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WMUF/WLZK News                                                                          

From News Director Tim Alsobrooks, Assistant and Weekend News Director Shannon McFarlin

Dickson Co. Defeats Patriots

Paris, Tenn-Dickson Co. beat the girls team by a score of 62-30, with Sealy Hudson the high scorer for the Patriots with five points.

Score for the boys game was Dickson, 71; Henry Co. 47, with Bo Donaldson the high scorer for the Patriots with 13.

County Officials Complete Leadership Training


    Mike Wilson                                                     Donna Craig


Knoxville–Henry County County Clerk Donna Craig and Circuit Court Clerk Mike Wilson were among 42 county and municipal government leaders who successfully completed the Local Government Leadership Program (LGLP) hosted by the University of Tennessee Institute for Public Service’s (IPS) Naifeh Center for Effective Leadership.

UT faculty and private consultants led the three-day, invitation-only program that focused on personal leadership, stress management and ethics, and improving government effectiveness and efficiency. The program concluded Nov. 15, 2012.

Wilson said, “This was an honor for me and I truly enjoyed the entire program. Exposure to this level of information and the interaction with other county officials has proven beneficial for me. Plus, it provides examples of best practices that you can bring back home and implement. I really appreciate the LGLP inviting me and providing for the cost of the program."

Craig agreed, noting that the program was inspiring to her as an elected official. "Continuing to improve my knowledge of local government and developing as a leader are two of my highest priorities. This leadership program helped me understand how to better manage the many aspects of my position as County Clerk. I met a lot of people from across the state who manage many of the same issues I do."

River Conference Tourney To Air on WLZK

Paris, Tenn.-Our radio station WLZK 94.1 will air all the action from the River Conference Tournament as it begins this weekend at Gamlin Gymnasium at Henry County High School.

The tournament is presented by ClickPeppers.com. Play commences Saturday morning at noon, with air time beginning at 11:45 a.m. as Harrelson girls face Camden. Next up is the Harrelson boys team which faces Stewart Co. at 1:15 p.m.

Next up are the Henry girls versus Houston Co. at 2:30 p.m., followed by Henry boys versus Houston Co. at 3:45 p.m.

The next round will be played Thursday, January 24, with the tournament ending on Saturday, Jan. 26.


Tickets Still on Sale for Blind Boys of Alabama


Huntingdon, Tenn.-Tickets are still on sale for the Blind Boys of Alabama appearance at The Dixie on Saturday, January 19 at 7:30 pm.

The Blind Boys of Alabama are Inductees of the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and they have earned praises for their remarkable interpretations of everything from traditional gospel favorites to contemporary spiritual material by acclaimed songwriters such as Curtis Mayfield, Ben Harper, Eric Clapton, Prince, and Tom Waits.

Ticket price: $25/person (plus tax)

For more information contact The Dixie’s box office at 731-986-2100 or order online at www.dixiepac.net.

Broadway Returns to Lee to Premiere Weekend of Jan 26-27

Paris, Tenn.-Broadway Returns to Lee, a fund raiser for the Lee School Academy for the Arts, premieres with two performances: dinner and entertainment on Saturday, Jan 26 at 6:00pm and matinee with dessert on Sunday,Jan 27 at 3 :00 pm.

Dinner tickets can be purchased for a minimum contribution of $25 and matinee tickets for a minimum contribution of $15. Tickets are available at The Iron Place, Jack Jones Flowers and Gifts, and Merrison's. Only 100 seats are available for each performance so act quickly.

You may also call Lee School at 642-3411 and leave a message or contact Board members. The production is under the direction of Peggy Williams and features the local talent of Paris' wonderful musicians.


State Unemployment at 7.6 Percent; Lowest Since 2008

Nashville, Tenn.- Tennessee Commissioner of Labor & Workforce Development Karla Davis announced today Tennessee’s unemployment rate for December was 7.6 percent and remained constant from the November revised rate of 7.6 percent. The national unemployment rate for December 2012 was 7.8 percent and was also unchanged from the previous month.

Economic Summary:

· Tennessee's December unemployment rate remained constant at 7.6 percent and is the lowest Tennessee unemployment rate since October 2008.

· The number of unemployed persons (235,700) is the lowest since October 2008.

· The number of employed persons (2,879,600) is the highest since March 2008.

· Over the past year, Tennessee's unemployment rate declined from 8.5 percent to 7.6 percent (-0.9 percentage point) while the national rate declined from 8.5 percent to 7.8 percent (-0.7 percentage point).

· Total nonfarm employment increased 6,000 jobs from November to December, with increases in leisure/hospitality, manufacturing, and mining/logging/construction. There were decreases in administrative/support/waste services, retail trade, and state government.

Law Enforcement Knocks Down Barricade for Arrest

Paris, Tenn.-Law enforcement from the Paris Police Department, with assistant from the sheriff's department, were forced to knock down a barricaded door to make an arrest for domestic assault at 1450 N. Market St.

Officers were called to the apartment on a report of an assault in progress and Sgt. Michael Ramos heard screams coming from the apartment. No one answered at the door, however. Even after management tried to enter with a key, entry could not be gained because the door was barricaded.

After getting permission from District Attorney Hansel McCadams and Assistant DA Paul Hessing, officers knocked down the door. After handcuffing and separating the parties, a weapon and 13 rounds of ammunition were found.

In the course of questioning, officers determined that Lauren Stamps, age 22 of that address, was the primary aggressor and she was arrested.

Officers participating in the arrest were Sgt. Ramos, Lt. John Brewer, Ptl. Derek Greenhill, Patrolman Jamie James, Patrolman Amber Roaten and Deputy Wayne Fuqua.

In a separate incident, Henry County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Christina Barker of 650 Old McKenzie Highway for simple possession and possession of drug paraphernalia after seeing her car stopped in the roadway on Palestine Rd. after midnight Friday morning. After an odor of marijuana was detected in the vehicle, consent to search was obtained and a baggie of marijuana plus two pipes, a canister with trace marijuana and two packs of rolling papers were found.

In another incident, Paris Police arrested Sean Gilbert, age 41 of 501 W. Wood St. for aggravated assault. Officers responded to a fight at the home and determined that roommates had been fighting over a lost address book.

Sickle Cell Blood Drive Set for Bethel

McKenzie, Tenn.- The American Red Cross has partnered with Bethel University to raise awareness about a condition that is prominent within the community but rarely spoken about. Sickle Cell Anemia affects more than 80,000 people in the U.S., 98 percent of whom are African American. This blood disorder is an inherited disease that causes red blood cells to form in an abnormal crescent shape, which doesn’t move easily through the blood vessels. When sickle-shaped cells block small blood vessels, blood flow decreases to that part of the body. Tissue that does not receive normal blood flow eventually gets damaged, causing pain and organ damage.

The American Red Cross is holding the first Sickle Cell blood drive in the Bethel Community on January 23, 2013 from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. at Bethel University.

To make your appointment for this blood drive, call 1-800-RED CROSS or visit www.redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code: 1158

All presenting donors will be entered to win a $1,000 home improvement gift card and a tablet computer valued at $500!

This special blood drive is part of our Blue Tag initiative. To ensure that your blood donation goes to help a Sickle Cell patient, please identify yourself as African American or Black and allow the blood collection staff to place a blue tag on your blood donation. The blue tag will notify our processing lab that this blood donation is designated for the Sickle Cell Donor Program.
If your blood is not a match for the Sickle Cell Donor Program, it is stored until it is needed. If the blood approaches its expiration date and has not been needed by a Sickle Cell patient, it will be used by another patient in need. The American Red Cross strives to ensure every blood donation helps a patient in need.

HC BOE Hears Updates on Adult Learning Center

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Board of Education met on Thursday night heard from Donna Winders, supervisor of the Adult Learning Center as she gave an update on some of the work that the center has been doing. She told the board that Henry County’s Adult Learning Center served 7% of its potential of almost 6700 in the county without diplomas last year. Winders said that is the 4th highest percent in the state, only behind Williamson, Knox, and Hamilton Counties, which have much bigger populations in them.

Winders explained that the Adult Learning Center is trying to continue to adapt to ever changing technology and the GED test is changing in 2013 and graduates will have to learn computer skills. The Adult Learning Center administers the GED, helps with students and parents study for composite tests like the ACT, and other things. The age range for Henry Countians who received diplomas thru the Adult Learning Center this past year was from 18 to 62.

Miles did tell board members challenges will be faced in the near future because the state has asked all counties to cut back some of its funding from Adult Learning Centers.

Henry County School System Now Has SROs at Every School

The board was also introduced to new School Resource officers that are at Henry and Harrelson giving each school in the system one. Director of Schools Sam Miles said that thanks to the sheriff’s office, they have managed to get one officer for each school, whereas before Deputy Bruce Alexander would rotate among the elementary schools while Sgt. Calvin Dumas and Sgt. Buford Taylor were at Grove and Henry County High School respectively. Alexander is now the primary SRO at Lakewood.

Principals welcomed Officers ML Bailey as Harrelson’s SRO and Rodney Littleton as Henry’s SRO. Sheriff Monte Belew told the board the sheriff’s office is ready to help the school system with anything at any time and are glad to get SROs in each school now.

Miles told board members at the beginning of the semester teachers, administrators, and staff met and discussed school safety initiatives. Miles said there are some things that will be updated in the future to make protocols and procedures work better.

The board also approved for three students to go the Tennessee School Boards Association SCOPE Conference. This is where students take part in school board type meetings and discuss many issues involving education, leadership and more. Miles said once the students return they will come back to the school board and share what they did and learned at SCOPE conference.

Metro Crime Unit Nets Arrest for Meth Manufacture

Paris, Tenn.- According to a press release from the Henry County’s Sheriff’s Office, officers from the Metro Crime Unit along with officers from the Sheriff’s Department and Paris Police Department conducted a search of a residence at 313 Jackson Street Apt. A in Paris. During the search officers located a back pack containing several items and ingredients that are used in the cooking process and manufacturing process of methamphetamine.

The backpack contained liquid fire, coleman fuel, ammonia nitrate granules, a pill grinder, drain cleaner, tubing and funnels. Arrested on scene was John Franklin Bates. Bates was charged with promotion of methamphetamine manufacture and bond was set at $1000.


MLK Day To Be Honored With New, Traditional Events

The unity march always draws a large crowd, as seen in this photo from 2012. Center is Brother Andre Richardson, who is chair of this year's event. He is flanked by Rev. Steve Gallimore, left, and Rev. James Travis, right. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.-Monday is Martin Luther King, Jr., Day and the Paris-Henry County Ministerial Alliance has scheduled a day of events--several of which are new--for that day. The events will include new locations for the prayer breakfast, march to the courthouse and leadership luncheon.

Brother Andre Richardson is chair of the day's events and said the prayer breakfast will be held at 8 a.m. at the Central Services Building at 55 Jones Bend Rd. That will be followed by the Unity March from Mt. Zion Baptist Church on Rison Street to the courthouse at 10 a.m. Following that, the leadership luncheon will be held from 1-2 p.m. at Grace Episcopal Church's Ketcham Hall.

A Youth Basketball Tournament will be held at Central Community Service Center (1 -4 pm), and an Evening Service is set for the Krider Performing Arts Center (7:00).

"Our hope is to encourage all residents of Paris and Henry County to participate in all the activities as to promote unity in our community," Richardson said.

Here is the schedule for the day:

The Prayer Breakfast will be held at the Central Community Service Building 55 Jones Bend Road. Breakfast will be served at 7 a.m. The Program will begin at 8 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. The Following Ministers and Community leaders will be leading the program:

Scriptures read by
PES Principal Howard McGill, Inman Principal Jason Scarbrough,
Grove Vic. Principal Michele Webb, and HCHS Principal Lennis McFerrin.

Prayers offered by
Rev. John Smith (Fairview Baptist Church), Father Krzysztos Rusin (Holy Cross Catholic Church)
Rev. Thomas Taylor ( Union Grove Baptist Church), Rev. John Dandridge ( Quinn Chapel A.M.E)

Messages on Prayer by
Rev. Fred Shackleford (SpringHill Baptist ) , Elder James Travis ( Church of The Living God #72)
Rev. Rob Martin ( 1st United Methodist), Rev. Kenneth Humphreys ( Cedar Hill Baptist Church )

Community Leaders include:
Mayor Sam Tharpe, Paris Police Chief Charles Elizondo, PSSD Superintendent Mike Brown,

The March to the Court House will start at 10:00 am from the Mt. Zion Baptist Church 304 Rison Street. The march will proceed from Rison Street down Market Street and End at the Court House.
The March will include all citizens of Paris/Henry County, The Henry County Sheriff Dept. Honor Guard, Elected Officials, a County-wide youth choir, The Paris Fire Dept. , The Paris Police Dept.

The Rally at the Court House begins approximately 10:30 a.m. Community Leader to head the program are; Sheriff Monte’ Belew (Henry County Sheriff Dept.), Dr. Sam Miles ( Henry County School System Director), Rep. Tim Wigrua (State Representative ).
Keynote Speakers for the Court House Rally will Be: 1. Judge Vicki S. Snyder (General Sessions) & 2. Judge Donald Parrish (Circuit Court)

There will be a Leadership Luncheon at 1:00 p.m. Held at Grace Episcopal Ketchum Hall XXX Poplar Street. The Luncheon honors all 1st Responders of Paris/Henry County including Policemen, Firemen, EMT Workers, and Rescue Squad Workers.

There will also be a Basketball tournament for the Youth Of Henry County held at the Central Community Service Center Gymnasium from 1:00p.m. – 4:00 p.m. . All youth are invited to participate.

The Day’s Events will Conclude with an Evening Program at the Krider Performing Arts Center 650 Volunteer Drive. Community Leaders will include Henry County Mayor Brent Greer , Paris Fire Chief Michael Williams, Post Master Clara Williams, Rev. James TwilBeck ( Director of Missions for Western District Baptist Assoc.) Music will be provided by HCHS Madrigals and The YOUTH UNITED MASS CHOIR of Henry County and Mr. Imari Thompson.

The Keynote Speaker for the Evening will be Paris Native and CEO of Brandon Technology Consulting Mr. Leonard Tharpe of Gallatin, TN.

Also The 1st ever “Drum Major For Justice Award” will Be given to Paris Resident Clarence Clark for a Lifetime of Oustanding Leadership in the area of Civil Rights.

An Essay Contest was held for all Students of Paris/Henry County School Systems. The Essay Theme was “Training a New Generation of Leaders for the Civil Rights Challenges of the 21st Century” . There where 640 entries from students in Both School Systems. First and Second Place winners where selected in the following grade categories: K-2,3-5,6-8,9,10-11,12. The winners will present their Essays throughout the day’s events. The Winning Senior will be presented with a $300.00 Scholarship.

Photo Showcase Set

The 21st annual Photo Showcase will be March 3-April 4 at W.G.Rhea Library. For those interested in entering a photo, the entry form and rules are on the Paris-Henry County Arts Council website at www.phcarts.com. For more information, please contact the Arts Council office.

Local Artists' Works Displayed at Burger King

Paris, Tenn.-The current art on display for January at the Paris Burger King features Henry County High School Artists Jessica Thompson, Grace Hassell and Katherine Summers.

The Paris-Henry Co. Arts Council asks the public to be sure and tell the management how much you appreciate what they are doing to promote our local artists.

HCMC Hires First Physician Assistant in Emergency Room

Daphne Foust is the new Certified Physician’s Assistant assigned to HCMC Emergency Room. (HCMC Photo).

Paris, TN – Henry County Medical Center welcomes Daphne Foust, PA as the first Certified Physician's Assistant to work in the HCMC emergency room as the hospital expands its emergency care capabilities.

She has been a PA for 25 years all over the US. West Tennessee is home so she and her husband, Alan, have moved “back home", as she said. They live in Springville. He is retired but still raises cattle.

“I received my certification classification six years ago and I will take the certification test every six years; it's coming up soon," Foust said. “Everyone has been very welcoming and nice. I’m really excited to join the HCMC ER Team.”

Physician’s Assistants and Nurse Practitioners will see patients who are non-emergent, and will assist the physicians with more complex health care issues in the ER. For example, if you have a minor injury or illness, Foust will most likely provide your plan of care; however, if the physician is busy with other patients, she is quite capable of initiating a treatment regimen that will be reviewed by the physician when he/she is available.

“Ms. Foust is a great addition to our team and will assist us in providing top-notch emergency care for patients in Henry and surrounding counties,” according to Toni Gordon, Director of the Emergency Department. “Our patient population has steadily risen during the past few years which led us to the addition of a PA. Our goal is to continue providing quality and efficient care.”

Gas Board Approves Purchase of CNG Vehicle, NG Fueling Station

Paris, Tenn.- The board of commissioners for the Paris Henry County Public Utility District met on Tuesday afternoon and approved buying a 2013 Compressed Natural Gas Vehicle and the fueling system for a Natural Gas Fill Station that will be used in house for the district.

General Manager Tae Eaton told board members that Goldman Circle in Jackson has been awarded the state contract for the sale of CNGV and there are no bids needed to order from a state contract. The board decided to go with a 2013 Ford Crew Cab with short bed.

The vehicle included the conversion for natural gas, but was a dual fuel truck, meaning it also had a tank for regular gasoline. Eaton said this allows the vehicle to travel for long distances and switch over to regular gas should there be no Natural Gas Filling Station nearby. The cost of the vehicle was just under $33,000. It will be delivered to the system in 8-10 weeks.

The board then approved the purchase of the FuelMaker FM-Q8 natural gas fueling station in the amount of $56,000. Eaton said this would be a flexible type filling station installed at the bay at their warehouse.

Its flexible in that mostly it is a slow fill natural gas station, meaning you fill vehicles for 8 hours, usually overnight. It does however, allow 15 gallons to be filled in just a few minutes. If the fast fill option is used, the filling station then must be back on slow fill the next several hours. The natural gas filling station should be in and running in about 8 weeks or so as well.

Natural Gas Vehicle Expo To be Held April 3 in Nashville

More from Tuesday’s Gas board meeting saw general manager Tae Eaton inform the board about a Natural Gas Vehicle Expo that will be held at LP Field in Nashville on April 3. Eaton said the district will send out letters to local government officials, other utilities, and managers of industries to the expo. They will have 40 vendors of Natural Gas Vehicles on hand and more at the expo to continue to gauge interest in other agencies moving towards using them. Eaton said they will have big trucks, cars, buses, vans, and more to show all aspects of transportation currently available in CNGVs.

The state of Tennessee currently has 6 Natural gas Fueling Stations located primarily along the I-40 corridor with two in Memphis and Nashville and one in Knoxville. Jackson is in the process of building a NG fuel station that will be situated right along the interstate. Chattanooga also has one NG fuel station. That compares to 8 stations in Alabama, 0 in Kentucky, 12 in Missouri, and 23 in Georgia.

In other action the gas board approved a payment of just over $28,203 to Natural Gas Services for the gas main extension work. Eaton also told the board that due to cold weather in December the district managed to finish in the black and with a cold January so far, he thinks they are on the way to getting out of the red by the end of the fiscal year.

Volunteers For Freedom Tea Party To have Guest Speaker Thurs.

Paris, Tenn.- Richard Archie of the Tennessee Firearms Association will be the speaker for the Volunteers for Freedom Tea Party meeting this Thursday January 17th at 6:45pm at the Paris Civic Center. According to the release, Archie is well versed in all aspects of the 2nd amendments and firearms issue and is especially astute in knowledge of the constitution of the State of Tennessee. Everyone is invited to the meeting. For more information call Kert Blackwood at 336-7423.

PSSD Board Meeting Centers Around SROs in Schools

Paris, Tenn.- Paris Special School District board members, principals, and officers all expressed their thoughts and appreciation for the presence of officers this semester in Rhea, Inman and Paris Elementary at the board meeting Tuesday night. Superintendant of the PSSD Mike Brown told the board that they are seeking a long term solution involving possible school resource officers in the system.

Brown went over some of the steps that they system has done or will be doing as they seek a long term solution. Brown said every school has gone over its emergency plans and safety protocols and made some changes. Also they have decided to update areal photos of the buildings and land surrounding each school and provide those to law enforcement and dispatch.

Brown said plans are to also partner with E-911 and BPU to allow 911 to monitor images of the schools. He said the PSSD will provide a computer at 911 and use BPU’s fiber to send images to 911 of the schools to monitor. This would be very important during severe weather and other situations.

Also, the system plans to have an expert assessment team from Safe Haven International, to come and do a study of the schools on their safety protocols and procedures and walk thru each school in April.

Each principal introduced the officer that was currently working in their schools Michelle Brewer at Rhea, Eddie Crosser at Paris Elementary, and Jordan Klutts at Inman. Each officer told board members thanks for allowing them to be in the position and it has been very rewarding to them and they’ve received many thanks from parents because they are there.

Citizen Amy Davis address the board thanking them, Brown, and the Paris Police department for putting officers in the schools to start this semester. She said she would like to see the board make sure the presence of officers are on the long term plans.

Brown told the board a long term decision on SROs in the PSSD needs to involve well thought out plans on safety and include real reforms, not just officers, to ensure the safety of the students. He told board members they would receive a specific plan and recommendation on the SRO issue by May’s board meeting.

Weekend Backpack Program Up and Running in PSSD

Donna Vaughn Shows off a

sample of the food that goes

in backpacks on Friday.

(Tim Alsobrooks photo)

More from Tuesday night’s Paris Special School saw Donna Vaughn give a presentation on the weekend backpack program, which they instituted for the first time last Friday for 206 kids. The weekend backpack program is where snacks are sent home with students on Fridays to make sure they have food over the weekend.

Vaughn explained that to get this program started, they established those in the most needs who might not be getting regular meals over the weekends at home.
They decided all Pre-K students and 107 kindergartens would be the first recipients of the weekend backpack snacks. She said they sent letter home with students explaining to parents the reason for the snacks and they did have 9 refusals.

Vaughn said they are partnering with Lakeway IGA on the program and receive the food and storage bags the food goes in at Lakeway IGA’s cost. Also Lakeway IGA brings the food to Rhea and parent volunteer help pack the bags.

Vaughn said each pack cost $2.57 and they plan on sending it home every other weekend with these 206 students now thru May which totals to around $5K. Funding has come from donations and monies given thru the Board of Public Utilities Project Round-up and will fund this semester. They will likely get funds from Helping Hands that can help start funding the program next fall.

Vaughn told the board she would like to see the program grow next year to every Friday instead of every other Friday and also in the future include more students. Superintendant of the PSSD Mike Brown explained to board members they will look at ways to supplement the program at budget time. Anyone who would like to give donations should call the school and get more information.

Board Approves Bullying Policy Changes and TSBA Resolutions

In other business on Tuesday, the PSSD board approved changes to a board policy outlining definitions and descriptions of bullying, harassment, and discrimination. The policy included cyber bullying and defined the specific definitions of what could be considered bullying.

The board also approved three suggested resolutions from the Tennessee School Boards Association. They included opposing any legislation to create statewide authorization for charter schools that would bypass local boards of education; opposing legislation to create a voucher program in Tennessee that would divert money intended for public education to private schools; and opposing the idea of going back to superintendent elections.

Bloodmobile to be at First Baptist Church in Paris 3:30-7pm Wed.

Paris, Tenn.- All eligible donors are encouraged to give blood as the Lifeline Bloodmobile will be at the First Baptist Church in Paris from 3:30-7pm Wednesday January 16th. There is a current critical need for all blood types for patients in West Tennessee. All types are needed and supply is dangerously low, with O negative being needed most urgently. Be sure and bring photo ID with you when you come to give blood.

Tuesday Night's Basketball Game with West Creek Postponed

Paris, Tenn.- Pending winter weather alerts have caused the postponing of tonight’s basketball game at Gamlin Gym. Henry County was supposed to host West Creek but due to the possible winter weather officials have decided to postpone the game. The game is scheduled to be made up on Monday, January 28. For continuing coverage of winter weather and closings listen to our stations and visit our website at wmufradio.com.

Sheriff's Office Releases Puppy Mill Photos

Puryear, Tenn.-The Henry County Sheriff's Office has released photos showing the conditions underwhich dogs and puppies were being kept in the puppy mill allegedly operated by Cheryl Kidd, 69, 1749 Perkins Rd. Kidd was arrested for allowing dogs to run at large and animal cruelty last week.

We published a story on the arrest and the conditions last Friday and a follow-up Monday. Sheriff Monte Belew said once the animals are cleaned up and the court has awarded the dogs to the sheriff's office, they will be available for adoption.

At the Kidd property, the dogs were being kept with no water or shelter.

Most of the dogs are smaller breeds and range in age from newborn puppies to adults. They are being cared for at the sheriff's office shelter and if you are interested, call 1-731-693-1509 and ask for Melissa Bomar.

Spike Lee To Appear for MSU Presidential Lecture Series

Murray, Tenn.-Widely regarded as a premiere African-American filmmaker, Spike Lee is the featured speaker for the 2013 Murray State University Presidential Lecture Series.

The lecture will be held on Monday, Feb. 4, at 7:30 p.m., in Murray State’s Lovett Auditorium. The lecture is free. MSU students, faculty and staff, and the general public are encouraged to attend.

In his lecture, “An Evening with Spike Lee: America Through My Lens,” Lee discusses the history, current status and future of America as he sees it.

Planning is underway for a Spike Lee Film Festival leading up to the Presidential Lecture Series this year. The festival will be sponsored by the MSU President’s Commission on Diversity and Inclusion (PCDI). Information on the screenings will be available at a later date.

Former speakers in Murray State’s prestigious Presidential Lecture Series include James Carville and Mary Matalin, Ben Stein, Desmond Tutu, Richard Norton Smith, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Benazir Bhutto, Lech Walesa and F.W. deKlerk.

County GOP Plans Convention

Paris, Tenn.-The Henry County Republican Party will hold a mass convention for the election of Executive Board members. The Executive Board members include Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer, Vice Treasurer and Secretary.

The Convention and election will take place in Paris at the Chancery Court in the

Courthouse at the Square on Thursday, Jan. 24 at 7 p.m..

Steve Goggans is Chairman of the Contest and Credentials

Committee. Contact information:

Budget Committee Approves Circuit Court Grant

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Budget Committee approved accepting a grant and moving some monies around in the circuit court budget Monday night that will allow the purchase of a mobile digital presentation cart in the courtroom.  

Circuit Court Clerk Mike Wilson explained to budget committee members this machine will allow the use of VHS, DVDs, sounds, and more and project it to 84 inches which could help in court cases. He said this is new technology and Henry County is one of very few rural counties to be able to get the grant to get the equipment.

The grant is from the Administrative Office of the Court in the amount of $10,000, but the equipment cost just under $13K. The budget committee approved transfers from different line items to free up the remainder of the money needed to obtain the digital presentation cart. Wilson said he took some money out of the maintenance line item since they haven’t used very much of it this year so far. No new money was needed here.

Budget Committee Approves More Transfers

Also in the general fund, the committee approved moving $5000 from unappropriated fund balance within the Health Department to contracted services. The reason for doing this is because the janitor that the Health Department had retired, and they decided to contract out the services for the remainder of the fiscal year. County Mayor Brent Greer said although this comes from fund balance, it will actually save about $3700 from salaries and wages.

Other request granted in the general fund included an increase in state grants in the amount of $25,000 for the Airport budget. The money will be used to replace the beacon at the airport. Money was also moved around in the Sheriff’s Department budget in the amount of $10K for medical and dental services from other line items. They sheriff’s also requested approval of increasing Law enforcement equipment over $10K due to proceeds from October’s gun sale.

The budget committee also approved transfers for the drug control fund taking almost $15K from unappropriated fund balance due to settlement in court by the state ordering $9,000 be returned to the petitioners. Sheriff Monte Belew said the original cash seizure in this particular case was $20,453. The remaining money was split between the Henry County Sheriff’s Office and Paris Police Department.

Road Board Hears Concerns about Milton Grove Road

Paris, Tenn.- At Monday night’s Henry County Road Board meeting, citizen Gary Brooks, who lives off highway 54 on Milton Grove Road, expressed concern about an issue with what part of the road the county owns and what part is his property. Brooks said that the road is all gravel and someone who had bought land in the area was coming down the road to access some farm land they have on it.

The road is a dead end and they have been coming thru to his barn or driveway to turn around large pieces of farm equipment, trucks, and tractors.

Brooks told the board he was concerned with the maintenance of the road and if the county would keep up their part now that this traffic has increased. He also asked if he could put a gate up to his driveway and part of the property.

Supervisor Ray Norwood said that the county owns Milton Grove Road to the ditch, then the rest belongs to him. He also told Brooks he could put up a gate where his property starts. More discussion was had about putting a turn around spot near that area so people who come down the road can turn around. Norwood and Commissioner Cody Craig told Brooks they would come down and look things over and discuss options later.

Road Plan Deferred to February Meeting; Striping Roads Becoming Issue

Paris, Tenn.- The board once again deferred action on getting the road plan in place for the coming year and board chairman Bobby Milam asked them to for sure have ideas in place by the February board meeting. Board member Marty Allison did suggest they try to get every gravel road in the county tar and chipped, even if it means not repaving some roads that weren’t as bad off right now. Allison said tar and chipping the roads might save on maintenance cost in the long run by getting rid of gravel roads.

Board chairman Bobby Milam spoke to the board about issues with striping on county roads. He said he has gotten many calls in the last couple of months about it as many roads stripes are faded badly. Road Supervisor Ray Norwood said the cost of striping is so high its hard to do many miles at one time, but that’s what needs to be done.

The board discussed some options like paying another county that has a striper to do some work, possibly buying a striper, which would be very expensive, and doing a little at a time for the next few years. Norwood did say that about every 5 years or so, they have safety grants that are available to use for striping roads, and that he would look to see if that is available this year.

Grove BB Game Cancelled

Paris, TN - The Grove Basketball Game Scheduled for tonight Jan 14 has been cancelled due to the anticipated winter weather Henry Co. will experience tonight.  


Dogs Confiscated from Puppy Mill Being Readied for Adoption

Sheriff Monte Belew cuddles with some of the dogs that were seized from a puppy mill last week. (Adam Jenkins photo).

Paris, Tenn.-Some 30 dogs that were seized from a puppy mill in rural Puryear on Thursday will hopefully be ready for adoption soon.

As we first reported on our website Friday, the dogs were seized from the home of Cheryl Kidd, 69, 1749 Perkins Rd., Puryear, after being found by deputies in unsanitary conditions with no shelter or water.

The dogs are being cared for at the Henry County Sheriff's Office animal shelter and Sheriff Monte Belew said, "We're in the process of nurturing them back to health and cleaning them up."

Before the dogs can be adopted, however, the sheriff's office must wait for the courts to award the dogs to them. "And we're hoping that happens as soon as possible," Belew said.

Many of the dogs are smaller breeds, but there is a range of ages and sizes. "They range from week-old puppies to full-grown dogs," Belew said.

Anyone interested in adopting the dogs can call Melissa Bomar at 693-1509.

Thefts Investigated Throughout County

Paris, Tenn.- The Henry County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate several thefts that occurred throughout the county over the weekend. One report stated over $2400 worth of items were stolen from a home on Guthrie Road. Several collectors’ coins, two gold rings, and a .38 caliber gun were reported missing by the homeowner. Police have no suspects.

Two storage buildings on Old Paris Murray Road had the locks cut off them and several items were stolen from one of the in the past couple of days. Missing items included a guitar, bow with hard case and several arrows, super Nintendo game console, console lighters, and an Atari game system. No suspects have been named in this theft.

A Husqvarna chainsaw valued at $300 was stolen from a shed on property at Point Pleasant Road this weekend. The victim stated that forced entry was made to the shed and the chainsaw was taken.

A home on Jackson Drive reported 100 Hydrocodone pills missing and their back door kicked in as well from the weekend. Police have no suspects in either incident.

Henry Police Office Micheal Gertsch responded to a home on Lumber Road in Henry for theft last week. The report stated that victims said the back door was kicked in, but they had already nailed it back before officer Gertsch had arrived. Missing from the home was a 24 foot ladder, large pipe wrench, shovel, and cook stove valued at a total of $200.

Paris Police Arrest Man for Drug Possession

Paris, Tenn.- Paris Police Officer Dereck Greenhill sent to 422 N. Brewer Street to serve warrants on Scottie Joe Goodman. While confronting Goodman, marijuana stems could be seen in plain view on the table in the living room. A search was done and some drug paraphernalia items were found. Goodman was arrested on the outstanding warrant and also charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.

In another report, Ptl. Amber Roaten will be filing warrants for theft on Jeremy B. Cox, age 19 of 215 Whitlock Road. This stems from Cox being seen prowling in a vehicle over the weekend.

Winter Weather Advisory Through Noon Tuesday

Memphis, Tenn.- The National Weather Service in Memphis has placed our area under a winter weather advisory until noon Tuesday as chances of rain mixing with freezing rain and snow are expected this afternoon, evening, and before noon Tuesday. Freezing rain occurs when rain hits a surface and freezes on contact and it’s the most treacherous of winter weather. Be sure and monitor forecast throughout the day and night and be careful this evening and Tuesday morning as roads will likely be slick, should the precipitation fall.

Large Crowd Wants to Get Healthy

Paris, Tenn.-Linda Holder of Paris (in blue) listens at one of the booths at Saturday's Healthy Henry County 2013 Family Fitness Fun Day and Mayor's Health Challenge kick-off. A large crowd attended the event, held at the Krider Performing Arts Center, and heard motivational speakers and city and county mayors. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Wirgau Appointed Vice-Chair of Business, Utilities Committee

Nashville, Tenn.-Representative Tim Wirgau (R-Buchanan) was appointed Vice-Chairman of the House Business and Utilities Committee on Thursday, the last day of the House organizational session. Wirgau will also be serving on the powerful House Health Committee. Wirgau was previously elected by his colleagues to serve on the Fiscal Review Committee as well, which conducts a continuing review of such items as revenue collections, budget requests, the recommended executive budget, and appropriations.

“I am honored that Speaker Beth Harwell placed her trust in me to serve as Vice-Chairman of the Business and Utilities Committee,” said Rep. Wirgau. “I look forward to the important work that the committee tackles. I am also appreciative for the opportunity to serve on the Health Committee. The well-being of Tennesseans is of vital importance, and I am grateful to represent the people of Benton, Henry and Stewart Counties on the committee.

The Business and Utilities Committee will consider legislation relating to utilities, communications (including telephone, telegraph, radio and television), and legislation impacting trade, etc. The committee will also review professional businesses and business organizations such as real estate, contractors, and all other licensed professionals.

Tim Wirgau is serving his second term in the Tennessee House of Representatives. He lives in Buchanan with his wife, Bonnie, and they have two children.

McKenzie Man Cited for Sixth Offense

Paris, Tenn.-Paris Police arrested a McKenzie man for driving with no driver’s license following a traffic stop at 1 a.m. Saturday morning. Arrested was Charles Haymer, age 41 of 15A Reynolds St., McKenzie.

Patrolman Amber Roaten observed Haymer speeding on N. Market Street and in the process of the stop, determined that Haymer had been arrested five other times for driving without a license. According to the police report, the license had been suspended for failure to pay child support and failure to satisfy citations on multiple dates.

Roaten also cited him for speeding. Bond was set for $2,000.

Paris Patrolman Jeramye Whitaker arrested George Webb, age 55 of 210 Routon St., for assault after he was called to the home. Witnesses said Webb had assaulted a female during an argument after his whiskey was poured down the sink. When Whitaker found him, he was passed out on the bed, according to the report.

Foggy Morn at Trout Pond

Paris, Tenn.-Early morning fog settles on the trout pond at Eiffel Tower Park II Saturday morning. (Shannon McFarlin photo).


Busy Day in Circuit Court, Several Sentenced


           Amanda Clayton                                       Dalton Patterson, Jr.

Paris, Tenn.-It was a busy day in Henry County Circuit Court Friday as over 100 cases were heard by Judge Donald Parish. Several defendants issued guilty pleas and were sentenced.

Included in those cases were:


--Amanda Clayton of Paris was sentenced to serve 11 months and 29 days for reckless endangerment following the accident last year in which she was driving a Northwest Tennessee Human Resources van, hit someone and left him in the roadway.

A second charge of leaving the scene of the accident was nolled (dismissed) against her. Part of her sentence is that she will serve it on deferred probation.

--Robert Dale Woodard plead guilty to an amended charge of criminal attempted rape and was sentenced to four years in prison. The second count of incest was dismissed. He also was ordered to register as a sex offender and he will be placed on supervision for life.

--Dalton Lee Patterson, Jr., plead guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide and was sentenced to nine years in prison and his license is revoked for five years. The remainder of the counts against him, vehicular homicide, leaving the scene of an accident involving death and driving under the influence were dismissed.

--William Bratton, who initially was charged with two counts of statutory rape by an authority figure, plead guilty to an amended charge of aggravated statutory rape and will be sentenced March 4 at 1 p.m. The first charge of statutory rape was nolled.

Girls Win, Boys Lose

Paris, Tenn.-In Henry County Patriots' basketball action Friday night, the girls beat Northeast 50-45, while the boys lost 76-63.

High scorer for the girls team was Savannah Rose with 14 points, while Amari Cook was high scorer for the boys with 14.

Freeman Request Denied

Paris, Tenn. — A request by Jefferson Lawton Freeman, 31, who is
serving a 15-year sentence for a reduced sentence of voluntary
manslaughter, for post-conviction relief was denied by Henry County Circuit Court Judge Donald Parish.
Freeman had plead guilty to voluntary manslaughter in the 2010 slaying
of Fred French. The slaying followed an argument between the two men
during which Freeman, who also was charged with stealing from French,
had strangled him.

Through his attorney, Albert Wade, Freeman filed the motion for
relief, but it was extended until January upon agreement by the state
that the defense did not have enough time to review previously.

Solemn Procession for Former Fire Chief

Paris, Tenn.-Paris Firefighters and other emergency responders marched in a solemn procession to First Baptist Church for the funeral of long-time former Paris Fire Chief George Atkins Friday afternoon. Ed Smith played the bagpipes during the procession. Atkins was a fireman from 1956-2000 and was chief from 1982-2000. Bottom photo shows the procession as it continues into the church. A line of fire trucks were part of the funeral cortege to Memorial Cemetery. (Shannon McFarlin photos).

Camden Man's Handgun Permit Suspended For Rant

Camden, Tenn.-The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security announced today the suspension of a Camden man's  handgun carry permit after he was featured in a threatening YouTube video post that went viral earlier this week.

According to a statement by Commissioner Bill Gibbons released Friday, the decision to suspend the permit was based on a “material likelihood of risk of harm to the public”.

James Yeager, 42, of Camden, Tenn., allegedly claimed in the video he would “start killing people” if the Obama administration took executive action to pass gun control measures and the video has been featured on national television in the past few days.

Gibbons said, “The number one priority for our department is to ensure the public’s safety. Mr. Yeager’s comments were irresponsible, dangerous, and deserved our immediate attention. Due to our concern, as well as that of law enforcement, his handgun permit was suspended immediately. We have notified Mr. Yeager about the suspension today via e-mail. He will receive an official notification of his suspension through the mail."

Yeager is the CEO of Tactical Response, a firearms and tactical training school in Camden, according to The Camden Chronicle.

Puryear Woman Arrested for Running Puppy Mill

                      Cheryl Kidd

Puryear, Tenn.- A rural Puryear woman was arrested for operating a puppy mill and keeping dogs in an unsanitary situation by Henry County sheriff’s deputies on Thursday. Twenty-seven dogs were seized and taken in protective custody at the Sheriff Department’s animal shelter on Jones Bend Rd.

Cheryl Kidd, age 69 of 1749 Perkins Rd., was charged with animal cruelty and allowing dogs to run at large.

The situation came to light when Sgt. Eddie Forrest was investigating a complaint of animals running at large and located some 30 dogs without adequate shelter. The next day, he and Deputy Jim Sanders went to Kidd’s home to speak with her. According to the report, they noticed that none of the dogs had clean water and that they were all wet from the rain because there was no shelter available.

They also heard more dogs barking inside the trailer. According to the report, Kidd admitted that the shelter was inadequate and that none of the dogs had been to the veterinarian. She told officers she provided them with shots herself, but the report said she did not provide any evidence of medical supplies.

The report also indicated she has been arrested twice before on animal cruelty charges.

Twenty-seven dogs were taken into protective custody and 10-15 more were observed, but were unable to be caught. At least one dog was found dead in an occupied pen.

Puryear Man Arrested for Aggravated Assault

A Puryear man was arrested for aggravated assault after he reportedly beat a woman at a Paris residence. Timothy Forrest, Jr., age 25, 1295 Rowe School Rd., Puryear, was arrested by Paris Police after the incident in which he reportedly grabbed the victim by the hair, threw her to the floor, burned her and hit her in the fact with his fist in front of witnesses.

First Quota Meeting of Year Held

Paris, Tenn.-At the first Quota Club meeting of 2013, members honored
six members are celebrating Quota anniversaries: Connie Garrett – 13 years; Brenda Hosford – 28 years; Mary Sue Looney – 33 years; Gina Olds – 9 years; Geraldine Sykes – 33 years and Stephanie Tayloe – 3 years; for a total of 119 years of service.

A Thank You note was read from Nancy Rogers at Western State Mental Hospital for the Christmas Party and gifts provided by the Quota Club.
Moore announced that the club will sponsor the Patriot Kitchen on January 31 and the meal will be soup and sandwich. She asked for help with the food and serving.

Melanie Townsend presented a project in which the club voted to sponsor a booth: “Evening of Chocolate Delight”, sponsored by the Women’s Health Advisory at Henry County Medical Center, will be held on February 5 from 5-7 pm at Inman School. The club will provide 200 bite-size pieces of chocolate dessert and a $15 gift for the auction. Connie Garrett will chair this project and proceeds go to provide mammograms for women who are unable to afford them.

Teas appointed Tayloe to complete the unexpired 2012-2013 term of President-Elect.

Business Theft Investigated

Paris, Tenn.-Paris Police are investigating the theft of two wooden porch swings from Eagle Buildings, 314 Memorial Dr. The swings are valued at $135 each and were taken off the front porch of the business overnight Thursday.


News from past weeks here.




ReMax Realty 

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Premier Nissan

Commercial Bank

Joe Mahan Ford

Patriots Football

First United Methodist Church

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