The case of Garieon Simmons was bound to the Rutherford County Grand Jury yesterday. He is the man accused of taking a vehicle from Coffee County Funeral Chapel and leading law enforcement on a high speed chase into Rutherford County. He is charged with driving into a vehicle and killing a young Rutherford County woman. Rutherford County deputies testified that they had to jump out of the way when they were trying to place speed sticks across the roadway to try and stop him. He still faces charges here in Coffee County.
On Tuesday (July 26) the Coffee County Sheriff’s Department began the process of installing stickers on the back of patrol cars. The stickers say “In God WeTrust”, and deputies are very proud to display the statement on their vehicles. Sheriff Steve Graves says that this has been something his department has been wanting to do for around a year. Graves says, “We wanted to do this without using taxpayer money, and that has now been accomplished.” The sheriff added that installing “In God We Trust” stickers has been a movement within the law enforcement community, and he is proud that the Coffee County Sheriff’s Department has joined the groups displaying the statement.
Early voting is continuing in the county and voting is taking place at the election commission located at the Administrative Plaza in Manchester and at the C.D. Stamps building on South Jackson Street here in Tullahoma. The final day to take part in the early voting is this Saturday. As of Monday afternoon, there had been 1,467 early ballots cast, according to the State Secretary of States web site. Also statistics show that 72 percent of those voting have declared themselves as republicans.
To help veterans who have had a problem with the justice system, Coffee County will initiate a new veterans treatment court program soon. The program will be an addition to other recovery programs, such as the mental health and the drug court programs. Judge Craig Johnson will preside over the veterans treatment court, beginning in August. The judge said that after he, the attorney general office, a public defender and some of the mentors complete the necessary training in early September, they will start the program. The program will help men and women who have served in the military. Judge Johnson said that they dont necessarily need to have a service-related disability. To qualify for the treatment, people need to have served or serve in the military and have problems in the criminal justice system due to addictions or mental health issues, explained Johnson. The program will be geared mostly toward nonviolent offenders.
– From our news partners at the Tullahoma News –
A rapid response this week by the Franklin County Sheriff’s department, Cowan firemen and CSX personnel to an incident in the Cowan tunnel may have averted a much worse-case scenario.Chuck Stines, with the Franklin County Sheriff’s department, said a train going through the tunnel “went into emergency mode and caused the train to come uncoupled and it lost communication with a helper engine located in the middle of the train.”
Area law enforcement were searching for a missing female on Monday. Kelsey Feck, age 20 was last seen in Shelbyville around 9pm Saturday night (July 23).
Kelsey was found safe last night (Monday). The family thanks the public and area law enforcement for their help.
The Coffee County Drug Court program is continuing to grow with its largest number of graduates since the initiative began more than a decade ago.
Coffee County Mayor Gary Cordell says 17 participants graduated earlier this month.
Drug court is a two-year treatment program for nonviolence offenders living in Coffee County whose current offense is a result of illegal drug use.
Cordell says the program’s success can be measured by those who remain drug-free after completing the program.
He says Coffee County has had an 11 percent re-offense rate for those originally arrested on drug charges in the past five years, well below the national level.
A man escaped from Moccasin Bend Mental Hospital in Chattanooga on Saturday. Chattanooga police said 33-year-old Brandon Robinson was on a law enforcement hold out of Bedford County with the Shelbyville Police Department.
Robinson was captured on Sunday morning in Monteagle, according to the Grundy County Sheriff’s Office.
Officers responded to a call at McDonalds after a person reported someone had stolen their order straight off the counter. When officers arrived they encountered Robinson in the parking lot in a stolen vehicle. A struggle ensued and Robinson was taken into custody. (Story from WRCB TV)
Gas prices are falling at a consistency not seen in nearly two years. On Sunday the average price in Tennessee fell for the 46th day in a row, for a total discount of 27 cents. These are the longest streaks of decline seen at the pump since the period of October 2014 to January 2015, when prices fell 120 consecutive days, According to a spokesman for the AAA – The Auto Club Group “Gas prices are dropping due to abundant fuel supplies and declining crude oil costs. Average prices are 57 cents less than a year ago, and that’s motivating millions of Americans to take advantage of cheaper gas to take road trips this summer.”
The state average for regular unleaded dipped below the $2 a gallon threshold in Tennessee on July 15. According to the web site Gas Buddy, the lowest price for a gallon of gas in Tullahoma is $1.77 and in Manchester it’s $1.75.
People have called the Better Business Bureau to report letters they received claiming that they are owed money by the State of Tennessee.
The letters are in fact legitimate. Every year when the Department of Treasury gets a list of new unclaimed property, the department sends out letters to the last known address of the person who is the owner of the property.
“The letters that went out are the first steps,” spokeswoman Shelli King said. “We send these letters out to the last known address we have on file.”
Even though it is called unclaimed “property,” it is actually money. It can be utility deposits, investment revenue, or a number of other payments owed to Tennesseans that the company who owed the money could not return.
So far, 75,000 letters have gone out and about 150,000 more letters are going to go out to people.
It can be difficult to find the rightful owners because sometimes they have passed away or moved without leaving a forwarding address.
“These letters may not get to everyone they are intended to,” King said. “So we take the social security number if we have it and match it to employment records.”
She continued, “An individual could be called by their employer and be told you have unclaimed property with the Tennessee Department of the Treasury.”