Man’s Shoes Go Zoom

By Matt Kenwright/The UTC Echo

Police responded to an accidental injury call at 720 E Fourth St.

A man outside the McKenzie Arena fell on a wet spot near Krystal’s promotional truck outside Gate 2.

The fall was attributed to the heavy rain and the man’s size 18 Nike Zoom shoes.

The man complained of lower left leg pain, but he refused medical treatment.

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Public Intoxication on Oak Street

By Matt Kenwright/The UTC Echo


Police responded to a public intoxication call at 501 Oak St.

A resident assistant said there was an intoxicated male loitering in front of the residence life office.

Police approached the man and smelled alcohol from several feet away.

The man had trouble and difficulty standing and balancing and used the wall to hold himself up.

The man continued to rock side to side as if he was about to fall.

The man admitted to consuming alcohol underage off-campus.

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Library Elevator Stuck

By Matt Kenwright/The UTC Echo


Officers responded to the library on a report of an elevator being stuck with six people inside.

Upon arrival, officers spoke with a member of the library staff who said the elevator had started working again.

The trapped people had gotten out of the elevator and left the building.

Maintenance arrived and checked both elevators and said they would file a request for service.

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Theft from ARC Locker

By Matt Kenwright/The UTC Echo

Police responded to a theft call at 601 E. Fifth St.

Police spoke to two women who said while they were working out in the ARC someone stole their property from a locker in the women’s locker room.

The stolen items included a set of keys, Under Armour jacket, a Vera Bradley messenger bag, an anatomy lab manual, an umbrella and a pair of shoes.

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Student’s hair is lit on fire on school bus

By Brad Lipscomb

MIDDLETOWN, Ohio (AP) — Three male high school students have been charged with misdemeanors after a student’s hair was set on fire on a southwest Ohio school bus, authorities said Tuesday.

A chunk of Devin Lewis’s hair caught fire when a student allegedly held a cigarette lighter to it as Lewis rode a Middletown City School District bus on Friday.

The 15-year-old freshman said he was listening to music when someone pulled off his hood, and a student held a flame in front of his face, the Middletown Journal reported. Lewis said the flame made him jerk his head back and that’s when another student lit his hair on fire.

“At first I thought they were just holding the lighter in front of my face,” Lewis said. “They are always lighting lighters on the bus. I never thought someone would set fire to my hair.”

Lewis said he didn’t know the names of the students.

Others came to his aid and extinguished the fire. He said he was left with charred hair and had to have his hair cut.

A 15-year-old was charged with aggravated menacing, a 17-year-old was charged with aggravated menacing and assault, and another 17-year-old was charged with obstructing official business, Rob Clevenger, juvenile court administrator, said Tuesday. The three were not identified because they are juveniles. They were being held at a juvenile detention center, pending a hearing Feb. 17.

School officials suspended the three students for 10 days each and recommended expulsion, school spokeswoman Debbie Alberico said.

“We don’t tolerate any type of bullying at all,” Alberico said. “The fact that these students have been removed from school sends a message.”

Alberico said the 6,800-student district is looking at programs to address bullying.

Bullying happens,” Alberico said. “We just have to be more diligent about it.”

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.

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Protecting against campus theft

By Rachel Stimson

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (UTC/The Loop) — Theft is the most prominent criminal activity at UTC.

UTC’s Police Chief Bob Ratchford said most thefts that happen are “crimes of opportunity.” Students leave backpacks, purses and laptops unattended. Wallets and purses are left out in cars for people to see.

Liz Zipperer, Nashville, Tenn., senior, said “I leave my stuff unattended in Frist Hall just to run upstairs for a moment.”

The University Police Department works with the National Crime Information Center, which allows them to enter a serial number of a stolen item to see where that item is in use. Chief Ratchford encourages students to write down the serial number of their items in case anything is stolen.

“Campus is a small city in itself, so unfortunately crime does occur,” Chief Ratchford said. The university is an open campus, so students, staff and faculty are not the only people permitted at UTC. Chief Ratchford wants people to be prepared but not paranoid by taking responsibility for their own safety.

Also, Chief Ratchford emphasized that the primary purpose on campus is education. The University Police Department is here to assist in making sure students, faculty and staff focus on education while the officers focus on safety.

Megan Ferguson, Munford, Tenn., sophomore, said she feels safe on campus even at night. She said she would walk alone until about 10 p.m. and in a group at any time.  Her anthropology class ends at 8 p.m., and causes her to walk alone to Boling Apartments after the class. “I always carry my keys like a dagger,” Ferguson said.  Ferguson received the emergency phone numbers of the University Police when she attended orientation. She said she would call for an escort if she needed one.

If students feel unsafe at any moment on campus, they can call 425-HELP for an escort or incident report. There are about 125 emergency call buttons on campus for a direct line to the University Police Department.

Chief Ratchford said students could carry mace or a stun gun if they feel comfortable enough to use it in a defensive way. But he said students have another defense.   “The best weapon to have is your brain,” he said.

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Post Office Shooting

HENNING, Tenn. (AP/The Loop) — Two gunmen opened fire Monday at a post office in a rural West Tennessee town that was home to “Roots” author Alex Haley, killing two workers during what a survivor and authorities described as an attempted robbery.

The shooting happened Monday morning at the post office in Henning, the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Department said. Officers were searching for a maroon Chevrolet Malibu with two men inside, and no arrests have been made.

District Attorney Mike Dunavant said the case involved “disturbing violence” but did not elaborate.

The post office, which sits between a self-service car wash and a coin-operated laundry called “Mom’s” in this town of about 1,200 people, often has residents coming in to pick up their mail. Home delivery isn’t provided in Henning, some 45 miles northeast of Memphis.

Beth Barnett, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Postal Service, said that five people usually work in the post office but that she was not sure how many were there at the time of the attack.

Mary Hammock, who works at a nearby market, said Monday afternoon that she had been in the post office about 8:25 a.m. and noticed it was not as loud or busy as normal.

“I knew something didn’t feel right because it was real quiet,” she said. She returned to the market and heard police sirens about 15 minutes later.

“I might have been real close probably to losing my life,” she said.

Around midday, plainclothes investigators were scanning the area along a railroad track that sits behind the post office. Lines of yellow police tape kept people away from the building as a crowd gathered nearby, some sitting in chairs, waiting for more information about what happened.

Crime scene investigation trucks were parked outside, including one from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

Ella Holloway, who lives within walking distance of the post office, said she knew one of the women killed. Holloway said she would be greeted by the woman’s smile when she went to the post office to buy stamps.

“She was a real nice person,” Holloway said.

Tony Burns, a state employee at the Tennessee Capitol in Nashville, said his sister-in-law is a postal service worker who was assigned to the Henning office Monday. She told him that the shooting happened during a robbery attempt, but that she escaped unharmed. The sheriff’s department also said earlier in the day that the incident may have been a robbery.

Standing on a street corner near the post office, city resident Emmitt Hennings, a 71-year-old retiree, said it was hard to comprehend what happened.

“I just couldn’t believe it, not in this town,” Hennings said. “It’s too quiet.”

Postal officials offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case.

The post office is less than a half-mile away from the museum dedicated to the “Roots” author Haley, who died in 1992. The 1976 book won a Pulitzer Prize and was the basis for a top-rated TV series. The story chronicled his family history from Africa to slavery and freedom in the U.S., and it inspired many people to research their own families’ roots.


Associated Press writer Lucas L. Johnson II in Nashville contributed to this report.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.

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Elevator attacks on the rise

By James Lowe

Police and the fire department responded to a woman trapped between the first and second floor of the Luptin Library Thursday evening.

While trapped in the elevator the woman was able to contact the campus police dispatch and her mother.  Shortly after stating her predicament she then lost contact with the police dispatch.

Fire department officials were able to use a toggle switch to open the elevator doors, thus releasing the trapped victim.

Believing her daughter was unable to breathe the mother wished to take her daughter to the hospital.  The victim refused medical treatment.

The victim’s mother who arrived on the scene before the elevator doors were opened voiced concern over the response time of emergency services.  Police told the victim that they planned to discuss the issue to the Safety and Risk Dept.

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Elevated concern over elevator entrapment

By James Lowe

Police were notified by a woman that her 11 year old son had been trapped in the Frist Hall elevator.

The child later managed to exit the elevator as it moved to the second floor of the building.

The child was not injured and the police contacted the elevator company to fix the problem.  No further action was taken by police.

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No way to advertise

By James Lowe

Police were flagged down at the 600 block of E 8th Street by a man who had been cut deep by a bottle.

The bone was exposed by the man’s cut.   The cut was stated as resembling a “Nike swoosh”.

The man was transferred to the EMS’ medic six.  The CPD was also contacted that the man was cut near the Trade Center.

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