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Morgan County executive asks Haslam, TDOC to investigate prison issues
WVLT Friday August 21, 2015

Morgan County Executive Don Edwards is asking Governor Bill Haslam and the Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Corrections, Derrick Schofield, to conduct an internal investigation after allegations of understaffing have been made by staff at the Morgan County Correctional Complex. According to WVLT, Edwards says that he is very troubled by the allegations that Morgan Countian Woody Garrett, the prison guard who was injured in the vicious attack on Tuesday, was the result of staffing deficiencies which seem to be a consequence of the 28 day work cycle aka, the 6 on 3 off shift strategy. In a letter, Edwards also challenges claims by TDOC in Nashville that attacks on prison guards have declined. He says TDOC, "has been downgrading the categorization of staff assaults to a lesser offense which undermines the respect which the inmates must have for the correctional staff." Edwards is asking Gov. Haslam and Commissioner Schofield to let the staff speak freely and honestly, and take corrective measures immediately. In a release to WVLT, Edwards also shared letters dating back to last year which express concern for the 28 day work cycle and a resolution asking the schedule be dropped.

Murfreesboro Social Worker Charged With Solicitation of a Minor

Murfreesboro Social Worker Charged With Solicitation of a Minor
TBI: Susan Niland/Peg Broadcasting News Friday August 21, 2015

A Rutherford County social worker has been charged with solicitation of a minor. Brandon Micheal Sopko, 27, of Murfreesboro was arrested Thursday by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. TBI Agents responded to an advertisement on a social media website posted by an individual indicating he was looking for a teen-aged girl for the purpose of sex. During the course of the investigation, an Agent, posing as a minor female, communicated with this individual and the two arranged to meet early Thursday morning in a Murfreesboro parking lot. Thats where agents apprehended him. Sopko, a Murfreesboro social worker, was booked into the Rutherford County jail on a $7,000 bond. (Photo Courtesy TBI)


Tennessee Education Officials Discuss New Assessment Test
AP Friday August 21, 2015

State education officials say a new assessment in math and English for students in grades 3-11 will provide a better measurement of their progress and make sure they're on track to succeed after graduation. Education Commissioner Candice McQueen and members of her staff met with reporters on Thursday to discuss TNReady, which is part of the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program, or TCAP. TCAP includes grades 3-8 achievement tests and end-of-course exams for science, social students, math and English. Officials say the new test in math and English is designed to "assess true student understanding," not just memorization and test-taking skills. The new test will also be given online, which officials say will further help prepare students for life in the real world.


Tennessee's Unemployment Rate for July 5.7% Friday August 21, 2015

The Tennessee preliminary unemployment rate for July was 5.7 percent, unchanged from the June revised rate. The U.S. preliminary rate for July was 5.3 percent, also unchanged from the prior month. Over the past year, Tennessee's unemployment rate decreased from 6.6 percent to 5.7 percent while the national rate declined from 6.2 percent to 5.3 percent. Total nonfarm employment increased 1,300 jobs from June to July. The largest increases occurred in leisure/hospitality, manufacturing, and wholesale trade.


Four Charged in Bee Hive Lane Home Burglary
CPD/Peg Broadcasting News Friday August 21, 2015

Crossville Police have charged four people with Aggravated Burglary of a Bee Hive Lane home. According to reports, officers responded to a burglar alarm, where they found two men and two women. Authorities say the suspects claimed to be at the Tree House when they noticed the home was for sale. Police say the suspects parked their vehicle at Roane State Community College on Cook Road and walked a half mile through the field and the woods and into the back yard of the residence. They claimed they entered the house through an unlocked door just to look around because the home was for sale. The homeowner was notified and told police that nothing appeared to have been damaged or stolen. The homeowner said there is someone living at the house but was not there when the suspects gained entry. James Donald Bell, 28, of Crossville, was charged with Aggravated Burglary and also with having a Prohibited Weapon after brass knuckles were found on his person during a pat down. Coe Issac Blaylock, 21, of Pleasant Hill; Lisa Lynn Hodges, 38, of Crossville; and Jessica Leann Meadows, 22, of California were also charged with Aggravated Burglary.


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