thrashes part of Overton County
dollar suit filed against county
Unemployment rate up to 6.2% in Tennessee
thrashes part of Overton County
photos by Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
A severe thunderstorm accompanied by hail and high winds rolled
through part of Overton County on Tuesday evening, June 14. The
Rickman area was hit particularly hard. A trailer sitting in a field
off of West Wilmoth Road (above) was blown apart by the high winds.
Debris from the trailer was scattered across the road and into the
adjacent field. The trailer did not appear to be inhabited. Trees
along West Wilmoth Road also showed signs of storm damage, with
some large trees broken down.
dollar suit filed against county
An arrest of the wrong man has landed Overton County
in a multi-million dollar lawsuit filed in White County on Wednesday,
Overton County, Overton County Sheriff's Department,
Overton County Sheriff William "Bud" Swallows, an as yet
unidentified Overton County deputy (referred to as John Doe 1),
White County, White County Sheriff's Department, and as yet unidentified
White County deputies or the sheriff (referred to as John Does 2-10,
along with NewsChannel 5 Inc. and Meredith Corporation (the parent
company of Nashville Channel 4) are all named as defendants in a
civil action brought by White County residents Bradley S. Simpson
and his wife, Candace Simpson.
The lawsuit alleges: "On or about February 20,
2005, in the early evening hours, (Bradley) Simpson was arrested,
or in the alternative taken into custody against his will, at his
home by the White County Sheriff's Department and/or John Does 2-10,
pursuant to false information provided by Defendants Overton County,
Sheriff Swallows, and/or John Doe 1, and Simpson was told by the
arresting officer or deputies that he was under arrest for three
counts of attempted murder. Simpson denied any involvement in any
attempted murders or shootings, and expressed to the officers or
deputies that he had no idea what they were talking about.
"Upon being arrested or taken into custody against
his will, Simpson was placed in handcuffs by one or more of John
Does 2-10, and was taken to a police vehicle where he was held for
approximately one and one-half hours. During the time he was held
in the police vehicle, one or more of John Does 2-10 searched Simpson's
and Candace Simpson's home and vehicles and questioned Candace Simpson
and one or more of their children regarding the location of a gun.
Simpson and Candace Simpson told the officers or deputies that they
did not own or possess a gun.
"Simpson was transported by one or more of John
Does 2-10, White County, and White County Sheriff's Department to
the White County Justice Center and placed in a holding cell at
approximately 9:40 p.m.
"After some period of time, Overton County, Sheriff
Swallows, and John Doe 1 went into Simpson's holding cell in White
County where Simpson again denied any involvement in any attempted
murders. Overton County, Sheriff Swallows, and/or John Doe 1 shackled
Simpson and walked him out to an Overton County vehicle. Simpson
was then transported by Overton County, Sheriff Swallows, and/or
John Doe 1 from the White County Jail to Overton County Justice
"Simpson expressed to Overton County, Sheriff
Swallows, and/or John Doe 1 that he had previously been wrongfully
arrested for armed robbery and specifically identified Brandon Simpson
by name as the person who was eventually charged with the armed
"While at the Overton County Justice Center,
Sheriff Swallows and/or John Doe 1 showed Simpson the mug shot of
Brandon Simpson, and Simpson identified Brandon Simpson as the person
with whom he was previously confused in regard to the armed robbery
The lawsuit further alleges: "Also while at
the Overton County Justice Center, Sheriff Swallows telephoned one
of the eyewitnesses to the three shootings and placed Simpson on
the phone with the eyewitness. The eyewitness asked Simpson if he
is the one who has a wife and children, to which Simpson replied
that he is. The eyewitness thereafter said to Simpson that he had
told the officers that there are two "Brad Simpsons" and
to not arrest Simpson.
"Overton County, Sheriff Swallows, and/or John
Doe 1 released Simpson in the early morning hours of February 21,
2005. Simpson had no involvement in any of the three shootings for
which he was arrested and detained or taken and held in custody
against his will. Furthermore, Simpson had no knowledge of the three
shootings for which he was arrested and detained or taken and held
in custody against his will until after he was arrested and detained
or taken and held in custody against his will. In fact, subsequent
to Simpson's release, a different person was arrested for the same
alleged crimes for which Simpson was arrested and detained or taken
and held in custody against his will.Ó
The Simpsons are asking for compensatory damages in
the amount of $3 million and punitive damages in the amount of $3
million against White County, White County Sheriff's Department,
John Does 2-10, Overton County, Overton County Sheriff's Department,
John Doe 1, and Sheriff Swallows for violation of their civil rights,
defamation, intrusion into seclusion invasion of privacy, false
arrest, false imprisonment, negligence and gross negligence, outrageous
conduct, negligent infliction of emotional distress, and loss of
consortium, plus legal fees and expenses and other damages permitted
The suit also seeks an award to the maximum extent
permitted by the Tennessee Governmental Tort Liability Act for the
The civil action seeks $3 million in compensatory
and punitive damages against Channel 4 and Channel 5 for defamation
and false light invasion of privacy.
The suit alleges that Channel 4 broadcast a news report
with a photograph of Bradley Simpson after he had been released
by Overton County authorities, and the suit alleges that a newscast
reported that he had been charged with three counts of attempted
The suit alleges that Channel 5 also broadcast a
news report with a photograph of Bradley Simpson after he had been
released by Overton County authorities, and the suit alleges that
a newscast stated that he had a criminal history.
The civil suit requests a 12-person jury trial.
rate up to 6.2% in Tennessee
Tennessee's unemployment rate for the month of May
is 6.2%, up 0.4 percentage point from the seasonally adjusted April
rate of 5.8%, according to Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development
The national unemployment rate for May is 5.1%, down
slightly from the April rate of 5.2%.
"The household survey for May shows an unusual
increase in unemployed youth entering the workforce," Commissioner
Neeley said. "Some school systems across the state ended earlier
this year, sending more teens looking for summer work in May."
The April-to-May figures show increases in leisure
and hospitality jobs, up by 4,500. Construction jobs rose by 2,500
and manufacturing jobs rose 1,600.
Month-to-month seasonal decreases took place in government
jobs, down 3,700.
Professional/scientific/technical services jobs decreased
2,500 and educational services jobs fell 1,300.
From May 2004 to May 2005, trade/transportation/utilities
increased by 6,600, with retail trade contributing 4,400 of these
Jobs in health care/social assistance rose by 6,100.
Jobs decreased in accommodation by 1,700, information by 1,400,
and state government educational services by 1,100.
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Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston, Tennessee 38570