2012 In Review

Children removed from a home 1805 Kefauver St in Manchester. Jeremy and Pamela Neal were charged with child abuse, neglect and endangerment. Human and animal waste along with garbage and various debris was found throughout the Manchester home. Manchester Investigator Butch Stewart told WMSR News that this was worse condition he and the other officers had ever seen.

Demolition crew set a charge Jan. 30th that took down the old Duck River Bridge on Hwy 41. The “Big Green Bridge” is no more. The new bridge is call Veterans Bridge

Bonnaroo announced the reunited Beach Boys were coming to Manchester. The 2012 Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival will feature Radiohead, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Phish and Bon Iver.

Denver C. Cole, 40, of Tullahoma, Tenn., pleaded guilty in February in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee at Chattanooga, to receipt of child pornography in interstate commerce by means of a computer.

Meagan Ann McGuinn age 19 of Tullahoma was found murdered. Thomas Edward Allen was charged with 1st degree murder.

A number of area residents were woke up March 13 to be greeted by law enforcement officers who had indictments from the March term of the grand jury. Those persons were arrested and placed in the Coffee County Jail.
Those arrested were for crack cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamines, the sell of prescription drugs, TennCare fraud and weapons charges.

A Tullahoma man has been arrested in March and charged with the abuse of his mother.
Brian Jeffrey Osborn, 28, of East Grundy Street was charged with physical abuse/gross negligence and was booked into the Coffee County Jail.

The Coffee County School Board decided in March to offer the job of director of schools to Dr. LaDonna McFall. The board by a vote of 6-1 approved to make the position available to McFall.

WMSR Citizen of the Year story: A multi-state burglary ring was broken up and thousands of dollars worth of stolen items recovered Tuesday at a Manchester motel, according to Coffee County sheriff’s investigators.
According to sheriff’s investigator Sgt. Danny Ferrell, the break came when a Manchester resident reported that his iPad had been stolen during a burglary and that his 8-year-old son Landon Crabtree knew how to trace it through the iPad’s security tracking system. The young Crabtree later appeared on the NBC Today Show.

Thomas “TJ” Greenwood of Tullahoma was found guilty of 1st degree murder March 29th in Manchester. Greenwood faced accusations after the death of 2-year-old child, Hayden Gage West, on March 9, 2010. Greenwood was babysitting the child at the time. He was later sentenced to life in prison.

In early April a 20-year-old Manchester man was arrested for the rape of a nursing home patient. Anthony Heartsell a patient of a nursing home on Powers Bridge Road in Manchester was accused of raping a wheelchair bound patient at the home.

After re-districting Coffee County now falls in 6th Congressional district with the seat now held by Republican Diane Black. Coffee County’s old 4th District is currently held by Republican Congressman Dr. Scott Desjarlais.

A father of three was killed during a family bicycle ride along a rural Manchester road on April 12.

A McMinnville man was arrested on charges of rape.
19 year old Austin Brown was arrested for allegedly raping a 16 year old girl at Hills Chapel Apartments in Manchester.

A Tullahoma man from East Coffee Street has been charged with statutory rape after allegations surfaced regarding him and a 17 year old. According to a report by Tullahoma Police Officer Daryn Gadeken, Craig Patrick Barabas, 37, of East Coffee Street was charged.

Dr. Dan Lawson announced in May that he will leave as director of the Tullahoma City Schools. Lawson has been in charge for the past 15 years.

Many, many church burglaries reported in Coffee County.

Most viewed website story: Mike Thompson owner of Thompson Ford in Tullahoma died May 6 in a swimming accident at a home in Coffee County. Apparently Thompson dove into a pool at a resident on Fairview School Rd and did not come back up.

Well known Manchester businessman Marlin Hoover was transported to Erlanger Medical Center Friday after him and his wife, Kim, were involved in an accident on Highway 41 near Betsy Willis Road intersection.

Kimberly Ann Mullins, 37, who was indicted in 2011 for the theft of over $60,000 from the Coffee County Fair Association, was in court in May. Mullins pleaded guilty to the charge and agreed to pay back $165,000. She was later ordered to serve six months under house arrest.

An Indian Bat delayed the building of the new Coffee County Jail. Money for the new jail was approved to not exceed $22(M) in 2012.

The City of Manchester’s rehabilitated and expanded wastewater treatment plant held an open house in May.
The project cost $14,303,000 and received funding from all different sources – including $5 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment (stimulus) money.

Dollar General added a 6th store to Coffee County. This time the store would be built in Summitville.

A woman accused of embezzling more than $60,000 from her employer entered a guilty plea in Coffee County Circuit Court. 60-year-old Carolyn Bell Jones West Doak in Manchester pled from taking the money from Vickers Concrete Reinforcing, Inc. between 2004 and 2011 while she was working as the company’s bookkeeper.

The family of Leo Paul Massicotte III began offering a reward to locate the Manchester man who has been missing since July 3, 2011. The man remains missing.

Charlie Jones age 58, of Manchester passed away May 30th at Vanderbilt Medical Center. Jones was a sergeant with the Coffee County Sheriff’s Department. Charlie was employed by the department for 23 years.

Hunter Jay Kimbrough an 18-year old Manchester resident lost his life June 1st in a single vehicle crash on Rock Creek Road.

The Dollar General store was robbed in Hillsboro on June 6. Akeem Forman, 22 was later arrested.

With nearly 100,000 people in attendance Bonnaroo kicked off in Manchester on June 7. After the event police announced 335 people at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival have been issued citations for various charges and over 40 people were arrested.

Dr Prater Powell in June decided to retire from his position as director of Manchester City Schools effective June of 2013. Dr Keith Brewer was hired to replace Powell.

Coffee County Animal Control worker got in hot water for allegedly shooting and killing a dog.
According to Brian Pennington who was the dog’s owner, his black 16 year-old Labrador retriever, “Toby,” was picked up by Coffee County Animal Control Monday afternoon and was apparently shot by worker Charlie Brown. A few days later animal rights activists from Coffee and surrounding counties were in Manchester to protest.

A 27-year-old Manchester man was arrested in June on charges of rape and incest.
Jeffery Stephen Ricco of Expressway Dr. Manchester was arrested for allegedly having sex with a relative who was under 13-years-old at the time of the incident.

Chandler Lawson won Miss Tennessee 2012 in June and will be competing in the Miss America pageant this month.

Middle Tennessee summers are always hot, but this year was one for the record books. Between late June and early July, the average daily temperature was 104 degrees. June 29 was the hottest day ever recorded in Nashville, with a temperature of 109.

The body of Tullahoma resident Erika Megan Sharpton was found burning on the side of Awalt Rd in Franklin County. Her death was ruled a homicide and detectives said reports indicated that Sharpton died of blunt force trauma.

People in Coffee County were saddened on July 15 as news broke that Coffee County High School Resource Officer Dale Goodwin had passed away. Goodwin apparently had surgery recently and had some type of complication and passed away.

Matthew Perkins of Tullahoma pled guilty of killing a mother and her two children on Monday in Coffee County court. Perkins pled guilty of the murders of 26-year-old Stephanie Hershman, and her sons, three-year-old Jathan and one-year-old Jaylon in September 2010. He was sentenced to three counts of life without parole.

An argument allegedly over a $25 debt has left one Grundy County man dead of multiple gunshot wounds. Kurt Brewer, 31 was charged with first-degree murder.

A major change occurred in August. Manchester citizens elected a new mayor and 3 new aldermen. Lonnie Norman was selected to be the mayor with 745 votes, Claude Morse finished 2nd, incumbent Mayor Betty Superstein came in 3rd with Stella McWhorter in 4th.
For alderman Tim Pauley was tops in votes with 972. Incumbent Ryan French will continue to be in his seat. Russell Bryan gets to serve 4 years. Cheryl Swan won a seat for 2 years and incumbent Roxanne Patton will see 2 more years.

A Gentry Street resident made a startling discovery when he returned to his Tullahoma in early August. William Frye of Gentry Street found a Normandy woman dead in his swimming pool.

A portion of the National Guard’s 1175th Transportation Company in Tullahoma were deployed to Afghanistan.

Longtime Manchester police Chief Ross Simmons who later became safety commissioner and Captain Wilma Thomas retired. Mark Yother was later named police chief and Charlie Taylor was named fire chief.

A two-car crash on I-24 left two people from Manchester dead.
A 2005 Chrysler Sebring driven by Carlean R Ramcharran, 36 of Expressway Dr. in Manchester was traveling westbound in the eastbound lanes of I-24. Vehicle two a 1998 Plymouth van driven by Christopher C Pack, 36 of Gruett Rd of Manchester was traveling east in the eastbound fast lane of I-24.
Ramcharran’s vehicle struck Pack’s van head on causing both vehicles to rotate clockwise coming to rest on the interstate.
Both drivers were pronounced dead on scene.

Longtime Manchester fireman who was serving as assistant fire chief Rod Ballard passed away from cancer.

Four runaway juveniles from Manchester were taken into custody August 28. The four teenagers allegedly ran away from Coffee County High School the day before.
After leading law enforcement in Coffee and Franklin Counties around the area of Pelham and Roarks Cove area of Franklin County they then ended up on Dean’s Shop Road in Franklin County and then back into Coffee County where they were taken into custody.

An Hispanic festival at St. Mark’s Catholic Church in Manchester Sunday resulted in an accident.
According to information that investigators gathered at the church, each year during the festival, people climb an old utility pole. The pole fell and landed on Mary Morales, 31, who was taking pictures of the activities. She suffered severe injuries.

In late September one teenager is died and a second one was taken to Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville after a single vehicle crash. According to police a Jeep operated by Nathaniel Beasley hit a tree in a field on Hwy 130 killing Tyrin Rippy age 15 of Tullahoma.

Two people in their 70s died in a house fire in Bedford County. Two children under the age of 10 were also thought to have died in a house fire. Police later said they did not and are still considered to be missing.

Several thousand “Warrior Dash” enthusiasts made their way to Manchester in September for the 2nd year in a row.

A former corrections officer at the Coffee County Jail has been ordered to serve eight years in prison. 53-year-old Susan Winters entered a plea of guilty to charges of bribery of a public official, possession of Schedule II, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

37 years old Donnie Jones of Bel Aire Drive, Tullahoma was arrested after authorities found a gun during a search of his residence by Franklin County deputies and Tullahoma Police investigators.

Old Timers Day returned to Manchester. Roger Steele who is one of the members of the group that organized the event said they had over 60 entries in the parade. Despite cooler weather huge crowds attended the parade and events all day on Saturday.

Marvin Ray Hill, 58, of County Farm Road, Manchester was charged with two counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, three counts of solicitation of statutory rape and two counts of sexual battery.

According to estimates from Tullahoma Police Chief Paul Blackwell, crowds were roughly 5,500 for the weekend, with 2,000 on Friday night and 3,500 on Saturday night at the annual 41-A Music Festival.

An early morning fire on Oct 8 left a community minus a church. The Ivy Bluff community in Cannon County just across the Coffee County line lost its Methodist Church as it burned to the ground around 2am Monday. Pastor Danny Freeman told WMSR News that a passer-by saw the fire and called authorities. Ezra Marino from Cannon Co was later arrested and charged with burning the church.

In October; after serving Coffee County for 21 years, Coffee County Ambulance director John Cathey says he will retire February 1.

The 3rd annual Chili Cook-off put on by the Manchester Fire Department was another huge success on Saturday. Several hundred people that attended saw 23 teams compete.

The first ever community outreach program was held Oct. 12 at the Coffee County Fair Grounds. 2,358 residents were blessed in various ways throughout the 5 hour event. Jamie Harden one the organizers told WMSR that 700 coats were given away along with 300 pairs of shoes and over 1,000 enjoyed the free food.

A Moore County was charged in October with rape of a 13-year-old Tullahoma girl. 20 year old Jonathan Allen Ford of Chestnut Ridge Road, Lynchburg was arrested Monday by Tullahoma Police Officer Johnny Gore on the charges of rape.

A convicted violent sex offender was arrested in Franklin County and escorted to the Coffee County Jail under a $1 million bond.
Jason Blake Holt, 22, of Woodbury had been missing Oct. 6 when he allegedly cut off his GPS monitoring device while at Hullett’s Shell Station in Manchester while he was with his wife.

The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation announced a $175,000 matching grant to go to Manchester to develop soccer fields at the recently purchased Manchester Sports Park.

A teacher at College Street Elementary School in Manchester was booked into the Coffee County Jail in late October on charges of child abuse.
Charges are against 32 year-old Gary Wilson Hawkins. Charges were brought against the teacher after witnesses came forward describing excessive bruises on Hawkins’ young daughter.

In a story we brought you in early November, a nurse at a Manchester nursing is accused of stealing patients’ pain medication.
Brooke Sissom, 33, of Double Tree Circle, Shelbyville was arrested on nine counts of obtaining controlled substance by fraud.

A major drug bust has occurred in November and the Manchester Police department is too commended for their work on the case.
A confidential female informant who helped police said violent dealers will do what it takes to protect their golden goose. In this case a never ending supply of pills like oxycodone hitting the streets for big money in six counties: Coffee, Rutherford, Bedford, Franklin, Williamson and Davidson.

Donnie Jones, 37, of Tullahoma, was officially charged with first-degree murder in July 2 death of Megan Sharpton, 24, also of Tullahoma.

Norma and Tommy Wright, Wright Paving Co. Inc., and Custom Stone LLC have won in a court ruling over a proposed rock quarry. So far the Wrights have been blocked from building in Hillsboro.

19-year-old Lincoln County man credits God for giving him the strength to climb up a 30-foot ravine with a broken shoulder and a broken leg after spending three days trapped near the wreckage of his pickup truck.

Police are still investigating a homicide after Thomas Colucci was found shot to death inside his home and a woman was badly hurt in rural Coffee County on November 13. No arrests have been made.

The Tennessee Board of Regents and the Council on Occupational Education has granted Tennessee Technology Center at McMinnville permission to open a culinary arts and hospitality tech school to be located at the Manchester ~ Coffee County Conference Center.

Manchester city officials accepted the resignation of City CFO Ester Greene.
Mrs. Greene expressed her desire to resign citing her lack of confidence that she “would be able to live up to this boards expectations.”

The body of a 23 year-old Kayla Qualls of East Lincoln St in Tullahoma was found in a wooded area off of Spring Creek Road in Franklin County in late November. Michael Curtis who is the grandfather of Qualls’ children was later arrested for the murder.

Jimmy Walter Rollins, of Palmer, TN was arrested Nov 29 on Federal Indictments for Eight Counts of Child Pornography Production. During this investigation, over a dozen children from this region have been identified being sexually exploited by the defendant. Over 300,000 photos and videos were discovered during a search warrant of the defendant’s residence.

On Dec 6 groundbreaking was held on the property where the new Coffee County jail.

Jeffrey Smithson was found guilty of first degree murder, first degree felony murder, theft of over $1,000, and especially aggravated robbery of his 81 year-old Aunt Virginia White.

Glenn Schoenmann finally got to come home after 60 years. The remains of the Grundy County soldier will finally return to his family for proper burial. Schoenmann went missing in action during the Korean War back in 1950.

Manchester Police Investigator Stuart Colwell charged 19 year old Robert Lee Conner of Manchester with solicitation of child rape and sexual exploitation of a minor who is age 12.

Tullahoma City Schools Director Dr. Dan Lawson has made the short list for superintendent search in two school systems but Tullahoma may offer him a new contract.

On Christmas Day Estill Springs Fire Chief Anthony Lowhorn died after he fell from a ladder while replacing light bulbs.

District Attorney Mickey Layne announced that local attorney Jeff Ridner will be joining the staff of the Coffee County District Attorney office.
Layne announced that Ridner will replace Emily Roberts, who will be leaving the position Dec. 28, 2012.

Extra: Over 30 house fires reported in Coffee County in 2012 and several meth labs busts occurred.