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Grand Jury Indicts Dowelltown Man for Sexual Contact with 13 Year old Girl

July 25, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

The grand jury Monday returned a sealed indictment against 41 year old Bobby Lee Anderson of Old Mill Hill Road, Dowelltown charging him with sexual battery by an authority figure.

He is accused of having sexual contact with a 13 year old girl in May 2016.

Anderson was taken into custody Monday. His bond is $75,000 and he will be arraigned in criminal court on Monday, August 6.

The indictment alleges that during the month of May, 2016 Anderson unlawfully and intentionally or knowingly accomplished sexual contact with a 13 year old girl by use of parental or custodial authority over the victim in violation of state law.

Attorney Calls Charges Against Mayor Poss Political Indictment

July 24, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

Smithville Attorney Tony Hagan, who is representing Mayor Jimmy Poss and his son Tony Poss until their arraignment in criminal court on August 6 has issued a brief statement about the charges against the mayor.

Hagan calls the state’s charges of official misconduct and theft of property over $2,500 a political indictment and questions the timing with Mayor Poss up for re-election next week.

“Jimmy Poss is a beloved and valuable member of this community. Current mayor and former member of the county commission, Jimmy’s election is about a week away and this smells to high heaven. If the state had anything why did they wait until a week before the election to accuse Jimmy. Jimmy proclaims from the highest mountain his innocence. This is purely a political indictment and absolutely outrageous,” said Hagan.

Smithville Mayor Indicted for Official Misconduct and Theft, Mayor’s Son Also Indicted

July 24, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

A move by Smithville Mayor Jimmy Poss to put his son Tony Poss on the city payroll last fall without the approval of the aldermen has resulted in a Grand Jury Indictment against both of them.

During the first day of the new term Monday, the DeKalb County Grand Jury returned a sealed indictment against Mayor Poss for Official Misconduct and Theft of Property over $2,500. His son, Tony Poss was also named in the sealed indictment for Theft of Property over $2,500.

They were served with the indictments Tuesday morning. Mayor Poss is under a $5,000 bond. Tony Poss’ bond is $2,500. Both will be arraigned in DeKalb County Criminal Court August 6.

The first count of the indictment alleges that “between the dates of September 1, 2017 and March 2, 2018 Jimmy Wayne Poss did unlawfully and knowingly, while acting as a public servant, commit an offense with intent to obtain a benefit by authorizing the unlawful payment of wages to Anthony Wayne Poss in violation of (state law).”

The second count of the indictment alleges that “between the dates of September 1, 2017 and March 2, 2018 Jimmy Wayne Poss and Anthony Wayne Poss did unlawfully and knowingly obtain or exercise control over property, including but not limited to: cash valued at over $2,500, belonging to the City of Smithville with the intent to deprive the owner thereof and without the owner’s effective consent, in violation of (state law)”.

The cases were presented to the grand jury by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation who began a probe after the issue surfaced in March.

Last September, Tony Poss was put on the city payroll to work at the golf course and swimming pool but the aldermen said Mayor Poss violated the city’s hiring and nepotism policies in hiring Tony without their approval.

City records show that from September 1, 2017 to March 2, 2018 Tony earned $300 per week (gross) for a total of $8,100. When the issue came to light on March 5, Tony’s employment with the city ended.

Although Tony was supposedly hired to mow the grass at the golf course, Mayor Poss admitted at the March 5 city council meeting that he (Tony) actually did other things.

“We had a problem and what he (Tony) has done, he has taken care of that golf course with what Riverwatch wasn’t doing. He (Tony) has protected us from freezing up. The pool was running low with no water being put in it. It wasn’t being maintained by the city and that wasn’t Ken’s deal (Ken Lacy of Riverwatch). This is what Tony did. He took care of the city’s property. Now it wasn’t mowing. That’s an error there,” explained Mayor Poss.

The aldermen were not satisfied with the mayor’s explanation and questioned whether Tony actually did any work to earn his salary.

Later during a special meeting in March, the aldermen formally censured the mayor for his actions. The move was basically a reprimand or expression of disapproval. The vote was 5-0.

In a separate move the aldermen considered asking the mayor to reimburse the city for the salary paid to Tony during the six month period he was a part time employee but voted 3 to 2 against it. Aldermen Gayla Hendrix and Shawn Jacobs voted in favor but Aldermen Jason Murphy, Josh Miller, and Danny Washer voted no. Had it been approved, the aldermen admitted that a reimbursement request probably could not have been enforced.

Prior to the censure vote, Vice Mayor Jason Murphy, who presided over the meeting in the absence of Mayor Poss, recognized City Attorney Vester Parsley who read a prepared statement from the mayor explaining his actions in putting Tony to work at the golf course and swimming pool during the fall and winter.

“My hiring of my son to maintain the pool and equipment at the golf course has become an issue because of our charter and city ordinances. I want the council and the public to understand that my only goal was to safeguard and maintain the equipment located at the golf course. I want to assure you that it wasn’t a waste of the city’s funds because the equipment must be maintained and my son was the most logical choice. In hindsight, his hiring without council approving may have been a mistake. I have, however, hired other part time employees without the approval of the council in the past and at the time felt it was not necessary to seek the council’s approval,” wrote Mayor Poss.

Tony Poss had a ten year lease of the city’s golf course and swimming pool but he surrendered his lease of the facilities in August, 2017. The following month, the city entered into a one year contract with Riverwatch Golf & Resort to upgrade and maintain the golf course at a cost to the city of $74,115. It was also in September that Tony Poss became a part time city employee.

“We hired Riverwatch to repair and maintain the golf course at a substantial amount of money. Tony Poss had terminated his lease with the city. I don’t think his services were needed and we have no proof that anything had actually been done (by Tony) to earn the money that was paid out,” said Alderman Hendrix prior to the censure vote in March.

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