Criminal Defense Attorneys Seek To Find Solution To Logjam Between Judge Steelman, Public Defender Garth

Monday, August 27, 2012

Leaders of the local chapter of the Tennessee Criminal Defense Attorneys Association are offering to find a "compromise" to break the logjam that is causing public defender cases to back up in the courtroom of Criminal Court Judge Barry Steelman.

Public Defender Ardena Garth has sought to have Judge Steelman recuse himself from 150 cases of indigent defendants, saying he has been "venomous" toward her office and is biased against her and her staff.

At the start of a hearing on the motions on Monday afternoon, attorneys Hank Hill and Rich Heinsman asked for a couple of days "to see if some common ground can be found."

Attorney Hill said, "If there is any middle ground, we'd like to find it."

He said the attorneys plan "to make a proposal to the court as a compromise and a solution to all of this. That's our hope."

Attorney Hill said a motion to intervene could be filed Tuesday and the attorneys be ready by Wednesday. Judge Steelman reset the motions for Friday.

He said, "I don't know what is contemplated by this," but he said he was not opposed to the delay.

Ms. Garth also asked that the defense attorneys have time to intervene.

One woman who is indigent told the court she wanted to resolve her case, saying it had been worked out that she had a bed waiting at a rehab place. However, Judge Steelman said he could not act on her case while the motion to recuse is still active. He said the public defender's office was free to try to work out the case with another judge.



Many Photos Of Fairyland Development Featured In New Hiener Photo Book

Many photos of the Fairyland development on Lookout Mountain are featured in the new historic photo book being published by Garnet and Frieda Carter carried out the fanciful development in the 1920s. It was during the construction that the game of miniature golf was invented when a golf ball was hit through a drain pipe at the job site. It was first called ... (click for more)

Lookout Mountain, Ga., Holds Hearing On Property Rate Issue; Compromise Sought On Short Term Vacation Rentals

All property in Walker County, Georgia was reassessed this year, including that in the Town of Lookout Mountain, Ga. where some increased in value, some decreased and others stayed the same. The city council encouraged the property owners with increased assessments to appeal the change. Not knowing if the property values, in the end, would be up or down, the council made a decision ... (click for more)

Literacy Is Critical

Government spending is often portrayed as a freight train "quickly running out of track." And there is some truth to that statement. There is not an endless supply of money to fund every good idea that comes along, and we must acknowledge that problem. Fiscal responsibility is a must.  That is why spending on priority issues like public education is important. You can spend ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Prayer Over Despair

As a strong proponent of early voting, I joined hundreds at the Hamilton County Election Commission headquarters on Amnicola Highway yesterday to exercise what I consider one of our greatest freedoms – “for the people, by the people.” Candidly, I have never been as upset or as disappointed over my choices for President in my life. Locally I am fine with our candidates but to pick ... (click for more)

Baylor Bounces Back To Earn Finals Berth Against Briarcrest

MURFREESBORO – There’s good news and bad news concerning the Baylor volleyball team. The good news is that they will be playing Briarcrest on Friday morning at MTSU’s Murphy Center for the Division II-AA state volleyball title. The bad news is that they’ll be facing that monumental challenge without the services of their best player and team leader Gabby Gray. The Lady ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Advances To Class AA State Final

MURFREESBORO – Never accuse the Signal Mountain volleyball team of ever doing anything the easy way. The Lady Eagles, who entered the TSSAA state tournament here as a possible favorite to win the Class AA division, started off the tournament on the wrong foot Wednesday as they lost to defending champ Sullivan South in their first match. They staved off elimination with a 3-0 ... (click for more)