Arrest Report - Friday - January 18, 2019

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office for Friday, January 18, 2019:

GDC Investigating Death At Hays Prison As Homicide

Officials with the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) are investigating the death of an inmate at Hays State Prison in Trion as a homicide on Thursday.

Press Release from the Georgia Department of Corrections:

The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) is investigating the death of an inmate at Hays State Prison (HSP) in Trion, Ga., as a suspected homicide.

On January 17, at approximately 11:57 a.m., inmate Marion Luke (GDC#1117396) was assaulted by another inmate.  Medical personnel and staff responded and took him to medical, awaiting the arrival of Emergency Medical Services.  Inmate Luke was pronounced deceased at approximately 12:05 p.m., in the medical unit by the facility physician.  GDC is conducting an investigation into the death, as standard procedure.

Luke was sentenced to eight years in 2014, in Dekalb County for Aggravated Assault.

Local Church Vandalized

Image result for church vandalism news

The Summerville Police Department is investigating an incident of vandalism at a local church.

A Summerville police officer responded to Redemption Worship Center on West First Avenue on Wednesday of this week.  Church members told the responding officer that someone had broken into the back door of the church building.

The officer observed where vandals had pried the door open and then unlocked a side-rear door.

The church members discovered the break-in as they were replacing a flood light on the back of the church.

Nothing appeared to be missing from the church, but the church members told the officer that there had been a suspicious black sedan that had been parking in the lower gravel parking lot on multiple occasions.

The Summerville Police Department is posting extra patrols in the area and the investigation into the break-in continues.

Alabama Man's Car Vandalized In Summerville

The Summerville Police Department was called to Pine Hill Apartments by an Alabama man who says that his car was vandalized while parked at the location.

The incident was reported shortly after midnight this past Sunday.  Ryan Gilbreath, of Leesburg, Alabama, told a responding officer that he had brought the vehicle to Summerville two to three weeks ago and was in the process of selling it to Christian Whitlock.

Gilbreath told the officer that the vehicle had been moved from where he had left it and that the radio had been stolen.  Also, there was a good bit of graffiti, written in permanent marker, on the inside of the vehicle.

The officer observed the title to the vehicle in Mr. Gilbreath’s possession.  The incident is being investigated by the Summerville Police Department.

Chattooga Residents On Georgia Highland's President's & Dean's List

Georgia Highlands College has announced students named to the fall 2018 President’s List and Dean’s List.

To achieve President’s List status, students must earn a 4.0 grade point average and attain a minimum of nine semester hours of credit.  The following Chattooga County residents were on the President’s list:

Adriana Bautista-Florentino, Summerville

Rhonda Brown, Trion

Tania Driggers, Summerville

Anna Herring, Summerville

Joel Mosqueda-Arreola, Trion

Sandra Poe, Menlo

Justin Stowe, Summerville

Levi Thomas, Trion

To make Dean’s List students must complete a minimum of nine semester hours and achieve at least a 3.5 average.  Here are the Chattooga County residents making the Dean’s list:

Autumn Bandy, Trion

Murphy Browning, Summerville

Jenifer Lopez, Summerville

MaCayla Mobley, Summerville

Jessica Smith, Summerville

Austin Southerland, Trion

William Woods, Summerville

Truck Stolen In TN Found Wrecked In Lyerly

Sample Image

According to a report released Thursday by the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office, a truck that was found wrecked on the side of Highway 114 near Lyerly was stolen out of Soddy Daisy, Tennessee.

The truck was a 2015 Toyota Tundra that crashed near the Lyerly town limits.  According to the deputy’s report, the truck’s airbags were deployed and there was extensive damage to the vehicle.  There was no one around the vehicle when the deputy arrived.

The truck was subsequently towed and after running the VIN number on the vehicle, it came back as being stolen back in December out of Soddy Daisy.

Chattooga Chamber Looking For Leadership Chattooga Candidates

The Chattooga County Chamber of Commerce is inviting local businesses to nominate a candidate from companies and organizations in Chattooga County  to participate in Leadership Chattooga 2019.

The purpose of the program is to provide emerging community leaders with a greater awareness of community issues, needs, services and resources.

Chattooga County Chamber Director Cindy Rivers says, “Equipping our future partners in business, government and community with the tools they need to be effective and successful leaders in their respective fields is the goal of the Chattooga Chamber of Commerce, and we appreciate your continued support to reach that goal each year.”

For more information, you can contact the Chattooga County Chamber at 706-857-4033.

Georgia Man Jailed In Alabama For Fleeing From Cops

A Cedartown, Georgia man is behind bars after attempting to elude Centre, Alabama  Police on Wednesday afternoon.

According to Corporal Matt Peek, at approximately 12:50 Centre Police received a 911 call stating a woman was chasing a guy down Industrial Park Drive who she caught stealing from her property.

Corporal Peek, Chief Kirk Blankenship, and Inv. Randy Mayorga spotted the suspect’s vehicle on Highway 411 North just outside the city limits and the suspect ran. Centre Police gave chase down Highway 411 when the chase came to a stop near County Road 45 where an 18 wheeler assisted officers in boxing in the suspect vehicle.

The suspect was taken into custody and it was determined that he was wanted out of Georgia for several felony warrants.

74-year-old Roy Everett Overby was booked into the Cherokee County Detention Center shortly after 2:00 p.m. on charges of Attempting to Elude; he is also on hold for authorities in Cedartown.

The Theft cases are being investigated by Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Investigators.

WEIS Radio

Chattooga BOE Votes For Return Of 5 Day School Week

Three new school board members were sworn in at the Chattooga County Board of Education meeting on Thursday evening and shortly thereafter a majority voted for a return to the five day school week for Chattooga County Schools.

The issue of the five-day school week was discussed frequently during the last election in which the three new Republican board members, Dr. Julia Houston, Sammy Ballard and Brad Hayes, defeated the Democratic incumbents.  All four Republicans on the board – including John Agnew who was elected in 2016 – voted for the return to the five-day school week.  The loan Democrat on the BOE, John Turner was outnumbered and abstained from the vote.

Despite Mr. Ballard and Mr. Hayes telling the local paper this week that they didn’t favor a hasty return to the five-day week and instead indicating that they wanted to form a study committee to find out more about how well the four-day week had worked, they joined with Dr. Houston and Mr. Agnew in doing away with the four-day week.

The meeting was well attended by the public, all with an interest in seeing what the new board would do regarding the four-day week.

Superintendent Jimmy Lenderman will now develop a budget and a school calendar reflecting the five-day school week, which will begin in the fall of 2019.

In other business, the Board of Education voted John Agnew as chair and Sammy Ballard as vice-chair.

Cherokee Medical Center Improvements Underway

Cherokee Medical Center, ER, ECC, Emergency Room, Facility

Projects underway at Cherokee Medical Center are expected to ensure the hospital continues providing quality care for the patients it serves. In the Emergency Room, exam rooms and the waiting room will be expanded. Upgrades to Imaging Services are also planned.

“All these facility and technology upgrades will enable Cherokee to expand our treatment options so that residents of northeast Alabama and northwest Georgia can receive the care they need closer to home,” said Brandon Reece, Administrator of Cherokee Medical Center.

The number of exam rooms in the Emergency Room is being doubled to eight from four. A remodeled and expanded waiting room will also better serve patients. The Emergency Room recently moved into a temporary space. “Being able to have a temporary space will give the construction teams free reign to work on the project during the next few months,” said David Early, Vice President of Support Services and Operations at Floyd. Floyd’s Volunteer Services has contributed $125,000 to this expansion, proceeds made from fundraising efforts over the past year. Floyd Healthcare Foundation is also raising funds for the project. The work is expected to be completed by spring.

Cherokee Medical Center’s Imaging Services department also will have several significant upgrades. An ultrasound machine will be moved to Cherokee Medical Center from Floyd Medical Center.

A digital radiography room will replace the existing X-ray room. The existing X-ray room and a portable X-ray unit will be upgraded to digital radiography standards. That project will also include an overhaul of the electronic components and cosmetic appearance of the room.

“Combining these investments with Cherokee Medical Center’s existing CT scanner and digital mammography unit will complete a full suite of technologically advanced, best practice imaging modalities for the residents and health care providers of Centre, Alabama,” said Aimee Griffin, Assistant Director of Imaging Services at Floyd.

Press Release

Arrest Report - Thursday - January 17, 2019

Here is the latest arrest report from the Chattooga County Sheriff’s Office for Thursday, January 17, 2019:

Chattooga BOE Meeting - 5 Day School Week On Agenda

Sample Image

The Chattooga County Board of Education will hold their first meeting of the New Year, and the first meeting with three new board members, coming up this evening.

Dr. Julia Houston, Brad Hayes and Sammy Ballard will take their seats on the board of education this evening and already the newly-elected board members will be discussing a return to the five-day school week.

According to an agenda released yesterday by the Board of Education, Dr. Julia Houston, who represents the Lyerly area on the school board, has requested a discussion of the five-day school week.

The school board will also be selecting a chair and vice-chair for the board of education at tonight’s meeting.

The meeting will take place at 6 PM at the Chattooga County Education Center board meeting room.

Inmate Serving Time For Chattooga County Thefts Recaptured After Escape

A thirty-six-year-old man serving time for theft in Chattooga County escaped from the Augusta Transitional Center earlier this week and has since been recaptured.

Kenneth Lee Arnold was sentenced to five years in prison for thefts committed in Chattooga County in 2014.  Arnold was sentenced in Chattooga County Superior Court for theft by taking and theft by receiving stolen property and began serving his prison term in 2017.

Arnold has a long history of arrests for theft in both Chattooga and Paulding counties.

He was serving time in Richmond County, Georgia at a transitional center.  The center houses 200 inmates who work in food service, sanitation and maintenance.   According to the Georgia Department of Corrections, Kenneth Arnold did not return to the center from where he was working in Grovetown on January 14th.

Arnold was recaptured later that same day in South Carolina according to the Georgia Department of Corrections.

"Deportation Bus" Candidate Pleads Not Guilty

Georgia Governor Candidate Michael Williams at a campaign stop in Chattooga County last year

Georgia Republican gubernatorial candidate who campaigned in a “deportation bus” has pleaded not guilty to fraud charges.  Then-Senator Michael Williams had campaigned in Chattooga County last year ahead of the Republican Primary.

Williams was indicted last month in Hall County northeast of Atlanta on charges of insurance fraud and lying to investigators. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports Williams requested a jury trial ahead of an arraignment hearing Wednesday. Attorney A.J. Richman said Williams “looks forward to his day in court.”

The charges stem from a May incident when Williams reported his campaign office was burglarized. Williams’ campaign manager said then that $300,000 worth of computers used to mine cryptocurrency was taken.

Williams finished last in the five-man Republican gubernatorial primary. He campaigned on loyalty to President Donald Trump and publicity stunts, including the “deportation bus,” symbolically targeting people in the country illegally.

Summerville Man's Stolen Suit Spotted At Church

A Summerville man gave police the name of a suspect that he believes stole some of his suits and wore one of them to church.

According to a report from the Summerville Police Department, James Watkins told a responding officer that someone stole around 150 suits from a Sixth Street house.  Watkins told the officer that he was in the process of moving from the house and had piled all of his suits on the bed and in the living room.  Watkins said that when he came back to the home to get the suits, they were gone.

Mr. Watkins provided the officer the name of a possible suspect who was seen wearing one of his stolen suits at a local church.

The Summerville Police Department is investigating.

Rain Today - Colder Air Returns For The Weekend


Rain returns to the area today and some of the coldest air of the winter season is headed our way for the weekend.   Rain will remain in the forecast from today through Saturday with showers and thunderstorms possible on Saturday and Saturday night.  There is a chance that as we go into Sunday morning we could see some snow showers across Northwest Georgia and Northeast Alabama.  See the latest weather forecast from the National Weather Service in Peachtree City, Georgia below:

Showers likely, mainly after 11am. Cloudy, with a high near 47. Calm wind becoming south around 5 mph in the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New precipitation amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.
Showers likely, mainly before 10pm. Cloudy, with a low around 43. South wind around 5 mph becoming calm. Chance of precipitation is 60%.
A 10 percent chance of showers before 7am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 57. Calm wind.
Friday Night
A 40 percent chance of showers after 1am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 47. Calm wind becoming southeast around 5 mph after midnight.
Showers, with thunderstorms also possible after 1pm. High near 60. South wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%.
Saturday Night
Showers and possibly a thunderstorm before 1am, then a chance of showers. Low around 37. Chance of precipitation is 100%.
A 20 percent chance of snow showers before 1pm. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 41.
Sunday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 21.
M.L.King Day
Sunny, with a high near 42.
Monday Night
Mostly clear, with a low around 27.
A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 48.
Tuesday Night
A 50 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 34.
A 50 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 50.

Murder Conviction: Orders To Kill Came From Hays Prison Inmate

A Duluth, Georgia man was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of a man who owed $500 to a gang leader that is incarcerated at Hays State Prison in Chattooga County.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that twenty-seven-year-old Durell Lewis pleaded guilty to three charges of felony murder, malice murder, false imprisonment, aggravated assault, aggravated battery, criminal street gang activity and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Lewis admitted to killing Jeffery Anderson who had borrowed $500 to pay his rent from Gordon Evans.  Evans is reported to be a leader in the “Nine Trey Gangsters” and is serving a sentence at Hays State Prison.

The killing took place in November of 2015.  Investigators say that they had wiretapped a contraband cell phone that was being used by Evans inside Hays Prison.  Evans reportedly bragged about sending someone to “handle” Anderson because of the $500 debt.

Library Board Meeting

The Chattooga County Library Board of Trustees will be having a quarterly meeting on Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019. It will be held at 5 p.m. at the Summerville, Library located on 360 Farrar Drive, Summerville, GA 30174.

DFCS Releasing Food Stamps Early

 Georgia’s Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) is making alternative arrangements for those who receive food stamps while the federal government shutdown continues. DFCS has released the February allotment of food stamp benefits early to all Georgia residents.

In statement released on Tuesday, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials made the decision to protect Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants access and announced that food stamp recipients will have access to their full benefits for February, even if the partial government shutdown continues.

DFCS says the USDA is working with states to load benefits onto recipients’ cards by Jan. 20, under a provision that allows them to award the benefits.

DFCS says Georgia SNAP recipients can now access their February benefits via their electronic benefits transfer (EBT) cards and do not have to wait until their regularly-scheduled issuance date for the month.

Georgia DFCS says it worked over the weekend with its EBT vendor, Conduent, and with the USDA Food and Nutrition Service to provide early issuance of February benefits for all SNAP recipients.

The move was made in an effort to ensure families are fully prepared to purchase food in the event that the partial government shutdown is not resolved before current funding for the program is exhausted.

FCCLA Announces Ms. Chattooga Pageant

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, closeup

The Chattooga FCCLA will be hosting the 70th annual Miss Chattooga County Pageant on March 23,2019 at 4 pm at Chattooga High School. Find details below.

This is a fundraiser event for Chattooga FCCLA at CHS. Proceeds from this event will help students participate in conferences, competitions, and leadership opportunities. Organizers say that everything possible has been done to ensure that this will be a successful event and enjoyable for all involved.

Contestants should be a resident of Chattooga County or a student in any Chattooga County school.

You can find our more here.

Applications can be picked up in the CHS front office or any school within the system. You can also access the application at the attached link: here.

If you have any questions please contact Kayla Hartline at or 706-857-2402