and earn at least 12 semester hours.

The “Dean’s List” notation applies only to undergraduate students. MTSU’s lists are updated after each semester ends and student grades are posted.

Those making the MTSU Dean’s List from DeKalb County are:
Eddie Dwayne Blair of Liberty
Alec Camren Bryan of Smithville
Scotty Dale Colwell of Dowelltown
Briana N. Cutliff of Smithville
Taylor B. Ellis of Alexandria
Richard Anthony Fisher of Alexandria
Taylor Morgan Harris of Smithville
Michael Li Huang of Smithville
Delaney Louise Johnson of Smithville
Mackenzie Danielle Keaton of Smithville
Elizabeth Catherine Lasser of Smithville
Brandon Robert Leiser of Smithville
Kelsey Ann MacDonald of Alexandria
Elizabeth Jane Mason of Dowelltown
Gabrielle S. Mould of Liberty
Janice Marie Penny of Liberty
McKenzie B. Poteete of Liberty
James Puckett of Smithville
Alexis Louise Roller of Smithville
Jordan Alex Turner of Smithville
Heather Nicole Vaughn of Smithville
Morgan M. Vickers of Liberty
Maranda Skye White of DeKalb County

Meanwhile the 2017 MTSU Fall graduates from DeKalb County are
Scotty Dale Colwell of Dowelltown
Taylor Morgan Harris of Smithville
Christina Erin King of Smithville
Haley Danielle Parchman of Smithville
James Puckett of Smithville

Arkansas Man Charged with Being Fugitive from Justice

February 12, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
Timothy Allen Presley
Riley Cade Sexton

A man is facing extradition to Arkansas where he is wanted for being a fugitive from justice.

CLICK LINK BELOW TO VIEW MUG SHOTS OF PERSONS RECENTLY BOOKED AT THE DEKALB COUNTY JAIL- Intakes & Releases From: 2/05/2018 Thru: 2/12/2018)

Seagate Crystal Reports - REPOR_57.pdf (2.49 MB)

57 year old Timothy Allen Presley of Sherman Creek Road in Mulberry, Arkansas is under a $50,000 bond and his court date is February 15.

Sheriff Patrick Ray said that on Friday, February 9 before releasing Presley from custody in accordance with a court order, officers conducted a background check through NCIC and learned that he is wanted in Crawford County, Arkansas for failure to appear in court there on other charges. He is under a $15,000 bond there. Sheriff Ray said Arkansas authorities plan to extradite Presley.

18 year old Riley Cade Sexton of McMinnville Highway, Smithville is charged with domestic assault. His bond is $1,500 and his court date is March 1.
Sheriff Ray said that on Sunday, February 11 a deputy responded to a residence on McMinnville Highway for a physical domestic between a mother and son. Upon arrival the officer spoke to the mother, who said that her son, Sexton got into an argument with her and that he hit her with a microphone stand. Sexton admitted to having pushed his mother down. She had a red mark on her back where she was hit with the stand. Sexton was placed under arrest.

Groundbreaking Held for Sixth Habitat Family

February 11, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
Jayde Stanley,  Desmond Nokes, Jamie Nokes, Tayvian Nokes, and Justis Nokes
Jamie Nokes and Family Break Ground for Construction of their New Home on Hayes Street
Committee and Board members of Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County joined the new partner family, Jamie Nokes and her family Jayde Stanley, Tayvian Nokes, Desmond Nokes, and Justis Nokes for the brief groundbreaking ceremony Sunday at 204 Hayes Street.

A groundbreaking celebration was held Sunday afternoon for the sixth Habitat for Humanity home in DeKalb County.

Committee and Board members of Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County joined the new partner family, Jamie Nokes and her family Jayde Stanley, Tayvian Nokes, Desmond Nokes, and Justis Nokes for the brief ceremony at 204 Hayes Street.

“All Glory to God. I am just thankful for the Blessing. I know its something He has bestowed upon me. I am thankful for all the volunteers and for the Habitat organization. They are changing people’s lives and I am thankful I get to be one of those people and I look forward to eventually volunteering in the future and maybe serving on the board and doing all those things to pay for it. I am extremely blessed,” Nokes told WJLE.

During Sunday's groundbreaking ceremony, Alex Woodward made welcoming remarks and introduced the partner family. Chris Moore of the Smithville Church of God gave the invocation and Jordan Atnip of the Smithville First Baptist Church read scripture from Psalm 145: 3-7; Matthew 5:13-14, and Matthew 7:24-29 The ministers then offered the Prayers of Blessing and led the gathering in the Responsive Reading based on Psalm 118:19-29 followed by the groundbreaking, the Lord’s Prayer, and finally a closing prayer.

The public is urged to support the construction of the home with donations.

“Habitat for Humanity wants you to help us Frame with God’s Word in our new house. For a $5 donation your favorite bible verse and name will be written on the frame work of our latest Habitat home. Our goal is to cover Jamie Nokes and her family with God’s message written throughout their house,” said Woodward.

"You may send your message and donation to Habitat for Humanity PO Box 369 Smithville, TN 37166, drop it by Wilson Bank & Trust Smithville office or contact us on Facebook @HFHDeKalbTN for other options," he continued.

Woodward said construction work will begin as soon as possible.

“We have to do some general stuff that requires skilled labor but we are hoping probably by the middle of March to get volunteers in and start that part but we hope, depending on the weather, to have the foundation and footers done by the middle of March,” he said.

“The project will be completed by volunteers with the exceptions of the areas in which a licensed professional is required. Everyone is invited to help and jobs can be found for anyone. If you would like to volunteer, please email awoodward@wilsonbank.com and if you are skilled in a certain line of construction work please indicate that or you may call 615-215-8181 and leave a message for construction. Please include name, number, email address, and skill.

“We will also need volunteers to provide lunch on construction days, drinks, and snacks. Supplies are also needed such as hammers, tape measures, nail aprons, pencils and other building supplies are accepted. Monetary donations are needed as well to purchase construction materials. Supplies may be dropped off at Wilson Bank & Trust Smithville branch or mailed to Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb Co PO Box 750, Smithville, TN 37166,” said Woodward

“Additionally we encourage churches, employers, and other organizations to commit to a construction day, you may contact us at the email or phone number above. We appreciate your prayers and support for our upcoming project,” Woodward said.

About Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County, TN.
Habitat for Humanity of DeKalb County was formed in 2003. They have built five homes in the Smithville area and own property with plans to build future homes. Houses are constructed by volunteers and paid by donations from various fundraisers including the Fiddler 5K, Jackson Kayak Raffle, Golf Tournament, Yeti cooler raffle and the Chili cook off. The purpose of Habitat is to build houses and sell them at no profit and no interest to families who could not otherwise afford their own home. This Christian ministry is financed through private donations using volunteer labor and donated materials whenever possible.

Find us on Facebook @ HFHDeKalbTN to stay up-to-date on current events and construction updates.

Danny Hale Wins DeKalb GOP Nomination for Road Supervisor

February 11, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
DeKalb GOP Nominees for August 2 General Election: Sheriff Patrick Ray, Susan Martin for Circuit Court Clerk, Trustee Sean Driver, and Danny Hale for Road Supervisor
DeKalb GOP Nominees for County Commission: Matt Adcock in 6th district, Incumbent Jerry Adcock in 5th district, Renee Steff in 3rd district, Greg Matthews in 4th district, and Tom Chandler in 1st district. NOT PICTURED HERE Sabrina Farler in 2nd district, and Bruce Malone in 7th district
PHOTO FROM JANUARY PARTY MEET AND GREET: GOP candidates for County Commission: Matt Adcock (6th),Bruce Malone (7th),Incumbent Jerry Adcock (5th), Greg Matthews(4th) Sabrina Farler (2nd) Tom Chandler (1st)

Danny Hale of Liberty won the Republican nomination for DeKalb County Road Supervisor in the local GOP caucus held Sunday afternoon at the courthouse.

Hale, who was nominated by party delegates, defeated Reed Edge 62 to 34. The vote was conducted by paper ballot.

"I would like to thank everybody who participated today. I thank them for coming out and for their support. I'm looking forward to running a good race," Hale told WJLE after the meeting.

Hale will face Democrat Jimmy Sprague in the August 2nd DeKalb County General Election. Sprague is unopposed for the Democratic nomination for Road Supervisor in the May 1 DeKalb County Democratic Primary and although the qualifying deadline is not until Thursday, February 15 it’s too late for other Road Supervisor candidates to get qualified by the Tennessee Highway’s Certification Board. The filing deadline with the state board was February 1. Both Hale and Sprague are state certified.

Incumbent Republican Road Supervisor Wallace "Butch" Agee decided not to seek re-election to a second term.

All the other Republican candidates for the August 2 DeKalb County General Election were nominated by acclamation during the caucus Sunday including Incumbent Sheriff Patrick Ray, Incumbent Trustee Sean Driver, Susan Martin for Circuit Court Clerk, and County Commission candidates Tom Chandler in the 1st district, Sabrina Farler in the 2nd district, Renee Steff in the 3rd district, Greg Matthews in the 4th district, Incumbent Jerry Adcock in the 5th district, Matt Adcock in the 6th district, and Bruce Malone in the 7th district.

Incumbent 1st district Republican County Commissioner Mason Carter was not present for the caucus and will not be seeking re-election.

Democrats will soon get their turn.

The DeKalb County Democratic Party will hold a Mass Meeting for county and state Democratic candidates, Saturday, February 17 to kick off the election year. The event will take place at the DeKalb County High School cafeteria, beginning at 10:00 a.m.

Meet the candidates for Governor, US Senator, US Representative, State Senator, State Representative, County Mayor, Circuit Court Clerk, Road Supervisor, Sheriff, County Clerk, Register of Deeds, Trustee, County Commission, School Board, City Council.

Mary Mancini, Chair of the Tennessee Democratic Party, will be the keynote speaker.

Both candidates for Governor former Nashville Mayor Karl Dean & House Minority Leader Craig Fitzhugh will be in attendance along with former Governor Phil Bredesen now running for the United States Senate. Mary Alice Carfi candidate for State Senate will also be present.

The event will feature live music by Jake Hoot, coffee, donuts, and conversation

Two Sentenced in Multi-Agency Drug Bust

February 11, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
Amy Renee Ford
Courtney Paris

Two of five convicted felons arrested last summer after an undercover drug investigation by several local and state law enforcement agencies appeared for sentencing in DeKalb County Criminal Court Friday, February 9.

39 year old Amy Renee Ford of Watertown entered a plea by criminal information to introduction of contraband and unlawful possession of a firearm. She received a four year sentence on the contraband charge and two years for the firearm offense to run consecutively for a total of six years however the term has been suspended to supervised probation with 245 days of time served from June 9, 2017 to February 9, 2018. She must forfeit the weapon.

35 year old Courtney Paris of New Hope Road, Alexandria entered a plea by criminal information to possession of a schedule II drug for resale and possession of a firearm. She got a six year sentence for the drug offense and four years for the firearm charge to run concurrently for a total of six years however the term has been suspended to TDOC probation. She must forfeit the weapon. Paris was given jail credit from June 9, 2017 to February 9, 2018.

The cases against the other three defendants remain pending in court.

Sheriff Patrick Ray said that on Friday, June 9, 2017 agents went to 332 New Hope Road, Alexandria and seized approximately 5 grams of fentanyl, methodone, morphine, xanax, six weapons (including two assault rifles), a Chevy Silverado, a Dodge Dakota, a BMW car, cell phones, flash drives, home security system, digital scales, computer, ammo, and $973 cash.

Ford and Paris were arrested along with 36 year old Samer Walid Abdalla, 55 year old Ernest Grady Tanner, and 39 year old Jerry Henry Goff

The narcotics search warrant was executed and served at the residence by members of the 13th & 15th Judicial District Drug Task Force, the Drug Enforcement Agency, Alexandria Police Department, the Tennessee Highway Patrol Criminal Investigation Division, and the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department.

Adballa and Paris were in the master bedroom where agents found approximately 5 grams of a powder substance on a nightstand that tested positive for fentanyl; prescription narcotics which were packaged for resale, guns, three sets of digital scales, a large amount of hypodermic needles, and packaging material used in the distribution of narcotics.

Sheriff Ray said that Abdalla, who is Hepatitis C positive, fought with agents while resisting arrest and he tried to bite them. Abdalla also suffered a bloody nose during the scuffle putting the officers at risk of being infected. He was charged with criminal exposure of Hepatitis C. “Abdalla was ordered several times to raise his hands and to place them behind his back. He failed to comply, striking at agents and forcing them to restrain him to affect the arrest. Abdalla fought with the agents and tried to take an agent’s gun by grabbing the upper barrel portion of the rifle and pulling. Abdalla tried to bite two agents who were trying to restrain him. Abdalla was slightly injured and began bleeding from the nose. He continued to struggle knowing that he has Hepatitis C placing agents at risk of being infected. Abdalla acknowledged that he has Heptatis C and he has been charged with criminal exposure twice before,” said Sheriff Ray.

Abdalla was also charged with assaulting an officer and resisting arrest as he tried to keep agents from taking both Paris and himself into custody. Both Abdalla and Paris were each charged with possession with intent to sell or deliver a schedule II drug (fentanyl) and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony. Agents found a 9 millimeter pistol inside Paris’ pocketbook within reach of both Paris and Abdalla.

Sheriff Ray said Abdalla has numerous felonies on his record including two counts of possession of cocaine on May 25, 2004, criminal simulation on September 10, 2008, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony on May 7, 2012.

Paris was convicted for possession of a schedule II drug on November 16, 2011 and she has other felony convictions.

Tanner is charged with unlawful possession of a weapon. According to Sheriff Ray, Tanner was found in another bedroom of the home along with a Ruger mini-14 rifle, a DPMS-AR 15 rifle, a Springfield Armory .45 caliber 1911 semi-automatic pistol, and approximately 150 plus rounds of ammunition of various calibers. On October 7, 2005 Tanner was convicted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) for possession of a firearm by a person convicted of a misdemeanor domestic assault. Tanner was sentenced to 10 months in the U.S. penitentiary in McCreary, Kentucky.

Ford and Goff were in a guest bedroom of the home where agents recovered from a closet a Revelation. 22 caliber rifle with a bullet in the magazine but not chambered. Narcotics were discovered in a duffle bag that also held Goff’s driver license.

Both Ford and Goff were charged with unlawful possession of a weapon. Goff was further charged with possession of a schedule II drug with intent to sell or deliver.

The following day, Ford was charged with bringing contraband into a penal institution after drugs were found on her during a strip search. “Ford was being dressed out for housing at the jail and during a strip search by a female correctional officer, a small cellophane baggie with a clear crystal substance was found in her body cavity. It field tested positive for meth,” said Sheriff Ray.

According to Sheriff Ray, Ford is a convicted felon. She was sentenced to 8 years in the Tennessee Department of Corrections for initiation of methamphetamine in 2012.
Goff pled guilty to manufacturing meth on November 7, 2012.

In other cases, 21 year old Dylan Crook entered a plea to sale of methamphetamine over 0.5 grams and received an eight year sentence on TDOC probation after he serves 270 days in the DeKalb County Jail. The term is to run concurrently with a violation of probation sentence against him. Crook was fined $2,000 and he must make restitution of $200 to the Sheriff’s Department. Crook was given jail credit from November 13, 2017 to February 9, 2018.

48 year old Michael Lee Bailey entered a plea by criminal information to aggravated assault and received a six year sentence suspended to probation. He us under a restraining order to keep away from the victim.

(CLICK LINK BELOW FOR COMMUNITY CALENDAR, CHURCH NEWS, CLASSIFIEDS AND MORE)

http://www.wjle.com/community

Murfreesboro Man Dies in Motorcycle Crash

February 10, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page

A Murfreesboro man lost his life in a motorcycle crash Friday on Dale Ridge Road (State Route 96) near the Company Store location and not far from Center Hill Dam.

Dead is 46 year old Marcus Wade.

Trooper Sean Tramel of the Tennessee Highway Patrol told WJLE that Wade was operating a 1998 BMW motorcycle north on Dale Ridge Road when he failed to negotiate a curve and struck a rock embankment. Wade was transported by DeKalb EMS to St Thomas DeKalb Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Trooper Tramel was assisted by Troopers Jason Cobble and Danielle Neal.

Members of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department and Sheriff’s Department were also on the scene.

(CLICK LINK BELOW FOR COMMUNITY CALENDAR, CHURCH NEWS, CLASSIFIEDS AND MORE)

http://www.wjle.com/community

DCHS Basketball Teams to Begin District Tournament Play

February 9, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
DCHS Basketball Teams to Begin District Tournament Play
DCHS Basketball Teams to Begin Tournament Play

The DCHS Basketball teams will make their debut in the District 8 AA Tournament next week at Tennessee Tech in Cookeville.

The Tigers, the 6th seed, will take on Watertown, the 7th seed, on Tuesday night, February 13 at 7:30 p.m. The winner will meet Macon County, the 3rd seed, on Thursday, February 15 at 7:30 p.m.

Meanwhile the Lady Tigers, the 5th seed, will face Watertown, the 8th seed, on Wednesday night, February 14 at 6:00 p.m. The winner will meet Cannon County, the 4th seed, on Friday, February 16 at 6:00 p.m.

WJLE will have LIVE coverage.

(CLICK LINK BELOW FOR COMMUNITY CALENDAR, CHURCH NEWS, CLASSIFIEDS AND MORE)

http://www.wjle.com/community

Hill Gets 10 Year Prison Sentence for Aggravated Burglary

February 9, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
David Matthew Hill

A Smithville man charged in a burglary last April was sentenced in DeKalb County Criminal Court Friday, February 9

24 year old David Matthew Hill, originally charged with aggravated burglary (2 counts), burglary, and theft over $1,000 (2 counts), entered a plea to one count of aggravated burglary and received a 10 year sentence in the Tennessee Department of Correction to run concurrently with a 10 year Warren County sentence against him. He was given jail credit from April 15, 2017 to February 9, 2018. Hill must make restitution of $975 to the victim

Sheriff Patrick Ray said that on Friday, April 14, 2017 Hill allegedly broke into a residence and an outbuilding on Twilla Lane, Smithville and stole a lawnmower, a chainsaw, a weedeater, and a mini bike valued at more than $1,000. The victim discovered the break-in upon returning home and reported it to the sheriff’s department.

The following day on Saturday, April 15 Hill returned to the scene of the crime looking for his cell phone that he had lost during the burglary the day before. While there, Hill broke into the same residence again and stole property this time valued at $2,748. The victim returned home while Hill was still on the property and called the sheriff’s department. Officers responded and placed Hill under arrest.

36 year old Kennith Wayne Lattimore and 30 year old Brenda Lattimore each entered a plea to theft of property over $1,000 and received a sentence of two years suspended to supervised probation on judicial diversion. Each is jointly and severally responsible for making restitution of $1,452 to the victim, Walmart.

According to Smithville Police, the Lattimore’s and another man, 44 year old Gerald Kier entered Wal-Mart on Sunday, August 14, 2016 at approximately 1:00 a.m. and could be seen on video surveillance taking an estimated $3,794.12 in merchandise. They were arrested and found to be in possession of several stolen items from Wal-Mart including hunting bows, knives, and other various merchandise valued at over $500. Kier entered a plea by criminal information in October, 2016 to one count of theft over $500 and received a sentence of two years, all suspended to supervised probation. He was ordered to make restitution of $1,452 to Walmart and he was placed under a restraining order to keep away from the store.

Trustee Reminds Property Owners that 2017 Taxes are Due February 28

February 9, 2018
by: 
Dwayne Page
Trustee Sean Driver

The Trustee's Office is a busy place this month as property taxpayers rush to beat the deadline

Trustee Sean Driver said 2017 property taxes are due by February 28, 2018.

As of Friday, February 9, 61% has been collected of the $9.06 million in 2017 DeKalb County property taxes to be collected by February 28, 2018 which includes property, residential, commercial, personal, and public utility taxes.

Penalties will start accruing March 1 on 2017 taxes not paid by the February 28 deadline.

Driver reminds taxpayers that you may:

1. Come in person to pay at the office.

2. Mail in your payment.

3. Pay online at tennesseetrustee.org- select, DeKalb.

*There is a fee to use debit/credit card-2.75% of your total tax bill or submit an e-check for $2.75 on any total

*Online accepts Mastercard, Visa, Discover, or American Express.

*Business Information Systems collects the fees, not DeKalb County

4. A Dropbox is also located on the outside wall of the county offices section at the county complex building (where the Trustee's Office is located) for your convenience after hours or on weekends.

5. Partial Payments are accepted in any amount.

*Remember: Whatever portion of taxes are unpaid for 2017, using the partial payment plan; only the portion left unpaid will accrue 1.5% penalty and interest per month starting March 1, 2018.

You may also qualify for the State of Tennessee Property Tax Relief Program. If you would like to check on a possible tax relief for 2017, visit the Trustee’s Office at 732 South Congress Boulevard, Room 103, or call 615-597-5176. The last day to sign up for tax relief is April 5.

The Trustee's Office is open regular hours from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Monday- Friday.

Any 2016 unpaid property taxes may be paid with interest and penalty through March 31. However any 2016 unpaid taxes will be turned over to the Chancery Court on April 1 for collection. The Trustee's Office will soon be sending out a notice to those still delinquent.

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