Friday, September 30, 2011

Rest in Peace Captain Braden

Wartburg police captain Ralph Braden has passed away due to a toxic reaction to painkillers after he had suffered a blunt force injury to his left shoulder after a struggle with a suspect.
Captain Braden and the Wartburg department were recently honored at Lifesavers for their outstanding traffic safety program. The Captain will be deeply missed.

1000 pills found after traffic stop in Hawkins County

In East Tennessee a driver was pulled over for swerving all over Highway 70. The driver seemed impaired. A consent search of oh vehicle produced over 1,000 hydrocodone pills. Read more on the WATE TV website at:

Trooper Stanford released from hospital. Vest saved life.

Outstanding THP trooper Dwayne Stanford has been released from the hospital after being shot during a traffic stop. Dwayne had arrested the driver for outstanding Kentucky warrants. As he returned to the car the passenger shot him. He was hit in the chest, returned fire and killed his attacker. Dwayne survived, because he was wearing his bullet proof vest.
Read more in the Jackson Sun at:

Memphis officer struck by DUI driver

In Memphis an officer was struck by a driver, who has been charged with DUI, reckless endangerment and other charges. The driver was also charged with the misdemeanor of "failure to exercise due care". It is good to see that statute being used. It appears the officer will fully recover.

Read about this situation in the Memphis Commercial Appeal at:

12 years for vehicular homicide with .05 BAC

A 22 year old Madisonville, Tn driver has pled guilty to vehicular homicide by intoxication and received a 12 year sentence. When the crash occurred killing 22 year old Samantha Webster, a pedestrian, he left the scene. When captured, he admitted to drinking a 40 ounce beer.
Read more from the Knoxville News Sentinel at:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

DUI NEWS ISSUE 36 available

The 36th issue of our newsletter is available on our website.
It includes article concerning Standing Orders and the Hippa Myth as well as features including case law updates and vehicular homicide cases.
Find it at:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

New DUI Decision

In State v Ownby, released this week by the Court of Criminal Appeals, there was plenty of proof that Ownby was driving intoxicated in Sevier County. Deputy Devin Smith did a fine job of defining his training and experience and tied what he saw from Ownby, to his training. Ownby refused a breath test and then complained that the State did not have objective, scientific evidence of intoxication. Hmmm. Maybe he should have taken the test!
The Court stated,

"Although field sobriety tests lack the scientific precision of a breathalyzer test, the field sobriety tests, in combination with the other evidence in this case, support the Defendant’s conviction. The Defendant’s performance on the field sobriety tests was graded by a four year professionally experienced deputy, who was specially trained to administer field sobriety tests and detect drivers who are under the influence of an intoxicant. Also, the Defendant refused to take a breathalyzer test. Moreover, the Defendant failed to give a reasonable explanation for speeding and running a red light other than intoxication.

Furthermore, the Defendant acknowledged he had consumed one beer and smoked marijuana that evening. "

Read the case at:

12 years for Bradley County vehicular homicide

Marcus Johnson has been sentenced to 12 years after pleading guilty to vehicular homicide by intoxication for a Memorial Day 2009 wreck in which he killed Denise Guthrie. He crossed a double yellow line, sideswiped one vehicle and crashed head on into the vehicle driven by Ms. Guthrie. Johnson was intoxicated by alcohol and methaphetamine at the time.
Read about it in the Cleveland Daily Banner at:

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

22 years for McDonald Vehicular Homicide

When Dusty McDonald crashed he ran away. He left his 9 year old daughter in his vehicle trapped to die.
McDonald has pled guilty and received a 22 year sentence in Sumner County. ADA William Lamberth was interviewed on Fox 17 Nashville about the case and the law. See the story at:

Monday, September 12, 2011

Father and 4 children injured by alleged red light runner

At about 8 a.m. this Monday morning a dad, Phillip Boring, 36, and his four children ages 8,7,5 and 4 were injured when a 23 year old male allegedly ran a red light and slammed into their car. The children were all in critical condition. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers and never run a red light. No criminal penalty will make the injuries go away.
Read more in the Chattanooga Times Free Press at:

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Beyond BAC: How the Breathalyzer Is Poised to Revolutionize Medical Diagnostics

Breath test skeptics i.e. defense attorneys and their hired gun experts regularly attack breath tests as being unreliable. The legitimate medical field does not. In this fascinating article from researchers discuss new developments in breath testing. They are developing breath prints and scans to diagnose lung cancer and other diseases.
Read about it at:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Another hit and run is on the loose

An East Tennessee bicyclist was killed around 10 p.m. Tuesday in Gray, Tennessee. The driver who struck and killed the bike rider took off and left the scene. I will never understand how a human being can leave another on the side of the road to die. This crash may not have even been the car driver's fault, but skipping out and leaving someone to suffer and die is the driver's fault. I hope the person has enough of a conscience that he/she will do the right thing.
Read about it in the Johnson City Press at:

Bath Salt Raids

Congratulations to the TBI, Attorney General, District Attorney Whitesell and all the police agencies involved in the raid of 36 locations that were selling "bath salts" in their Murfreesboro area businesses. Hopefully, people won't be buying this poison at these locations again!

Friday, September 2, 2011

85 August traffic fatalities in Tennessee

There were 85 traffic fatalities in August. That is 12 fewer than in 2010. Through the first 8 months of the year there have been 86 fewer fatalities than last year. 617 people have died in traffic crashes this year.
Now the dangerous Labor Day count begins. Let's shoot for zero this weekend.

Knoxville and Chattanooga rank among safest for drivers

Congratulations to the cities of Knoxville and Chattanooga for now being ranked the 6th and 10th safest cities in America in which to drive. AllState insurance posted the rankings based on number of accidents and years between accidents for drivers. Nashville was ranked number 30 and Memphis number 58.
The worst city was Washington DC (193) and the best Fort Collins, Colorado.
Massachusetts was not included in the study for some unknown reason.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Trooper Joe Snipes has died

Trooper Joe Snipes was the guy who investigated crashes in Bradley and Polk counties. Many stories about crashes started with the words, "the crash is under investigation according to Trooper Joe Snipes".
It is very sad to report that Trooper Snipes has been killed and his wife injured in a crash, while off duty.
Read more at the link below and tomorrow at 9:57 am please observe a moment of silence for the man who wore badge number 957.