Local News Articles

Final Slate Of Candidates Set For DTC Election Of Directors

August 3, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The final slate of candidates is set for DTC Communications? election of directors next month.

Directors will be elected in three exchanges, including the Alexandria (529), Liberty (536), and Smithville (215/597) exchanges.

Incumbents Bennie Curtis and Randy Campbell are running unopposed in the Alexandria and Liberty exchanges, respectively.

The Smithville exchange is represented by four candidates: Incumbent Paul Cantrell and three who qualified by petition - Freddy N. Colvert, Ronald Garrison, and Vester Parsley, Jr.

Voting for directors will take place at the cooperative?s annual meeting on Saturday, Sept. 16 and during early voting Monday-Wednesday, Sept. 11-13.

Thursday, Sept. 7, will be the last day to make changes to your membership for the 2006 election.

Only DTC members may vote, and each member must present identification. For a single membership, only that individual may vote. Either member of a joint membership may vote, but not both. In the case of a business membership, a business affidavit is required.

The early voting schedule and locations are as follows:
Early Voting Hours: Monday, Sept. 11 ? Noon to 7 p.m.,Tuesday, Sept. 12 ? Noon to 7 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 13 ? 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Early Voting Locations: Kenneth Sandlin Building, DeKalb County Fairgrounds, Alexandria, Gordonsville Clinic/DTC Conference Room, 126 JMZ Drive, Gordonsville, DeKalb County Courthouse, Room 100, 1 Public Square, Smithville, DTC Training Center (formerly Woodbury phone store), located beside the DTC Customer Service Center, Woodbury

On Saturday, Sept. 16, gates to the DeKalb County Fairgrounds in Alexandria will open at 11:45 a.m., with voting from noon until 4 p.m. The business meeting will begin at 4 p.m. or once the last person in line at that time has voted.

For additional guidelines regarding membership and voting, refer to the by-laws section of any DTC phone directory, or call DTC at 615-529-2955.

Rochelle Carries DeKalb In State Senate Primary Race

August 3, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

Former State Senator Bob Rochelle beat Aubrey T. Givens in a primary battle Thursday for the right to take on Republican Incumbent Senator Mae Beavers in November.

In DeKalb County Rochelle won 877(54%) to 734 (45%)

Beavers, who ran unopposed for the GOP nomination, received 819 complimentary votes in DeKalb County.

Rochelle carried the following DeKalb County precincts: Alexandria- 66 to 60, Edgar Evins State Park- 7 to 2, Dowelltown- 29 to 21, Courthouse 67 to 57, Johnson's Chapel- 17 to 14, Blue Springs- 25 to 23, and Early Voting 376 to 235. Rochelle had 18 absentees.

Givens carried the following DeKalb County precincts: Temperance Hall- 26 to 21, Liberty- 22 to 16, Snow Hill- 22 to 18, Middle School 60 to 58, Cherry Hill 7 to 6, Rock Castle 9 to 8, Elementary School- 55 to 53, Keltonburg- 33 to 24, and Church of Christ Annex 54 to 43. Givens had 9 absentees.

Rochelle and Givens tied at 25 each at Belk.

Meanwhile, Democratic State Representative Frank Buck, who ran unopposed in the primary Thursday, received 1,784 complimentary votes in DeKalb County while his November challenger, Republican Terri Lynn Weaver, got 629 complimentary DeKalb County votes. She was unopposed in the GOP Primary.

In other races, 6th District Democratic Congressman Bart Gordon defeated his primary challenger J. Patrick Lyons on Thursday.

Gordon received 1,969 DeKalb County votes to 151 for Lyons.

Republican David R. Davis, who was unopposed in the GOP primary, received 554 votes here. Davis will face Gordon in the November General Election.

In the U.S. Senate Primaries, DeKalb County voters choose Harold Ford, Jr. as the their favorite Democrat and Bob Corker as their favorite Republican.

In DeKalb County Ford received, 1,346 votes followed by Gary G. Davis with 221 votes, John Jay Hooker with 189, Charles E. Smith with 70, and Al Strauss with 27 votes.

In the GOP primary, Corker got 476 DeKalb County votes, followed by Ed Bryant with 303, Van Hilleary with 261, and Tate Harrison with 10.

Corker and Ford will square off in the November General Election. The winner will succeed Incumbent Republican U.S. Senator Bill Frist, who did not seek re-election.

In the Governor primary races, Democratic Incumbent Phil Bredesen received 1,755 DeKalb County votes followed by John Jay Hooker with 207, Tim Sevier with 111, and Walt Ward with 27.

In the Republican primary for Governor, Jim Bryson received 357 DeKalb County votes followed by David M. Farmer with 80, Joe Kirkpatrick with 58, Wayne Thomas Bailey with 49, Mark Albertini with 47, Wayne Young 25, and Timothy Thomas with 20.

Bryson will try to unseat Bredesen in the November General Election.

Patrick Ray Elected DeKalb County Sheriff

August 3, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The next Sheriff of DeKalb County will be Patrick Ray.

Ray, a Republican, defeated Democratic nominee Myron Rhody in Thursday's DeKalb County General Election by a final count of 2,584 (54%) to 2,159 (45%), a difference of 425 votes.

Ray carried eleven of the sixteen precincts in DeKalb County including Alexandria- 175 to 108, Temperance Hall- 64 to 54, Edgar Evins State Park- 15 to 12, Liberty- 119 to 49, Dowelltown 76 to 54, Cherry Hill- 30 to 11, Courthouse -134 to 131, Johnson's Chapel- 89 to 33, Elementary School- 128 to 123, Blue Springs- 89 to 74, Church of Christ Annex- 163 to 137, and Early Voting- 1,053 to 846. Ray had 43 absentees.

Rhody carried five precincts including Snow Hill- 88 to 82, Middle School 192 to 162, Rock Castle 23 to 22, Belk 75 to 70, and Keltonburg 86 to 70. Rhody had 63 absentees.

Ray, a Chief Deputy under the administration of former Sheriff Kenneth Pack, will succeed incumbent Sheriff Lloyd Emmons on September 1st. Ray currently works for the Warren County Sheriff's Department.

District Returns Give Patterson Six Vote Edge Over Sells In Judge Race

August 4, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

Uncertified election returns from all seven counties in the 13th Judicial District show that David Patterson has edged Incumbent Criminal Court Judge Lillie Ann Sells by six votes out of over 40,000 votes cast district wide.

Totals show Patterson with 20,102 votes and Sells has 20,096.

The following are the uncertified results from each county as provided to WJLE Friday morning by each county election commission

DeKalb: Sells- 1,822, Patterson- 1,234
Putnam: Patterson- 7,608, Sells- 4,152
Overton: Sells- 2,791, Patterson- 2,213
White: Sells- 3,465, Patterson- 2,436
Clay: Sells -1,216, Patterson- 749
Pickett: Sells- 1,346, Patterson 867
Cumberland: Sells- 5,304, Patterson- 4,995.

Thurman Elected Chancellor In 13th Judicial District

August 4, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

Democrat Ron Thurman carried five of the seven counties in the 13th Judicial District Thursday and defeated Republican Jerry Burgess in the race for Chancellor, succeeding the retiring Vernon Neal.

Thurman received a total of 20,922 votes to 13,373 votes for Burgess.

Thurman carried DeKalb County 1,388 to 976; White County 3,276 to 1,954; Putnam County 7,552 to 3,422; Clay County 439 to 290; and Overton County 3,024 to 1,109.

Burgess carried Cumberland County 4,693 to 4,370 and Pickett County 929 to 873.

Johnson Gets Life Prison Sentence In First Degree Murder Case

August 7, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

33 year old Michael E. Johnson of Sparta, charged in the fatal shooting of another Sparta man in January, appeared in DeKalb County Criminal Court Monday and entered a guilty plea to first degree murder. Judge Leon Burns,Jr. gave him a life prison sentence under a negotiated settlement with state prosecutors.

Johnson appeared before Judge Lillie Ann Sells last month to enter the plea, but when she learned that Johnson had previously been treated for a mental condition and was no longer under a doctor's care or taking medication, she refused to accept a plea and instead ordered Johnson to undergo a mental evaluation at Plateau Mental Health Center in Cookeville to determine his competency to stand trial or enter a plea in the case.

Johnson underwent the evaluation later and was found to be competent.

Johnson and a co-defendant, 26 year old Tina Rose Bain, were each indicted by a DeKalb County Grand Jury in April on charges of first degree murder, attempted first degree murder, felony murder, and theft over $1,000.

Under the agreement, the other three counts against Johnson were dismissed upon his plea to the first degree murder charge.

Johnson and Bain were charged in the shooting death of 21 year old David Anthony Welch of Sparta and the wounding of 23 year old Heather Trapp of Smithville. Both Welch and Trapp were shot at Trapp's home during the pre-dawn hours of January 6th on Webb Lane.

The indictments allege that the defendants did unlawfully, intentionally and with premeditation kill Welch during the perpetration of or an attempt to perpetrate theft and that they unlawfully and knowingly obtained or exercised control over property including, but not limited to, a necklace and ring valued at over $1,000 belonging to Trapp.

After the shooting, Johnson and Bain left the scene in their car but were arrested later that day in White County. They were brought to the DeKalb County Jail and after several hours of questioning, were charged in the shooting. Their car was also impounded.

Bain's case is still pending in court.

Johnson is represented by attorney J. Hilton Conger. John Pryor is Bain's lawyer

Grand Jury Returns Indictments Against Thirty Eight

August 17, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

A total of thirty eight people were indicted by the DeKalb County Grand Jury Monday including seven named in sealed indictments.

Those indicted will appear for arraignment in DeKalb County Criminal Court on Monday, August 21st at 9:00 a.m.

Those indicted and their charges are as follows:

Ruthie J. Shoemake- prescription Fraud

Bradley Kent Colter- driving while revoked (6th offense)

Clinton Jerome Maples- worthless check (3 counts)

Terry Wayne Knowles- Two charges of driving while revoked (9th offense)

Sonny Gene Smith-criminal trespassing

Samuel Wade Walker- theft over $10,000, burglary (2 counts), sale of a schedule II controlled substance and delivery of a schedule II controlled substance

Gary E. Woodard- driving while revoked (6th offense)

Terry Brandon Maynard-prescription fraud

Kathy Ann Taylor-reckless endangerment and violation of the implied consent law

Anna Lou Adams- possession of a schedule II controlled substance for sale and delivery and possession of paraphernalia

Ana Soto- no drivers license and violation of the financial responsibility law

Natasha A. Helms- reckless endangerment and possession of paraphernalia

Aubrey L. Kilgore- driving under the influence (3rd offense) and violation of the open container law

Harold Bain- driving under the influence, violation of the implied consent law, and reckless endangerment

Elizabeth Ann Chalfant- driving while suspended

Sammy Gene Taylor and Royce Avon Foster- burglary, possession of burglary tools, and evading arrest (2 counts)

Azucena Abraham- speeding 65/45, violation of the financial responsibility law, violation of the seat belt law, and no drivers license

Robert Ernest Rochefort- evading arrest with a motor vehicle, simple possession of a schedule VI controlled substance, simple possession of a schedule III controlled substance, and driving while revoked.

Daniel Lloyd Billings- driving under the influence (2nd offense), violation of the implied consent law, possession of paraphernalia, violation of the financial responsibility law, and violation of the seat belt law.

Brian B. Roberts- domestic assault, evading arrest, and resisting arrest

Terry Layne Pedigo- driving under the influence, violation of the implied consent law, and resisting arrest

Martin Riley- possession of drug paraphernalia

Marilyn Elaine Strayn- possession of paraphernalia and theft under $500

Jackie Eston Trapp- violation of an order of protection and vandalism over $1,000

Sonny Gene Smith and Perry Alton Stembridge- theft over $500

Edward Lynn Taylor- driving while revoked (3rd offense)

Clinton Jerome Maples- worthless check (2 counts)

Jacqueline E. Schultz- driving while suspended

Blake Ardell Richardson- illegal consumption of alcohol

Kevin Dewayne Eldridge- aggravated assault

Audrey Kay Ledbetter- simple possession of a schedule II and simple possession of a schedule IV controlled substance.

Judge Sells To Contest Election

August 7, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

It appears Criminal Court Judge Lillie Ann Sells, the apparent loser in her re-election bid last Thursday, is not going down without a fight...a court fight!

The Herald-Citizen of Cookeville is reporting that Judge Sells has confirmed that she is planning to file a lawsuit contesting the results of the election.

Final totals district-wide gave her opponent David A. Patterson, an Independent candidate, nine more votes than she received out of more than 40,000 votes cast.

After the votes were counted district wide on Thursday night, Patterson had a six vote lead over Sells, 20,102 to 20,096 but on Friday when the \"provisional\" ballots were examined in the counties that had them, Patterson had picked up four more votes to one additional vote for Sells increasing Patterson's lead to nine votes.

The count, apparently as it stands now, is 20,106 for Patterson and 20,097 for Sells

Patterson currently serves as an Assistant District Attorney in the Office of Attorney General William A. \" Bill\" Gibson of Cookeville.

According to the Herald Citizen report, Judge Sells said Monday that \"she is working with a Nashville attorney in planning a suit seeking a review of the election results. Such a review could result in a recount of the votes.\"

The report says \"State law allows for a court filing to contest election results, and that would be filed in Chancery Court and reportedly would have to allege some specific reason for seeking a recount.\"

City Board Votes To Remove Three Speed Humps On West Main Street

August 7, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The three speed humps on West Main Street between Juniper Lane and the four way stop at North Mountain Street will soon be gone.

The Smithville Board of Aldermen Monday night voted to remove them, apparently bowing to public pressure.

Aldermen Stephen White, W.J. \"Dub\" White, and Cecil Burger voted for the removal of the speed humps. Aldermen Paul Young and Aaron Meeks \"passed\" when their names were called to vote on the issue.

The city board, earlier this year at the request of several residents in the area, voted to install the speed humps as a pilot project, but since they were put down most of the aldermen say they have heard nothing but complaints from the public, who often travel the street going to and from the downtown business district.

Residents in the neighborhood, including Bert Driver, Ruth Johns, and others, told the Mayor and Aldermen Monday night that the speed humps have been very effective in slowing traffic on a street where speeding has been a problem and the posted speed limit is 15 miles per hour. They asked that the speed humps not be removed.

Two Smithville residents, who don't live on West Main Street, but who own property in town, expressed opposing views on the issue during the meeting Monday night.

William McKinley Jones spoke out against the speed humps, but former Smithville Mayor Waniford Cantrell said he thought the speed humps should be kept there and asked that another one be installed on the east side of the West Main Street bridge.

Mary McCoy presented a petition to the Aldermen, signed by several residents in the Smith Road area, asking that speed humps be installed on their street because of the speeding problem on that narrow and winding road.

However rather than put down more speed humps, city officials are searching for alternative solutions and Monday night Smithville Police Chief Gus Clemente and the department's new Public Information Officer Tom Stufano pledged a stepped up enforcement campaign on streets with the most problems with speeding.

Yet some question how effective the extra patrols can be with only two to three officers on duty per shift.

TBI Arrests Former Sheriff's Deputy For Rape

August 9, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has arrested a former Dekalb County Sheriff?s deputy on a host of charges including rape.

David Stanley Sharp was charged Monday by the DeKalb County Grand Jury, in sealed indictments, on two counts of rape, two counts of official misconduct, one count of sexual battery and one count of official oppression.

The TBI began investigating Sharp in June after two women came forward complaining that he had pulled them over and demanded sexual favors. Sharp has posted a $10,000 bond.

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