Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - June 21, 2005, Athens, Alabama
Tuesday', June 21, 2005
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Hey, Sound Off:
I must be the “rich person-' who the writer in this Sunday's Sound Off referred to. Sorry, but I'm not “rich.” In fact, I would bet I've lived on a smaller monthly income than this person and I didn't blame it on someone else. I am different from that person in many other ways. First, I take responsibility for my situation in life. I don’t blame the president and the “rich” for my problems. I also don’t expect to sit back and have others take care of me. What
By Sonny Turner
Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely said investigators have no suspects in the Sunday morning shooting of Athens Police Sgt. Brett Constable, but he believes the substantial reward he is offering will lead to a break in the case.
“There were more than 350 people out there at the time and it's sad when you got that many people at one place who didn't see or know something. They have not been v ery helpful to law enforcement,” the sheriff said.
Constable, 39, was shot in the chest by an individual who Constable said appeared to be a young black man who was approximately 5-10, weighing about 185 pounds. He was shot in his pickup truck after responding to a disturbance call at the American Legion building on Cloverleaf Drive shortly after 1 a.m.
Blakely said investigators believe the suspect was at a party
at the American Legion building off U.S. 72 East. At that party, the sheriff said many of the people there were juveniles from Athens and Decatur with no superv ision or security to prevent something like that from happening.
“We arrested a bunch — a full van load of them on drug offenses or for disorderly conduct,” Blakely said. “I understand the city has had problems out there before. That kind of party definitely invites problems to crop up."
The American Legion building is owned by local the veterans organization that rents out the building for such gatherings, police said.
“That’s not the first time we’ve been out there on a disturbance call.” said Capt. Tracy Harrison. “With that many people, it’s a dangerous place for police to patrol when there is a lot of drinking and partying going on.”
See Probe, Page 2A
News-Courier Kim Rvnders
Athens Police Sgt. Brett Constable talks to reporters and investigators at his home Monday. He was shot in the chest and thumb Sunday morning by a man police had not yet apprehended Monday night. Constable says he will return to work today.
More on Munchkin Getting deep
Oz’ Munchkin Jerry Maren and his wife ^ f East Limestone Coach Phil Cavnar
talk to Athens families. Coming Wednesday <: Jii develops depth for Indians ib
talk to Athens families. Coming Wednesday < »1 develops depth for Indians IBThe News-CourierServing Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Future
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Stanley Britton of Athens
Athens officer shot
Authorities continue search for suspect in Sunday’s shooting
if we all had the attitude of the writer? No one would be working and paying the taxes so the “poor people” could get a hand out. The bible talks about “reaping what you sew.” If you are poor, it is most likely your own doing. If you are too sick, injured or old to earn a living, there are plenty of federal, state and charitable programs to help. Let’s stop blaming everyone else for our problems.
May God have mercy on the souls of the people who take no responsibility and expect someone else to take care of them.
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Betty Jean Murrah
Daily Bible Moment
§3>hall the one who contends with the Almighty correct him?
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Two men charged after leading police on highway chase
By Sonny Turner
Athens police charged two men Saturday night with receiving stolen property following a high-speed chase with police that ended in a wreck on U.S. 31 South in Athens.
Zhavelle Letrelle Vick, 24, of 5645 Raintree Place, Columbus, Ohio, the subject of a manhunt Saturday night, was charged w ith first-degree receiving stolen property. A passenger in the vehicle, Jason Christopher Martin, 24, of 3918 Timbercrest Dr., Huntsville, was also arrested and charged with first-degree receiving stolen property.
Investigators said the two were in a Suburban stolen earlier in Virginia.
When police attempted to pull over the vehicle Saturday afternoon, the driver sped off. The high-speed pursuit went on for miles before the suspects wrecked the vehicle near Southside Baptist Church on U.S. 31 South.
Police said it appeared when the vehicle went out of control and wrecked that it ran over the driver. But police said the driver jumped up and ran.
Police used tracking dogs from the Limestone Correctional Facility to track the suspect. The passenger on the car was arrested at the wreck scene.
Capt. Tracy Harrison said the driver was apprehended later off U.S. 72 East near Jimmy Smith GMC Pontiac.
Cross Key resident still concerned by road limits
By Sonny Tl rner
Even though he was told he can travel with his heavy equipment on all county roads provided the job he is working is in Limestone County, Cross Key resident Jerry Miller still claimed Monday the county’s new weight limit laws on some county roads will put him out of business.
“As long as it’s a local job you can use all our roads to and from the job,” Miller was told Monday by Limestone County District 4 Commissioner Bill Daws. “I'm telling you to go back to work because you can.”
But Miller refused to accept the explanation commissioners gave him saying the county resolution to set 15-ton weight limits on roads in his area of business on Easterferry Road will "put me out of business.”
“We’re telling you that if you are working a local job, the sign says you can travel the roads.” said Commission Chairman David Seibert. “If you are working out of county all you have to do is travel the designated roads. It’s that simple.” Miller, who owns and operates a backhoe
business from his home, said he has one of the oldest businesses in the county and by having to go around certain roads to get to jobs, will cost him money. He asked commissioners to change the weight limits signs it imposed last month.
“The commissioners are not going to change the signs,” said Seibert. “It will be up to you when you can go back to work. There is nothing stopping that.”
The weight limit law was placed on some county roads because commissioners said big trucks, such as those coming from the rock quarry at Cross Key, are tearing up the roads
In other business Monday, the commission voted to vacate a portion of Brigadoon Drive; approved sending Limestone County Emergency Management Agency Director Spencer Black to Washington D.C. June 25-July 1 via a county vehicle to attend meetings for Homeland Security money; approved a S19.400 bid from Cloverleaf Dodge in Athens on a vehicle for District 2; employed James Heath Moss as a
See Limits, Page 2A
Constable back home, lucky to be alive’
By Sonna Ti rner
sonnyia athensnews-courier.com Being overweight is supposed to be hazardous to your health. But m the case of Athens Police Sgt. Brett Constable it may have saved his life.
At least that is what medical experts at Huntsville Hospital told Constable’s wife, Becky, Sunday while treating him in the emergency room for a gunshot wound to the chest.
“The nurse looked up at me and told me that she didn't mean to be disrespectful, but the fact that he is so big or his
thickness saved his life,” Mrs. Constable said Monday at home with her husband at her side. “1 told him, Honey, you can eat all the donuts you want from now on.”
Doctors told Constable. 39, a 14-year veteran of the Athens police force who is now an investigator with the department, that the bullet that first glanced off his left arm. then passed through his right thumb and into his middle to right chest area before exiting his arm pit, could have easily
See Constable, Page 2A
This “Welcome Home Brett” sign was posted in the yard of Athens Police Sgt. Brett Constable on Thomas Street Monday. The officer was shot Sunday morning after answering a disturbance call to the American Legion building at right. He came home from the hospital Sunday night.