McMinnville Pair Who Each Had "Turned Life Around" Headed For Lengthy Federal Prison Sentences

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

He said he was getting As and Bs as he closed in on graduating from Middle Tennessee State University and he was holding down a responsible job at a radiology office. He was planning to get married.

She has an "amazing" two-year-son who, she said, caused her to re-evaluate her life and start volunteering to help others.

But both were sentenced this week to lengthy prison sentences in Federal Court in Chattanooga.

Jacob Barnes must do 12 years and seven months.

Lori Cope has to serve 10 years and seven months.

Both McMinnville residents were involved in a four-year meth conspiracy and furnished large amounts of pseudophedrine to meth cooks, prosecutors said.

Both had a number of supporters in the courtroom, including the fiancee, radiologist and office manager for Barnes.

Judge Sandy Mattice said, though both had seemed to make a turnaround after their meth arrests, he had to take into consideration "the lives you ruined, the families you ruined, the communities you ruined."

Both were subject to sentences as long as 20 years behind bars, but got various credits that brought their ranges down.

Judge Mattice noted that Ms. Cope had served 41 months in federal prison on a previous meth conviction. Then she got back involved in a meth ring within a year of getting out.

Ms. Cope said she has taken a job as a hair stylist and has "been trying to pay back to the community."

She added of her son, "Knowing I am going to be responsible for messing this boy up is a punishment that has no comparison."         


PHOTOS: Swearing In Ceremony At Convention Center

County officials were sworn in during ceremonies Tuesday morning at the Convention Center (click for more)

Woman's Body Found In River Was Latasha Nichols

Family members say the woman's body found in the Hiwassee River was that of 34-year-old Latasha Nichols. She was reported missing last month. The family said DNA testing was conclusive that the body was hers. Family members say they want to know what caused her death. The viewing will be Wednesday from 4:30 to 7 p.m. at Jim Rush Funeral Homes in Cleveland. The ... (click for more)

Decimating The Chattanooga Public Library - And Response

Corinne Hill claims that the library is just undergoing a normal weeding process for eliminating books.  She has bragged that she's responsible for the elimination of over 100,000 books - with more to go. "Normal" weeding is not rampant throwing away.  Yes, books go to the Friends for their sale - where they get $2 for a $75 book and thousands wind up being recycled ... (click for more)

The Many Lessons I Learned From Helen McDonald Exum

Helen McDonald Exum was my friend and mentor. As I think of her passing I can only imagine the celebration that is happening in heaven as the news of her arrival is being told. I am sure that there is a party that not only has she organized but that there is not a detail that has been left to chance. I am sure that it is the grandest of events, for you see, she has been planing ... (click for more)

Silverdale Dishes Up 3-1 District 5-A Volleyball Victory

Silverdale Baptist Academy’s volleyball team served up a four-set victory over District 5-A rival Chattanooga Schools for the Arts and Sciences on Tuesday. The Lady Seahawks got a combined 17 service aces from Molly Rumfelt and Caroline Couch and posted a 3-1 win over the Lady Patriots at Silverdale. The set scores were 25-15, 25-18, 22-25, 25-11. Rumfelt, the only senior ... (click for more)

Soddy Daisy Soccer Tops Ooltewah, 5-1

Sophomore midfielder Soni Whalen scored two goals and senior Baylee Burk had a goal and an assist to lead Soddy Daisy to a 5-1 District 5-AAA girls soccer win against host Ooltewah Tuesday night. Carly Pifer and Kelsey Henry also scored for the victorious Trojans. Ooltewah's goal came in the 76th minute by Olivia Tawzer. Soddy Daisy improves to 3-2-1 overall and ... (click for more)