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Blue Cove Hideaway owner says he's not making changes despite two drownings
More here: http://newschannel9.com/news/local/blue-cove-hideaway-owner-says-hes-not-making-changes-despite-two-drownings
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Standing Ovation: Rising Fawn Soldier Sings at
A North Georgia woman serving our country was in the spotlight in our nation's capital Thursday night. Sgt. Christiana Ball from Rising Fawn, Georgia received a standing ovation following her performance for the President, on the south lawn at the White House. Sgt. Ball is an Army drill sergeant stationed in Fort Leanord Wood, Missouri. This event was part of "In Performance at the White House."
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Man With Down Syndrome Celebrates 25 Years on Job
A Dalton man was honored Thursday for 25-years of service on his job. The 44-year-old has Down syndrome and had no idea he would be surprised for this milestone.We were there as friends, family, and co-workers honored Andy Jackson.Andy is the head bagger at the Dalton Kroger on Cleveland Highway. People who know and work with Andy tell us he's truly an angel to his customers and everyone he encounters. He's very friendly with our customers, and if he can make it 25-years in this kind of business is amazing to all of us, says Andy's co-worker Tonya Moses.It makes him feel good when people appreciate him, and I think most of the people have done so, says Edmond Jackson, Andy's father. We asked Andy what's been the highlight of his 25-years. He said, Bagging and talking with customers.Andy Jackson tells us he has no plans to retire and wants to work at his Kroger store for at least 30-more years.By Jerry Askin
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How to Properly Adjust Driver's Side Mirrors
Whether you're a seasoned driver or just getting your license, chances are the way you set the car's side mirrors is all wrong. The National Motorists Association and Triple A says there is a better way. All drivers have had that moment when they start to change lanes and all of a sudden there is a car that came out of no where. Typical side mirror settings showing car's rear actually creates the blind spot. Safer driving starts with proper side mirror adjustment, eliminating those blind spots. First of all, you don't need to see your own car when you look in the mirror. You know what it looks like and it's not going anywhere. The trouble comes when other vehicles and motorcycles leave your view. To properly adjust your driver's side mirror: - Lean over to the left almost touching your head to the side window - Adjust the mirror where you just barely see the left back corner of your car To properly adjust the passenger side mirror: - Lean to the right and with your head directly above the center console, adjust the passenger mirror where you barely see the right back corner of your car - Back in the driver's position, you will NOT see your trunk The rear view mirror is a bit easier
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Police Beating Leads to $50M Lawsuit
by John Madewell A police beating has led to a $50M lawsuit from an incident that happened last June at the Salvation Army on McCallie Avenue.The multiple strikes with a baton caused multiple broken bones. And it was all captured on video.CLICK HERE to watch the raw video (Caution: Graphic Video and Audio)Privately, people familiar with the video say it's the worst they've ever seen. And Chief Bobby Dodd plainly stated this is wrong.In the video, you hear 37-year-old Adam Tatum pleads for his life. He screams: Please, please don't kill me like that.As the baton blows keep coming, Tatum cries, My legs are broke, please.After multiple shots with a Taser gun, officer Adam Cooley steps in and repeatedly punches Tatum in the face. This is toward the end of this confrontation.Now, here's how it got started.Tatum was staying at the Salvation Army as a halfway house prisoner.He pulled a knife on a man in a blue shirt, his friend Adrian McGhee.Officers James Smith and Sean Emmer respond.Emmer takes him down with a choke hold, which is banned.Tatum runs out of the room. On the video, loud cracks are heard out of camera view.Then officers Emmer and Smith drag him back. His leg is bleeding badly.Chief Dodd said officer Emmer, the one with the baton, and the punching officer Cooley broke policy and in his opinion the law.Dodd said, From the point that they bring him back into camera range, Mr. Tatum did nothing other than plead with them to stop hitting him.But they didn't.Dodd fired both officers and presented aggravated assault cases to the grand jury, which didn't indict the two.But the chief says the video leaves no question. This is one of the worst ones I've seen, the chief said after saying, One of the officers (Emmer) struck Mr. Tatum, just me counting those, I've counted over 48 strikes. And to me, in my opinion, that's excessive and it was abusive.But Emmer wants his job back.His attorneys, Stevie Phillips and Bryan Hoss, say he was justified against an armed man admittedly high on crack cocaine.The release also stated, Chattanooga officers are trained to never assume that a suspect has only 1 weapon. This City has seen officers killed in the line of duty after descalating force only to learn that the criminal has a second weapon. That wasn't the case in this incident.Meanwhile, Tatum ended up with six fractures in one leg, two in the other including a compound one.His attorney, Robin Flores, spoke in limited terms. Flores said, Our complaint lays out the facts that we claim and the complaint will speak for itself.In the video, other officers come in, the chief said, to keep other halfway prisoners from getting involved. Dodd said while two officers clearly crossed the line, he feels the department took appropriate steps. This was all self-initiated, the internal affairs investigation was self initiated. The grand jury presentment was self initiated. The FBI and Department of Justice investigation was self initiated by my office.NewsChannel 9 is waiting to hear back from the FBI, but Chief Dodd says that investigation is still ongoing. The CPD internal affairs investigation is finished.Meanwhile, Tatum remains in jail charged with several offenses from this night including assault on police officers.His attorney is working to get those charges vacated.
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US Army Dad Returns From Kuwait, Surprises Daughter
The man you are about to be introduced to is just one out of millions that serve our country each and every day.Colonel Michael Zarbo with the US Army has been in Kuwait for the past 5 months. He came to Warner Park Saturday morning to surprise his 16-year-old daughter Victoria who was in the Scenic City for a softball tournament. But what he didn't realize was that his family had plans of their own. "It's a commitment, it's a sacrifice. But its something that I just feel like I was put on this planet to do," says Colonel Zarbo.Zarbo will spend the day in Chattanooga with his family, then deploy back to Kuwait in a few days. You can see the soldier surprise in the video above.
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Surviving the Coldest Nights on the Streets
NewsChannel9 has followed one of the first recipients of the sleeping bag coats. These coats have been given to 75 homeless Chattanoogans. They were designed to keep people warm through the cold temperatures, and turn into a sleeping bag during the night. Sunday, two men told us they have worn the coats every night, that without the coat, the winter would have been unbearable. If you would like more information, you can go to www.relevanthope.org.
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Sensa-Calm Creates Calming Blankets for Special Needs Customers
Six-year-old D.J. Moody doesn't know it, but his new, weighted blanket has been blessed. Across town, a pastor and a seamstress are praying. Lord we pray for the parents and mother of the child, and they need an awful lot of rest, says Roger Kittle as he prays with his wife Carol. They pray for children like D.J. with sensory processing disorders, autism and other special needs. It's almost like being hugged, says Brenda Cooper with Sensa-Calm. They feel that sense of security like swaddling. Each Sensa-calm order comes in to the St. Elmo office where one of more than 60 fabrics for their weighted blankets is measured and cut. One of several seamstresses picks up the order, the fabric and filler, and takes them home to mark, sew and fill. Each pocket gets the perfect amount of pellets to create a weight specific to each child or adult. in D.J.'s case, it's 6 pounds that make a real difference. For D.J. to have something really heavy, it helps him understand where his body is in space, says his Occupational Therapist Courtney Pittman. It helps calm him. It helps him be more organized. And before the blankets are packed and shipped We will make a note on the order with the child's name and any particular problem and that shows up on the order and when the seamstresses get the order, they make a point of praying, Cooper e
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Roll Call and Taps at Chattanooga United Memorial Service
Click 'play' to watch roll call and taps that ended the Chattanooga United memorial service for those killed on July 16th, 2015. Watch the service in its entirety here.
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Lawyer Weighs in on Police Order to Destroy Video
The Tennessee Highway Patrol is investigating an incident involving a trooper who ordered video of a wreck scene destroyed. The video was shot by a NewsChannel9 videographer at a crash on I-75 on Thursday morning. An attorney with broad experience in the First Amendment says your video is your property and police have no authority to delete it. Click 'play' to learn more.
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Skyy Mims Guilty, Trial Was a Show
Sky Mimms is now a convicted murderer, waiting to be sentenced Mims savagely killed convenience store clerk, DK Chaudhari. A surprise from a girl with no criminal record. A girl who always did well in school. "We The Jury Find The Defendant Guilty Of Count One Malice Murder, Guilty Count 2 Felony Murder." Sky Mims guilty on all 11 counts against her no emotion and is taken out of the courtroomb. The prosecution called 28 witnesses the defense only 2 both testifying today. Bert Poston said "The evidence in the case was overwhelming so the verdict really wasn't unexpected. We're just happey glad to finally get the case tried and get some closure for the friends and family that lost a good man." During the entire trial
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Wind River Tiny Homes: Living Large While St
Living large in tiny houses is a craze that's sweeping the nation. Wind River Tiny Homes was started by three men in Cleveland. They are out to prove tiny is tops. At Wind River Tiny Homes, less is more: less energy use, less waste, less debt, and less to clean. Travis Pyke, Jeremy Weaver, and Caleb Knowles founded Wind River Custom Homes, now known as Wind River Tiny Homes. They build custom tiny homes in Cleveland, Tennessee. "I just bought a trailer and started working on it in the evenings and weekends. It took me about a year to build," said Travis Pyke, one of the founders of Wind River Tiny Homes. Travis and his wife have been living in their tiny house now for a year and half. They never looked back. "If you're in a transitional stage of life you might not be ready to settle into a set area. This way you can take your equity with you," said Pyke. The typical tiny house is 24-feet-long and has every part of a normal house, just shrunk down. They find the pint-sized appliances at marine shops. Some tiny homes are on wheels while others are anchored into the ground. A fully-furnished home ranges anywhere from 45 to 55 thousand dollars. "We really get to know them so we know exactly how to build a house that fits what they want because it is such a small space you have to get everything just right," said Pyke. Pyke, Weaver, and Knowles show NewsChannel 9 in a tiny house they are building now. "The kitchen will be right here. I think the sink will go right here in front of the window, centered over the window," said Jeremy Weaver. A shower and a toilet will fit in the bathroom area. "Honestly for a tiny house this is a pretty big bathroom," said Weaver. There is room for a living room and even space for a couch. This tiny house is equip with two lofts: one is for storage and one is a bedroom. Both Pyke and Weaver live in tiny houses with their wives. "I would say that anyone can go tiny but it's a process," said Weaver. Weaver says down-size in phases
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Family Upset Over Continuous Crypt Leakage
by Kyra Rogers Joy Andies and daughter Amy say they aren't asking for much, just a peaceful final resting place for their mother and grandmother, Beulah C. Bennett. Nearly 25 years ago they thought Sunset Memorial Gardens was the answer. €œThe smell, I mean before anything else the smell just hits you. It's a sickening smell,€ said Amy. Now what should be a time to remember their loved one, has become something Amy physically cannot stomach. €œThey said that when my grandmother was buried the tomb wasn't sealed properly, she said. That was the reason given to NewsChannel 9 six months ago when a spokesperson for the mausoleum said the problem would be fixed. €œThey gave me their apology, said Amy. They said the front of her tomb had been removed and had been sealed correctly, and here we are six months later and clearly it wasn't done.€ The family says it's a disgrace to the memory of their loved one, and enough is enough. Andies' attorney Jim Logan said, We will file a legal petition that will go before the chancellor. The chancellor will determine whether or not what you smelled in there should be allowed to exist here today. He says they already have more signatures than they need from people who say they also suffered at the hands of the cemetery. We reached out to Sunset Memorial Gardens and were told they would have no comment at this time.
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A Visit to Underground Chattanooga
As you walk the streets of downtown Chattanooga, amid the shops and restaurants, you'll find evidence of the Chattanooga time forgot. Mysteries still surround this part of town that existed in the 1800's. Theres a hidden world below with stairways leading nowhere and arched doorways that were once street level. Decorative columns, bead board ceilings and arched doorways hinting at the past. Stories and rumors still fly about underground Chattanooga. Torrential rains caused flooding from every direction. They devastated downtown several times during the mid 19th century.The citizen has only one solution. Chattanooga had to be raised to higher ground. Engineers quietly set about the plan leaving tales still told of the city that lies beneath. Attorney Maury Nicely and developer Matt McGauley know about the history and take me underground to see evidence of the original Chattanooga the public doesn't see. Going downstairs of a building at 7th and Cherry St, Nicely says, I think a lot of people think they just bricked in all these buildings and then threw a bunch of dirt in. The most interesting part is the stone work. Obviously thought out and planned stone was laid about 4 feet from the outside walls of some of first floor entrances. Then, fill dirt was put behind it. Official records of the plan are mostly silent according to Nicely. In a building n
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Georgia State Patrol plagued by low trooper numbers
More here: http://newschannel9.com/news/local/georgia-state-patrol-plagued-by-low-trooper-numbers
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Chattanooga Woman Remembers Watching Challenger Ex
"5, 4, 3, 2, 1, blast off!" Fifth graders in Ms. Vivian Wood's Red Bank Elementary school classroom excitedly cheered as the Challenger launched into space January 28, 1986. NewsChannel 9 cameras were inside that classroom during the historic moment. They kept rolling one minute later, when the Challenger exploded, killing all seven crew members. On Wednesday, the 29th anniversary of the explosion, that footage was shown in our newscasts. Hours later, a woman who was in that classroom contacted us after recognizing herself in the video. Thursday, we heard her recollection of that tragic day. "It's something we had built up all year in our classroom." Of course, we were excited because the news was there in our classroom," says Dixie McKeel. McKeel remembers watching the live coverage "like it was yesterday." The crew included the "First Teacher in Space," Christa McAuliffe, who won NASA's nationwide competition. Ms. Woods was in the running to be that teacher in space
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Waste Watch: Food Stamp Fraud
by Alyssa Spirato State and federal food assistance programs are meant to help struggling families, but not everyone uses their EBT card the way it's intended.NewsChannel9 obtained records pointing to some swiping theirs for alcohol and even strip clubs. Most of the transactions are on the up-and up, but others caught our eye. Ronica Scott is one of the many Chattanooga residents who relies on government assistance. She says she's been on food stamps for the past 7 years."That's how my children eat from day to day. So I need it, I use mine the right way," says Scott.An advocacy group, Tennessee Watchdog, gave us state reports documenting every EBT transaction in June. One business on the list was the Chattanooga Convention Center. The report claims three transactions in June totaling about 30. Executive Director Mike Shuford says according to his records, they were a lobby ATM."We don't monitor our ATM machine. You know, you can walk up and we assume, we have cameras on it, but we don't look at what kind of card is being put into the machine," says Shuford.The Honest Pint restaurant and bar also made it onto the list. The records show a transaction for 2.50 on June 5th.It's a problem state officials are well aware of, and working to fix. There's one current snag. There's no way to track the cash once it's taken out. But thanks to a new law enacted in February, new regulations will be put in place."We can't prove because someone cashes their EBT Card at an ATM machine in a liquor store, that they are buying it for liquor. However, the new federal regulation is going to prohibit the use of EBT cards being cashed in liquor stores and adult entertainment," says Wanda Franklin, with Families First.As for Ronica Scott, she feels the responsibility lies in the hands of the user."It give the people that's using it the right way, it give us a bad name," says Scott.Now while the new regulation will prohibit ATM transactions in liquor stores and adult-oriented establishments, it won't put a stop to transactions at malls or hotels.Franklin says they hope to have the new regulation put in place very soon.
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New Volunteer Fire Department Proposed in McMinn
A community meeting in McMinn County got heated tonight as residents discussed where they will get help in an emergency- and how long it could possibly take to get it. If approved by the McMinn County commissioners, new volunteer fire department called the North McMinn County Fire and Rescue Team would serve District 9. McMinn County commissioner, J.W. McPhail says the new department would shut down Union Grove Volunteer Fire Department. McMinn County Resident Margaret McCowan was outraged to hear that at Monday night's meeting, and says her loyalty lies in the department which is about 35 years old. McCowan says, "The fire hall and the volunteers that work there- they have been more than outstanding over the years." Commissioner McPhail says anyone that is a qualified responder would be welcome to join the new department. Union Grove firefighters like Ray Stewart say they are qualified, but since their secretary- who's now facing felony charges- had been dishonest and with funds and paperwork, they are having a hard time proving it. Stewart says, "All of us went to training. We were all there with these other guys. We paid our money." Commissioner J.W. McPhail says the certifications aren't the missing paperwork. He says the water utility company recently put locks on fire hydrants because the correct paperwork was not being filed through Union Grove to be able to use that water. McPhail says that's a problem because in order to fight a fire, "you've got to have water." If approved the new fire department would provide fire and emergency medical services. Phillip Waller says he is a certified first responder and he hopes to work for the new North McMinn Fire and Rescue Team if it works out. "We need somebody over here- We need them immediately," Waller said. Union Grove Fire Chief Alvin Shoemaker in McMinn County say since the County recently removed two fire trucks from them, they have been unable to respond to at least four emergency calls. Other nearby fire departments are helping Union Grove respond to emergency calls like those in the meantime- but those departments can be up to 15 minutes away from an incident. McPhail said the matter will be voted on at the next McMinn County Commissioners meeting on February 16.
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99 year old hairstylist
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Day 4: NA Evidence Connects Skyy Mims'
Expert testimony showed DNA evidence connected Skyy Mims to the crime scene as day four of a high profile murder trial progressed Thursday afternoon. Mims, an aspiring entertainer, sat laughing to herself at times while forensic experts detailed their findings to the jury. "The profiles of that found on the glove with the red tape were that of Mr. Chaudhari and of Skyy Mims," said Terri George, a forensic biologist with the GBI crime lab. Prosecutors said the gloves are the same ones used by the killer. In surveillance video, the killer wore gloves and covered DK Chaudhari's face with red duct tape inside Kanku's Express in Dalton on March 9, 2014. Based on a chart, some of Mims' DNA on the tape roll wasn't in a high enough concentration. But inside the gloves, forensic experts had one match for Mims without a doubt. "What conclusions can you draw? I was able to match, she matched at all 15 locations for both gloves, and the frequency for that was 1 in 5 quintillion," said George. None of Mims' DNA was found on the weapon. But witnesses said earlier this week that Mims bought a fish filet knife before the murder. The state is working to build their burden of proof, including that Mims had joked about robbing a store. A Cartersville gas station clerk said he remembered Mims come into his store before the murder. "I said 'Oh my god she was in our store Saturday,'" said Christopher Palmer, also known as Christopher Path, a gas station clerk for Kangaroo in Cartersville. "She came to the checkout counter, and she asked me about how much money we kept in our register and if we had a safe." Prosecutors also played the chilling video of Chaudhari's murder played again for the jury, as the medical examiner explained the victim's injuries from his autopsy report. "For a period of time after the initial injuries, there was still purposeful movement," said Dr. Christopher Gulledge, a medical examiner who performed Chaudhari's autopsy. The victim tried to hold on after the first stab wound, but Gulledge said it "is a lethal injury" because it injured the aorta, a major heart artery. The coroner said Chaudhari would not have lived by the time officers showed up about 25 minutes later, and Gulledge said Chaudhari probably died about five minutes after the aorta was hit. The victim bled out and died. "Bleeding is more of a timer. The timer is going to start running down. We don't know how long it's going to last. We don't know when it's going to go off, but it's going to keep running. and at some point, it's going to end," said Gulledge. Testimony Thursday afternoon also included a manager from the Georgia Lottery Corporation, the owner of the stolen Kia Soul who said he saw a tall person drive off in his fiance's car, and also a detective who processed the crime scenes at Kanku's and in Bartow County. The trial resumes Friday morning before Judge Jack Partain. By Briona Arradondo
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Made in Chattanooga: Altoids
By: Latricia Thomas  A curiously strong flavor helped pave the way for Altoids to become the number one mint in the United States. And while they may have gotten their start in the United Kingdom, employees of the local Wrigley factory are proud that they are now made right here in Chattanooga at the Jersey Pike facility. "When Wrigley purchased Altoids, they moved them to Chattanooga to save on the environment and save money on transporting them to the United States," says Wales native Anne Mahoney. She came across the pond with the curiously strong mints, that were first marketed to relieve sour stomach. "They asked if I would come to set up the equipment and that was six years ago because I love Chattanooga so much."They may not actually help your health, but your breath? That's another story that starts with a gelatin and sugar mix. "We make a sheet almost like a biscuit or a dough then it gets mixed with the flavors and other things," says plant manager Bruce Verburg. "Then it comes out in a big loaf and it's sheeted like a rolling pin, and then we have cookie cutters that make that circle that everyone knows and loves with Altoids." Then its onto the conveyer belt for drying, until the mints are filtered into those signature shiny tins. "The tins are opened, the iconic paper is placed, the mints are placed into the empty tin, and on the other side the tins are closed," Verburg says. Then they are ready to be boxed and packaged, before Wrigley ships the strongly-scented sweet that never wears out it's welcome all over the world.And it's not just what's inside those tins that have built a huge fan base for Wrigley. Consumers have found all kinds of uses for the tin itself, like hand-held works of art, or even an emergency wilderness stove.
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Made in Dalton: Mohawk Industries
By: Latricia Thomas When the housing market crashed, times got tough for the carpet industry, which is centralized right here in Northwest Georgia. So how have huge companies, with thousands of employee, survived?One step inside one of the largest plants in the carpet capital of the world and it's easy to see how Dalton earned the title. "About 75 percent of the carpet in the country is made right here in North Georgia," says Tom Lape, Mohawk's President of Residential and Commercial Business.Mohawk Industries let us inside on of their Dalton plants, where some of the 2,000 employees turn fiber into yarn, which is carried by tubes to the needles in what's essentially a gigantic sewing machine.The tufting machines, that press the yarn through the carpet backing, are such an important part of the process, some think they may have helped slow the shrink of the carpet business here. "One of the reasons Dalton has been able to maintain its position in the textile business," Lape says, "is we've made so much investment to be efficient so we can still compete."After tufting, the rolls are dyed, steamed and set before their first visual inspection under harsh fluorescent lighting to make sure it would hold up to a customer's look in any situation.Add a quick layer of latex to bind the backing, and the carpet's ready for the roll. Just one of many products that helps Mohawk loom large in the industry. "While the industry has changed and shrunk, most companies have expanded their footprint within the industry," Lape says. "And that's made it even more important to the Northwest Georgia area as well as Mohawk."Mohawk has 32 facilities across Northwest Georgia and employs 6,500 people, a number that's even more important when you consider September's unemployment rate in Dalton was more than 11 percent.For more about Mohawk Industries, click here to head to their website.
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Made in Chattanooga: Life Savers Mean Sweet Success for Wrigley
By: Latricia Thomas  A hard candy that's in high-demand across the country is pressed into the shape and smell we all recognize right here in Chattanooga. The Life Savers brand just celebrated their 100 year anniversary at their Jersey Pike facility, and we went inside the factory to show you how the candy that's heaped with history is made.The first thing you notice about the local Wrigley plant is the sweet smell. "When I come in the gate or even on Jersey Pike," Plant Director Bruce Verburg says. "I can tell what we are making, wintergreen or peppermint. It puts a smile on your face when you come to work."It's the same thing machinist Cheryl Lee loves about her job. "My grand-babies are like, 'Oh Granny you smell like candy today!'"The minty candies, named for their resemblance to mini life preservers, come from sweet sugar that's ground and infused with flavor and colors. Then it's filtered into the pressing machine where it's squeezed into that recognizable iconic shape.Cheryl's in charge of the press and making sure the pungent peppermints are perfection on the conveyer belt. "We're looking to make sure the candy comes out perfect," she says. "And that the candy says Life Saver mints and has the hole in it."So that once they're wrapped and bagged, they're a point of pride on the store shelf. It's a reminder of a job well done today, as this local factory keeps growing.  They recently expanded their workforce to 300 and added Gummie Life Saver production in 2005, to the same brand that's been cranking out this cool candy for 100 years. "During World War Two, everything was rationed," Verburg says. "So the other people who made treats gave sugar to Wrigley so they could make Life Savers and ship them to the troops so they could remember home.It's not only the smell of Life Savers that escapes from the Wrigley facility. Next time, we'll take you back inside and show you how Altoids are made.For  more information about Wrigley and Life Savers, click here to visit their website.
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Burn Victim Meets Firefighters Who Helped Save Him
Monday was a reunion like no other - a local toddler meets the firefighters who helped save him from his burning home. The 2-year-old suffered severe burns all over his body from that fire in Chattanooga 8-months ago.The reunion was all smiles and joy for 2-year old Tyler Jackson. We wanted Tyler to meet the firefighters that saved him, says Tyler's mother Shondell Jackson. And Monday, he did just that. After getting an early Christmas gift from firefighters, Tyler even got a chance to get behind the wheel of a real fire truck. Bonding with the brave men in black was like no other for Tyler and his family.We're really grateful to have the opportunity to meet Tyler. He comes in here, the first thing he wants to do is play with the fire trucks. That's right down our alley, says Captain Randy Steele from the Chattanooga Fire Department. Back in April, 2 firefighters carried Tyler and his 3-year-old brother, Tyrell, from their burning home on Rawlings Street. Tyler was flown to the burn center in Augusta for treatment of severe burns all over his body.He spent 5-months there recovering. The reunion was bittersweet for Tyler's family. Tyler's brother Tyrell didn't survive the fire.We feel like God could have took them both, but he blessed us with Tyler, and that helps to overtake that pain of losing Tyrell, but we miss him so much, says Tyler's grandmother Georgetta Jackson. The mother also suffered minor burns while trying to save her two boys from the fire, but firefighters say she couldn't get to them. Monday's reunion brought back memories of her oldest son Tyrell and how different Christmas will be this year without him. Last night, I was looking at pictures from last year, and I just cried my eyes out, says Shondell Jackson.To him, he feel like he's just a normal 2-year-old, so he look in the mirror, that's all he sees is Tyler, he doesn't see any burns or anything, says Georgetta Jackson.The family says 2-year-old Tyler will have to visit the burn center in Augusta for check-ups likely for the rest of his life. Firefighters don't yet know what caused the fire at the home.By Jerry Askin
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Athens Resident Speaks Out on Tinted Window Violations
A McMinn County man claims Calhoun government officials are using window tint violations to get money out of drivers. Athens resident Tommy Bottoms said a Calhoun police officer cited him for tints at 18 percent, but he ended up paying more than the $180 fine after he fixed the violation.I had the tint took off the windows, and then when I went to court, he dismissed the ticket then charged me $151 for court costs, said Bottoms, who paid about $300 total for court fees and tint removal.Bottoms said he never had a problem before with his window tints since he bought the car three years ago.My daughter's gotten pulled over. My wife has gotten pulled over, and then I got pulled over, said Bottoms. Nothing was said about the window tint until I got pulled over.NewsChannel 9 couldn't reach anyone with the Calhoun Police Department Tuesday to see if illegal tints are a growing problem in that area.Nearby, Athens police have passed out quite a few tickets for window tint violations in the past eight months. According to Capt. Frank Horning, they issued 112 tickets between January and April. But it seemed to slow down around the summer with only 44 citations between May and August, Horning said.Sgt. Bill Miller, of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, said any car with tints below the legal limit of 35 percent is a red flag. He said dark windows pose a safety risk to law enforcement officers, who need to see the inside of a car.We have a small group of the public who do utilize the window tint for criminal activity, and that's when we're going to come in, said Miller. If the windows are too dark, (then) we'll stop you and write a citation for the window tint. You will have to have it removed.THP said police cruisers can have tints too to protect laptops and K-9 officers, but those patrol cars also have to obey the tint law.By Briona Arradondo
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Policing For Profit:  Getting the Car Back is Bittersweet
Over the past few months, we've been examining the way that police officers can seize vehicles during routine traffic stops. We discovered that, during many stops that take drunk drivers and drug couriers off the roads, innocent people can get their vehicles seized, too. One particular situation caught our attention and yesterday, its conclusion is still leaving more questions than answers. This day is a bittersweet day for Romanzia Humphrey.. she's picking up her vehicle from a Highway Patrol impound lot. "I'm afraid," she says. "After everything that's happened, I'm just afraid to drive it." Her experience with the way police can seize a vehicle has left her, traumatized. 6 months ago, she loaned the car to her son, knowing he had a revoked license.. he was stopped on Highway 153 and the vehicle seized under Tennessee's civil asset forfeiture law, even though there was nothing in the car and neither Mrs. Humphrey nor her husband were there. That situation even caused the officer to ask for help, as, in the dashcam video obtained by NewsChannel 9, he radios a fellow trooper more familiar with the law. "Even that poor trooper.. he didn't know what to do," Mrs. Humphrey noted. "That tells you something." We took the confusing issue to legislators in Nashville, to try and get them to re-evaluate the law, to protect the innocent like Mrs. Humphrey. But since the arresting agencies get money from vehicle seizures, the issue died in a subcommittee because it was found, the state would have to make up the money lost. "It gives the police an incentive to overstep the bounds and be overly aggressive in vehicle seizures," he says, "and also to pursue people who shouldn't be pursued." Mrs. Humphrey worries that, because of police enforcing the law the way it is now, what happened to her, will happen to anybody. "A lot of people might take advantage of the fact that you should know these laws," she says, "but if you are not privy to them, how are you going to know about them?" After our series of stories on this issue, the state dismissed Mrs. Humphrey's case. Instead of the $3,000 dollars, plus the administrative fees, they told her she'd have to pay to get it back, she paid just the $1,200 dollars in administrative fees.. In the moment of truth when she was ready to take her car out of the impound lot, she was too shaken up to drive it herself. One of her other sons drove it off the lot, and home. Attorney McGowan says, a fairer way to do vehicle seizures, would be, to have any money from them, go into the state or municipality's general fund, instead of, to the arresting agencies. He says until that fact is changed on the legislative level, police officers will always appear to have an incentive to stop and seize as many vehicles as possible. It is possible that the problems with Tennessee's Civil Asset Forfeiture law will come up in the legislature again. Outgoing State Representative Vince Dean, himself also a former Chattanooga police officer says, if the issue of costing the state money is resolved in a future subcommittee, the law could come back up for debate next year. By Calvin Sneed
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McCallie High School's Hype Video Goes Viral
McCallie will play Baylor in football for the 83rd time tonight. You could say it's one of the biggest high school football rivalries in Tennessee, and now the whole country's watching after one school's YouTube video goes viral. By now - you've probably seen the video made by McCallie High School students. Students at the school came up with the idea to make the video a few weeks ago to inspire fellow McCallie students and add some "HYPE" -as they call it - for the rivalry game against Baylor. Earlier today, we stopped by McCallie just in time for the surprise star at their pep rally. I've always loved to sing, so we just went to his house, and recorded the chorus, and I heard their parts. We just got together and did the video, and it was really fun,ƒ’‚’ƒ€š‚ƒ’‚€šƒ€š‚‚ƒ’‚€šƒ€š‚ said Tia Kemp, GPS Junior. We talked to some of the guys who helped make this video. "As a young boy, you always dream of being on ESPN and seeing your heroes up there, and to be on ESPN with such a group of guys that have meant so much to me personally and this school - it's something that's awesome. And I will never forget my time here with these guys,"ƒ€š‚ said one of the McCallie senior boys. But, it wouldn't be the best high school football rivalry - if there wasn't some type of rebuttal. Earlier this afternoon - Baylor students released this video. "Instead of putting down McCallie, I think it's going to bring Baylor up," said Baylor senior, Amelia Moore. "ƒ€š‚“I got down here. I was told not to like the guys in blue, and it's been that way ever since," said senior running back, Adrian Harris. But regardless if you're cheering for the guys in red or in blue - it's a game - that everyone hopes lives up to the hype. Game starts at 7:30 at Baylor. By: Stephanie Santostasi
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"Pray for Chattanooga" Tribute Song Written
For some people music has a healing effect, for 17-year-old Hunter Wolkonowski music helped to distract. She's been writing music since she was 9-years-old, but what she started on Thursday brought on a whole new meaning. She wrote a song in honor of the servicemen while on lockdown less than one mile away from the Recruitment Center on Lee Highway. "I think it was the manager
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Brothers Reunited After 50 Years
by Mikaya Thurmond It's a reunion 50 years in the making. Two brothers separated by a continent finally reunited. William and Behar Farah grew up together in Gaza, but when William got married he moved to Chattanooga, while his brother moved to Australia. More than 50 years passed and they never could afford the money to see each other again; until, their nephew paid the way to make it all happen. When you see a picture, it's different than when you see a real man and when I knew him he was a young boy in school, says William Farah. As William waited with his children and grandchildren. His wife became overwhelmed with emotions. I'm excited, just feeling excitement. I don't know it's just a good feeling after all these years, adds Carolyn Farah. After waiting for about an hour, a glimpse on the horizon as Behar fell into his brothers arms. The brothers, who are 81 and 70, plan to spend the next 2 months together. As you can imagine, they have quite a bit of catching up to do.
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Undercover Colors: Nail Polish to Detect Date Rape Drugs
A fashion accessory could help in the fight against sexual assault. Four North Carolina State University students invented a nail polish that alerts women to date rape drugs. It's called "Undercover Colors," and it's a nail polish concept for men that getting a lot of attention. NewsChannel9's Briona Arradondo spoke to a local woman named Melanie who said she was raped and wishes something like that product was invented sooner. "When you wake up and you realize that you've been beaten and raped, but you can't remember anything, you need to go immediately to the hospital or to the Rape Crisis Center and get blood work done immediately," said Melanie. A way to detect drinks laced with Rohypnol and other date rape drugs is what inspired the four men to create the concept and empower women. It's a clear polish that only changes color when in contact with Rohypnol, Xanax, and GHB. Melanie said that concept gives her comfort. "It does, and I would wear it everyday," said Melanie. "I would buy it for everyone I know, definitely." College-aged men and women agree. "That's something I would definitely use because it's a very dangerous situation that happens lot," said Madison Luna, a University of Tennessee at Chattanooga student. "It will definitely make girls feel safer when they're out and about," said Ross Mauldin, a UTC student. Salon specialists said it appeals to their clients. However, the product is not yet available to the market, and the innovators are collecting donations to continue their research and development. "I wouldn't necessarily say that it is too sensitive because I think that we can never be too careful these days," said Genia Church, Epiphany Salon and Day Spa co-owner. "So, to offer something like that I think it's going to go over well." But advocates said the product won't solve the problem of assault, and it's just one way to raise awareness. So, for people like Melanie, she said it's important to act when you are sexually assaulted. "I have rights, and I'm going to go after my rights. I have a right to be protected," said Melanie. Even though the product opens up a conversation, rape advocates said it won't prevent assault. Advocates said people need to be aware that attackers can be strangers or someone you know. The Partnership's Rape Crisis Center in Chattanooga reports 185 new clients of sexual assaults from June 2013 to July 2014, and workers said they performed 80 exams for evidence on victims. The number of clients for the Partnership are up from 2012, when the number of new clients was 103. If you need to report a rape, call the crisis hotline at 423-755-2700. By Briona Arradondo
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UPDATE: So. Pittsburg Cop Fired After Arresting City Official
A high ranking South Pittsburg city official is arrested and now the arresting officer has been fired. The city commission fired Sergeant Paul West last night, after his traffic stop arrest of city administrator Sammy Burrows. The Friday night arrest involved much more than speeding. Officers at the scene claim the city administrator used intimidation tactics to stop the arrest. But four days later the city commission voted unanimously to fire the arresting officer. South Pittsburg arrest reports indicate Burrows was stopped going 72 miles per hour in a 35mph zone. Deeper into the report, the stopping officer, Ben Canales, said he felt intimidated because Burrows was using his position to try and stop the arrest from happening. Sergeant Paul West responded.The arrest report quotes Burrows as saying boys you don't want to do this. But West arrested the city administrator on four charges -- speeding, reckless driving, resisting arrest and obstruction of an officer. Fast forward to last night - the city commission voted 5-0 to fire the sergeant.This afternoon, we spoke with Mayor Jane Dawkins, who also voted for the termination. I viewed a video yesterday that was of great concern to me, Mayor Dawkins said. That video was from West's body camera after the arrest. Dawkins continued, Th
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Body Cam Video Sheds Light On South Pittsburg City Administrator Arrest
It's a traffic stop that's divided the city of South Pittsburg. A police officer was fired after responding to that traffic stop - involving a city administrator. Now we have more clues about what happened that night. South Pittsburg Police claim Sammy Burrows was driving 72 in a 35. But he's not the one facing backlash. Burrows gets to keep his job as a city administrator, while Sergeant Paul West - lost his. The move left many people in South Pittsburg with unanswered questions. Some of which, can be answered with the video recording from that night. We do want to warn you, there is strong language in this video. Sergeant Paul West's body cam video begins recording after the traffic stop, when he handcuffs City Administrator Sammy Burrows. From the beginning of the recording, their exchange is heated. What are you going to do? Fight us? 72 miles an hour. Don't you ever mistreat one of my officers. You understand me? Never. I'm not going to listen to another thing you say right now cause you haven't let me talk, says Sgt. West to Burrows. Soon after, Sgt. West puts Burrows in the back of a police car. Fast forward about 10 minutes to their arrival at the Marion County Jail where Burrows is booked. You disappoint me. Don't ever interfere with me or my officers okay? I ain't chewing y
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Federal Suspect Once Hailed a Hero
As the result of a four year-long investigation, federal agents rounded up 32 suspects in Chattanooga Monday. The suspects all face charges related to selling drugs. The leaders in the war on drugs in the city of Chattanooga called them some of the most dangerous offenders on the streets. Tuesday, we learned more about some of their pasts. 20-year-old Jumoke Johnson has a lengthy rap sheet and has been charged with a number of drug and assault charges. But, he was being herald as a hero for trying to save a baby from a burning home back in April of 2013. We ran over there to help and we get to the back door. I see a baby in the back door, like standing in the back door. And I kicked the screen out, then a baby like, he was screaming. But I couldn't get the back door open because of the security bars, says Jumoke Johnson back in April of 2013. Jumoke's grandfather told us that Jumoke has had his fair share of runs in with law enforcement since he was 11-years-old. He says his grandson was trying to turn things around after receiving a college scholarship to Miles College in Alabama. This week Jumoke Johnson is one of the 32 men that federal, state, and local authorities say are violent offenders. These are not first time felons, these are people who are involved, and that's why I'm excited to%
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Made in Chattanooga - American Saddlery, Inc.
John Wayne may have never ridden in a saddle made by American Saddlery, and "The Duke" never knew what he missed.  American Saddlery has been in Chattanooga 38 years.  Its 40 employees proudly keeping equestrians comfortable in the saddle, and the horses happy to tote them around.  The company has 100 models of saddles, all of them MADE IN CHATTANOOGA.The 40 employees at American Saddlery specialize in saddles, but also "bridles, breast collars, and smaller items like tie straps, curb straps, throat straps and others," says company president A. J. "Jack" Hughes.The key to building a good saddle starts here with Barbara.. She works with strips of leather, and pattern molds.  "The seats are cut in 2 pieces," says Mr. Hughes.  "The reason we do that is so we can get uniformity in each side."  While that's going on, the horn is built at another station.  It is trimmed to make it smooth, with a finished edge.  The leather cutouts that worker Barbara is working on, are brought to the next station, where a wooden mold is waiting.  "The front is added, and we have shaped the seat," Mr. Hughes says.  "That is one of the most important things to the saddle, because where you sit, has to be comfortable."Leather has been stitched by hand.  "You work leather when it is ready to be work, not when you're ready to work it," he says.  The pieces are glued to the wooden mold.  The Cheyenne roll is the finished part of the particular seat we are following through the manufacturing process.Skirts are then attached.  "The skirts have a fleece lining that actually sits down on the horse's back."Left and right fenders are added..The final product is the result of a lot of tender loving care..But will the horse like it, with me in the saddle?  "I hope the horse knows what to do," I say to myself.The next morning, a beautiful warm, sunny day on the farm in Ooltewah, my horse Joey doesn't seem to mind the saddle... Or me.  I'm certainly not an expert, but the saddle we watched being made, actually rides pretty good."It's very critical that the saddle not only fit the rider," Mr. Hughes says, "but that the saddle fits the horse.  That's very important.Joey the horse, didn't seem to mind it at all.American Saddlery ships out 15 to 20 saddles a day, just like that one. People love them in this country, and people in China, Germany, Italy, France, Belgium and Canada apparantly enjoy them, too.  The company has regular shipments to those countries.Made in America... And MADE IN CHATTANOOGA.
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Was Handicapped Parking Spot Taken by a Senator?
Was Handicapped Parking Spot Taken by a Senator?
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Courtroom Chaos After Guilty Verdict in Murder Trial
Chaos, disruptions and threats take over a Hamilton County courtroom Friday afternoon after a jury finds Roderick Bates and Emmett Jones guilty of first degree murder in the 2011 death of Reginald Clark.Supporters of the two men convicted were barely able to hold themselves up. Deputies were forced to use taser guns, demanding other loved ones leave the courthouse. Just minutes before, inside the courtroom, Jones and Bates reacted immediately to the verdict. This some [expletives deleted], this some [expletives deleted], man this some [expletives deleted] - you all know this is some [expletives deleted], says Emmett Jones. Family and friends of the victim remained quiet. They were clearly outnumbered in the audience. Meanwhile Bates accused the all-white jury of racism. The judge hit Jones with an extra contempt charge based on his behavior. The [expletives deleted] you all got all these white folks on our jury, this [expletives deleted] is crazy, says Bates. Judge Steelman on the bench did what he could to restore order. The prosecutor Lance Pope says the trial was fair and he's obviously happy with the verdict. Friday, both Bates and Jones attorneys had no comment. As typical for any first degree murder conviction, both men were sentenced with life in prison with parole. They'll be sentenced for the especially aggravated burglary charge on March 24th.By Jerry Askin____________________________________________________________________________Previous StoryAfter several hours of deliberation over two days, a jury in Hamilton County has found Roderick Bates and Emmett Jones guilty of the 2011 murder of Reginald Clark. Pandemonium erupted in the packed courtroom right after the verdict was read just after 11 a.m. Friday. Our crew inside the courtroom reports that both defendants shouted after the verdict was read, calling it racist and using several expletives. Both defendants were quickly escorted out of the courtroom. Family members of both remained - and continued to shout and cry over the verdict. The disorder rippled out into the hallway of the Hamilton County courthouse. Seven to 10 people had to be escorted out of the courtroom by officers who had tasers drawn. Presiding Judge Barry Steeleman said, I've been in the justice system for 20 years and I've never seen anything like that. That was extreme contempt.Reported gang connections for both defendants had court officials institute tight security during the trial. All courtroom observers had to pass through a metal detector before entering the courtroom.After order was restored, the jury also declared Bates Jones guilty of especially aggravated burglary. Both men were sentenced to life in prison on the first degree murder conviction. They'll both be sentenced March 24th at 1:30pm.Bates and Jones confronted Clark back in October 2011 outside the now-closed Fire Ice Club. Prosecutors successfully argued that Bates and Jones followed Clark back to his home, where they killed him.Depend on NewsChannel9 for more updates on this story.
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New U.S. Citizenship Bring Out Emotions of Joy
The Constitution of the United States guarantees its citizens, many rights and privileges. People not born in this country, can declare their desire to become citizens, and for many of them, it is an emotional declaration. Today, that ceremony was held at the Federal Courthouse in Chattanooga. It's a solemn occasion that many of us don't get to see, with a color guard, and the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance. Originally from Vietnam, this is an important ceremony for Tien Ly Brown. She's among 50 people, representing 25 different nationalities, who become American citizens. She says, it's a day she's been waiting for. "I don't know how to say it well, but thank you, my husband, my family and all of America, thank you." "I don't have to tell you that this is an important day," Federal Magistrate Judge Bill Carter told the group, "because from this day on, from this day forward... you're going to be identified as a citizen of the United States of America." Judge Carter also told the prospective citizens, that allegiance to America has its rights, among them the freedom to speak out, the freedom to worship how you please, to benefit from government programs, and reminded them of their obligations to vote, serve on juries if asked, and paying taxes. "And I will support and defend the Constitution and laws," each applicant repeated in their oath of allegience. "So help me, God." And it was right after receiving her official certificate of citizenship, and with her husband Thomas by her side, Tien Ly felt closer to home. "I'm so happy, my husband can tell you," an emotional Tien Ly told us, tearfully. "She's happy to be here in America because of the opportunity it represents," her husband Thomas finished the thought for her. Also becoming U-S citizens this morning, were four sisters from the country of Nigeria. By Calvin Sneed
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Made in Our Hometown: Popcorn Pantry Makes G
These are the sounds and smells of a night at the movies, but for one Hixson business it's their bread and BUTTER. The Popcorn Pantry isn't your average snack stop. Instead they focus on high-end, gourmet goodies in flavors like dill pickle, rainbow or southwest jalapeno. "When we get a new customer in and they say 'Eewww dill pickle! I don't think I like that' and then they will taste it and it will be their favorite," says managing consultant Andrea Hardaway. "It's one of the most rewarding feelings to see the smile on someone's face." The magic starts in the kitchen with hot oil pouring into the popper, and an added kick to the kernels. After just a few minutes, when the timing and temperature are just right, the popper overflows. Then it's a fight to weed out the pieces that are too petite for the packs of popcorn. But the popped popcorn is far from the finished product. Once it's in the mixer, a mixture of cheese, butter and spices are added in a unique process that the Pantry says lives up to its promise. "Our popcorn is not coated with flavor," Hardaway says, "it's infused so with every bite you are going to get that gourmet flavor you are paying for." The recipes are endless, with some initial mistakes ending up as customer favorites. "There's actually one out there that was an oops!" employee Kristy Ball says. "We messed up on it and it didn't work but we tried it and it turned out to be great and people loved it." So whether it's a traditional movie theater butter like this batch, this sweet shop hopes that every bite takes you to a place, far from their Hixson storefront. "One of the things I like is some of these flavors take you back to childhood," says Hardaway. "If you are a Snickers fan, an Oreo fan, it takes you back. We've got flavors that taste very similar to Cracker Jacks." For more information, click here to visit the Popcorn Pantry's Facebook page. By: Latricia Thomas
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Jurors Shown Video of Murder in Day 2 of S
Whitfield County jurors watching a murder unfold on surveillance video Tuesday in the trial of Skyy Raven Marie Mims. The 10-camera footage from Kanku's Express in Dalton is about two hours long and shows gas station clerk DK Chaudhari moving to close a kitchen door to get away from his killer. But he didn't get the door shut fast enough. The video shows the killer rush in, drop an airsoft gun and start stabbing DK. The victim tried to kick off the suspect, but it wasn't enough. Everything is silently captured on surveillance video at the Dalton gas station. Mims allegedly puts down the knife and moves to duct tape DK's eyes and mouth. The footage shows the killer leaning over the victim and putting hands over his face to suffocate him. The process goes on for about 6 and half minutes. DK moves a few times and each time the killer returns to continue smothering him. Chilling words from the store owner would not have made a difference, according to testimony. "If somebody comes with a robbery, just show two hands up and just let him know, 'go ahead, whatever you need, take the money whatever.' Don't argue with anybody," said Kanu Chaudhar, the Kanku's gas station owner. Whitfield County Detective Chris Guay told the jury that the suspect wears a white hoodie and white shoes during the killing, and this is after the killer changes from an all-black outfit when coming into the store. "There are blind spots, even with cameras, as many as they had, you still could not cover every location," said Guay. While DK is dying on the floor, customers continue coming and going, unaware of what is happening so close behind a closed door. The killer waits for them to leave before going behind the counter and grabbing the lottery tickets and several hundred dollars from the register. The suspect returns to the kitchen, packs up the stolen goods, tells a customer, witness Shannon Emberson, that the store is closed for a family emergency before waiting to leave the store. Prosecutors said Mims wanted the tickets to further her music career. Parts of the suspect's face can be seen in the footage when the suspect comes inside the store in black. That's what detectives used to get customers to try and identify the suspect. "I went to knock on the 'employee only' door since there was no clerk, and I heard someone yell 'Family emergency. Store closed. You have to leave,'" said Emberson. The jury will return to hear more testimony Wednesday at 9 a.m. Prosecutors said they expect the trial to last through the week. By Briona Arradondo See also: Raw Surveillance Video: the Murder of D.K. Chadhouri, March 9th, 2014 raw video of Skyy Mims' first police interview.
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Made in Cleveland: M&M's Iconic Candy
By: Latricia Thomas The secret behind the most popular letter in the league of candy can be found inside the Mars plant in Cleveland. To make the 300 tons of milk chocolate used to make these MM's every day, 13 truck loads of sugar are pumped into the plant a week. So it's no surprise that the first thing you smell is chocolate. Employees call it a beautiful part of the job.One machine molds the milk chocolate center of the 300 million MM's made daily, including peanut, almond, peanut butter, milk chocolate, and specially flavored varieties. There are more than 2 miles of conveyers high above the plant, carrying the candy to the next part of the 16-hour process. From cooling tunnels to huge drums where the first of dozens of sugar shell layers are applied, the candy makes its way through the plant. The color is built into the sugar, and then the extra layers add the crunch.After a quick polish, it's time to blend the rainbow of candy into the perfectly mixed bag, worthy of any grocery store, movie theater or picky Mars employees. We'll always go and pick up a bag of MM's and see if they are made in Cleveland, technical site manager Ed Ward says. If they are not made in Cleveland, they won't buy them.So what makes an MM so iconic, that M of course. But that process is so cool we can't even show you how they do it, creating the classic candy that's promised to melt in your mouth, not in your hand for three decades.For more on Mars, click here to visit their website.
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The Buddy Bench
It's an idea that originated in Germany, was brought to the United States by a student in Pennsylvania, and now it's in Signal Mountain at Nolan Elementary School. The "Buddy Bench" is a simple concept with goals to create friendships on the playground. Many kids claim recess to be one of the best parts of elementary school, next to lunch. For some kids however, this is not the case. aI am a new student to Nolan so I know how it feels to be lonely at recess and trust me it is boring,a said Jake Hanners, a now fourth grader at Nolan Elementary School. Rewind about seven months. Becky Learyas third grade class at Nolan Elementary School had an assignment to write persuasive essays. The essays needed to focus on something that would help the school be a better place. aLast year we had like six new kids in our class from all over one came from Indiana, so they didn't know anyone in Tennessee,a said Georgia Sharp, fourth grader at Nolan Elementary School. That's when Leary stumbled upon the "Buddy Bench" online. The aBuddy Bencha is an idea originating in Germany and then brought to Pennsylvania by a second grade student named Christian Bucks. The concept is simple. The goal of the bench is to help new or shy kids with the sometimes daunting task of making new friends. aAt recess if a child has no friends to play with they would sit on the buddy bench and someone would hopefully ask them to play or if two people were on the buddy bench the two people could play together,a said Hanners. aIt was a no brainer, everyone said we want this and the letters I think shared that intrinsic motivation, their compassion,a said Becky Leary third grade teacher at Nolan Elementary. aIt makes me feel sad and stuff because they don't get to play with friends and everyone else does,a said Nathan Wofford, now a fourth grader at Nolan Elementary School. aIf kids don't have any friends they can go to the buddy bench and get happy,a said Summer Triplett, fourth grader at Nolan Elementary School. Teachers also hope it will teach kids how to solve problems on their own. If friends are fighting, teachers will send them to the aBuddy Bencha to try and work it out together. aWe are helping guide them into better ways in handling conflicts on the playground, and just initiating care and compassion for someone else and to have some empathy,a said Leary. Leary brought the letters to the PTA and together with school administrators the aBuddy Bencha became a reality. There were already two benches on both playgrounds - so one bench on each became designated the aBuddy Bench.a They painted it bright green and put a banner - displaying friendship with a knight and dragon, representing Nolan Elementary School. By: Lauren St. Germain
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Convicted Murderer Wants New Trial
by John Madewell One of Chattanooga's most notorious gang members appeared in court asking for a new trial. Convicted murderer Mike Daniels claims his trial attorney, Jesse Dalton III, was ineffective and didn't allow him to testify.Hamilton County Criminal Court Judge Rebecca Stern said from the bench, "I mean the trial was not the problem."But there is a more pressing issue connected to his request for a new trial, a late filing to the Tennessee Supreme Court for another trial.Daniels has spent the last four years in prison. He's serving a life sentence plus 23 years for the 2006 death of Adrian Patton.Daniels didn't actually pull the trigger. But during the 2008 trial, the jury decided Daniels ordered fellow Skyline Bloods gang member Timothy Evans to carry out the hit.In today's hearing, Dalton defended his strategy. Daniels was a well known gang member. Dalton testified he tried to establish his rank wasn't high enough to order this type of hit.From the bench, Judge Stern said, " I don't think, given the evidence, that his strategy was ineffective at trial is the way I see it."After the conviction, a motion for a new trial and appeal were both denied. Dalton took it to the next step, the Tennessee Supreme Court. But he missed the filing deadline by a day. That's at the heart of Daniels desire for a new trial.Daniels' post-conviction attorney, Amanda Dunn, said, "It's a very unfortunate situation that Mr. Daniels faces." Dunn continued, "As a result, he will never have an opportunity for the Supreme Court to review his case. And he is serving a life sentence plus years. We're hoping the court will see this is a true miscarriage of justice and offer him an opportunity to have a fair trial."Judge Stern is taking the case under advisement and plans to issue a ruling by October 29.
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Funeral Home Director Weighs in on Youth Crime
If Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was alive today, he might be asking this question: Chattanooga - Why are so many of your young black people dying in this town?It's a plague upon our community and one that funeral directors know all too well. Lamunta Williams should be somewhere playing sports or getting ready for his high school prom. Instead, he lies buried at the Highland Memorial Gardens cemetery. He was gunned down last March only a few blocks away from Howard High at just 16-years-old.Then, two weeks ago, Deontrey Southers was shot dead inside of his home. He was 13-years-old and played football at East Lake Academy.Your heart pleads and bleeds because of the fact that you can look at your son and you'll say, 'that could have been my child, says funeral director John Taylor. As a funeral director, John Taylor is used to staring death in the face. But, he can't get over how many young people he's having to bury these days - far too often children caught in the middle of drug or gang violence. Every last one of them has affected my life. When I look at how young they are and that it could have been me, says John Taylor. The body count over the past 3 years is 13. Over a dozen children under the age of 19 who have been shot and killed in our streets.Mr. Taylor says these deaths are devastating to the black community and that it's time for everyone to come together to try and stop all the senseless violence.That is my goal. Everytime I go through this, my heart goes out, but yet, we see that we still have a quite a bit of work to do, says John Taylor. Pastor Paul McDaniel is one of those people trying to make a difference, but when he took in one young man to try and help him, the teen turned around and used his church as a recruiting ground to enlist gang members.It's a hurting thing, especially when you watch a boy or girl develops, and sees some promise in that person, says local pastor Paul McDaniel. And these days, those who pull the trigger on these crimes are getting younger. Already in my time on the bench, I‚„ve had a 12-year-old appear who's charged with attempted first degree murder, several 13-year-olds were charged with serious gun crimes, says Juvenile Court Judge Robert Philyaw. It leaves victims like Lamunta and Deontrey dead in the wake of the epidemic of a youth gone wild in Chattanooga. By Jerry Askin
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Teenage Murder Victim Laid To Rest
Family and friends said their final goodbyes Monday afternoon to an 8th grade student at East Lake Academy.Deontrey Southers was shot inside of his home last week and died on his way to the hospital. Last week's shooting prompted several Hamilton County schools to go on lock out in fear of retaliation in nearby neighborhoods. And even Mayor Andy Berke weighed in saying it's time to change the cycle of senseless shootings.A mother forced to bury her 13-year-old son, friends now without a classmate, and family grieving after a murder, our cameras were there as hundreds of people filed in one by one at the funeral home chapel to pay respects to Deontrey Southers, known as Trey. Because he's lying in a casket, due to someone else, and something that had nothing to do with him, says Deontrey's cousin Anqueligue Owens. We saw lots of hugs, tears, and high emotions from people still trying to make sense of this tragedy. His cousin says he was a star-football player, enjoyed basketball and adds it's a shame he lost his life so soon. He didn't deserve it, he was not a part of a gang, he was not a bad child, he was just a normal, happy, all go round child, and it hurts very badly, says Owens. It's a shame that a child so young and has so much life in him, he had a full life ahead, all of this violence needs to stop, says Maria Johnson.9-year-old Jarvis Crew grew up with Trey. He told NewsChannel 9 it's going to be tough moving forward.,It's like he was my first friend that I ever had and he was always there for me and was my best friend, says Souther's younger cousin, Jarvis Crew. For years, Jarvis Crew lived next door to Trey and saw him as like a big brother.At school, me and him would have breakfast and lunch and we would sit at the same table at breakfast, says Jarvis Crew. Monday, we saw at least six police cars outside Trey's funeral to help with security.Chester Heathington believes the wave of black on black violence makes funerals like this one all too common. It's just like a day outing for these kids to come to a funeral, says Heathington. For now, Trey's cousin is praying for justice.If anybody knows anything, please come forward and speak up, because he did not deserve this, says Angelique Owens. After his funeral, Deontrey Southers was laid to rest at the Forest Hill Cemetery in St Elmo.By Jerry Askin
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Suspected Thieves Caught After Stealing 6 Cars From Dealership
Thieves steal a quarter of a million dollars in cars from one Marion County dealership, but owners manage to track most of them down with the help of OnStar. Kimball Police say it's one for the books. The police department has dealt with at least two of these before in the past, but nothing this major, says Sergeant Chris Webb.It all started on New Years Eve when thieves broke into the Gentry Chevrolet, Buick, GMC dealership to steal several keys, but it wasn't until two days later that thieves came back to cash in on their loot. After realizing the vehicles had been stolen, General Manager Tom Thomas called police and his corporate company to activate a special piece of technology. We had three new Camaros and two new trucks and one used truck. OnStar can track the vehicle and communicate with law enforcement and tell them exactly where the vehicle is.Police jumped into action They had started tracking the cars probably 20 minutes after we contacted them. Within an hour we had recovered the first one and they just started falling in place after that, says Sergeant Webb.One of them was caught inside one of the Camaros that was stolen from here, the other one showed up during the investigation, and another one was caught inside another vehicle that was stolen from a dealership in Cleveland. Thomas remains in disbelief. [We] had them all rounded up in a matter of three hours. Started off pretty bad, but ended with a happy ending.The dealership is still hoping to recover one more car that's a 2014 white GMC truck. Along with Christopher Lyn Coffelt, both David Andrew Jones and Brittany M. Trail have been arrested for theft over 60-thousand dollars.by Mikaya Thurmond
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New Casino in Cherokee County, NC Opens
The Harrah's Cherokee Valley River Casino and Hotel opened, Monday. The doors to the casino opened around 1:30 Monday afternoon. A celebration for the community of a business creating more than 1,000 jobs. "All the jobs, that's exciting in itself, creating 1100 jobs in this region, of the 1100 about 850 are from this area," Lumpy Lambert, the General Manager for the casino said. Traffic getting into the casino was backed up for miles. Hundreds waited hours to be the some of the first inside, including Amy Miller, from Cleveland, Tenn. "We really like it, we live about an hour and a half from here so it's going to make it really convenient," Miller said. "We came to spend some money! and win a lot!" she said. The eastern band of the Cherokee Indians owns the land. They use their federal trust land to build casinos like the one they have in Cherokee, North Carolina about 2 hours away. Principal Chief Michell Hicks explains, "We purchased the land from a tribal member about 2 years ago and obviously began the planning stage. It's a beautiful area. just seeing the views, it really takes you back." He says the money they make here goes back to members of the tribe. "Basically a dividend every 6 months to all tribal members which is over 15,000," Hicks said. The Cherokee County Economic Development Director says the casino will bring more than 10,000 cars to the area every day, which is inviting for retailers. "Those indirect jobs we're looking at probably 500 or so and then just continue the growth in that tourism and service sector of the economy," Josh Carpenter said. Even other businesses in town are getting excited. Jeremiah Smith owns Doyle's Cedar Hill. He will now offer a shuttle from the casino to his fine dining restaurant. "All of a sudden I thought we're not ready for this and we need to get ready and hire some people because I think we're going to get a lot busier than expected," Smith said. General Manager Lambert says they plan to fill and create more jobs in the near future.
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