General Sessions Court Judge Bob Moon said Friday that crime in Chattanooga "has become so rampant that it is no longer possible for the police department to protect our citizens."
He told a woman who had been pulled from her car and beaten in the head that she or her mother needed to "purchase a weapon, obtain a gun permit and learn to protect yourself." The woman moved back in with her mother after the May 4 incident on E. 17th Street.
Judge Moon said, "The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that all citizens have a right to purchase a weapon to defend themselves, their families and their homes - unless there is some disqualification that prevents them from owning a weapon."
He said, "All area of our city are subject to crime, and some areas have very high crime rates and need to be 'overpoliced.'"
Judge Moon said Coolidge Park is one area that needs to be "overpoliced." He said, "I frequently hear of break-ins, thefts and robberies to tourists and citizens in that area. Having a high police presence there is one way you are going to abate it."
Judge Moon raised the bond for Dewayne Beard from $65,000 to $130,000 on especially aggravated robbery and from $15,000 to $50,000 on theft. He bound both cases to the Grand Jury.
The woman said she was driving on E. 17th Street when Beard came riding up on a bicycle and pulled a gold handgun on her. When she refused to get out of the car, he began hitting her in the head with the gun.
He then pulled her out and drove off with her gold 2001 Toyota Corolla.
Police found the woman semi-conscious with severe head injuries. She had to have eight stitches in her head and 10 stitches in her leg, where she was also hit.
Police located Beard at 4724 Tomahawk Dr. and arrested him as he walked out of the residence. He told officers the stolen car was being driven "by one of my goons."
Officers located the vehicle a couple of blocks away on Bella Vista Drive. Blood was found inside the vehicle, and the woman's purse was also inside.
Beard said he threw the gun out of the window while driving through Highland Park.
Beard was allowed out on an OR bond when the case was not ready for a hearing within 10 days.
On May 31, he picked up new charges of aggravated rape and aggravated burglary.
A woman said she was lying nude in her bed and a man began performing a sex act on her. She said when the man then began having sex with her using a condom, she realized it was not her boyfriend.
She said she pulled the sheets up and saw it was Beard.
That case was bound to the Grand Jury earlier.