2 18-Year-Olds Have Charges Bound To Grand Jury In Home Invasion

Thursday, January 10, 2013
Anthony Watkins
Anthony Watkins

Charges against two 18-year-olds were bound to the Grand Jury after a 76-year-old man told of being the victim of a home invasion in East Chattanooga.

General Sessions Court Judge Lila Statom left the bond for Nakia McMillan, Jr., at $200,000 and for Anthony Watkins at $175,000.

Det. Wilbert McLean testified that Watkins is a validated member of The Cutthroats and McMillan is associated with the gang.

Richard Benford said he was fixing breakfast at his residence on Fairleigh Street when the doorbell rang about 9:30 a.m. on Dec. 16. He said after he opened both doors, he found McMillan and Watkins standing in front of him. He said a third individual put a silver revolver to his head and ordered him back inside and on the floor.

He said he was asked about guns and money and he told them he did not have any. He said, with his head covered while lying on the floor, he could hear 4-5 people running around his house searching for valuables.

Mr. Benford said he could hear them removing his flatscreen TVs from the walls.

He said after 35 minutes to an hour, the robbers spotted police outside. They ran out the back door after one shouted, "Po Po," he said.

Mr. Benford said he had opened the door because his nephew, Ronald Jones, had just left and he thought he had forgotten something and come back. He said it was the nephew, who lives just down the street, who had dialed 911.

During the incident, he said his cellphone was taken and his coffee table was broken. He said three of his four flatscreen TVs were taken off the walls, but all were still in the house, including a couple propped against the kitchen door.

Det. McLean said McMillan claimed that police started chasing him as he was walking down the street listening to music in the rain.

He said Watkins initially denied being involved, but later admitted being part of the robbery squad. He said he did not know the names of two others involved, including the gunman.

Mr. Benford said he had seen the group that robbed him before "walking up and down the street. They stay behind me."

The mother of Watkins said he is active in his church. She said she had heard of The Cutthroats, but did not believe her son was involved with the gang. She said he is from another part of town, but has a cousin in that neighborhood.

Neither individual has a prior criminal record.

Carl Huskins was the prosecutor.   

Defense attorneys are Rich Heinsman and Chris Jones.

Nakia McMillan, Jr.
Nakia McMillan, Jr.

Cleveland City Council Addresses Students Entering The Workforce And Recent Firing Of Lt. Steve Tyson

Cleveland Mayor Tom Rowland told the Cleveland City Council that employers across the state said at a conference that they had three main problems with Tennessee students entering the workforce: "They can't do ninth grade math, coming to work on time, and students passing drug tests." Mayor Rowland said he was surprised by these, especially the last one. The sister of Cleveland ... (click for more)

Bradley County Sheriff's Department Grows, Adding New Positions

Bradley County Sheriff Eric Watson announced to the county commission that his department now had 217 employees, having created several new positions. Sheriff Watson said the department was able to do this through budgeting more efficiently. He also said, "The day shift will have 19 uniformed officers." County Commissioner Charlotte Peak asked him why his department was ... (click for more)

ChattaData Is A Real Advance For The City

This past Tuesday, the city of Chattanooga's new performance management tool called ChattaData was unveiled. As the chairman of the City Council’s Budget & Finance Committee, I am excited to witness the city putting this important information online in a way that is accessible and transparent to all taxpayers. This approach shines light on how we as a city prioritize our ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Apollos Hester’s Way

East View High was trailing at halftime by a pair of touchdowns in last Friday night’s game against unbeaten Vandegrift. But the players at the Georgetown, Texas, school each have a sticker on the back of their helmets that says “TPW” which is a constant reminder that “Tough People Win.” Then there is “attitude” and that is where running back Apollos Hester steps in. In what ... (click for more)

Tennessee Gets Down To Final Preparations For Georgia

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.   – Tennessee’s first Southeastern Conference road trip to Georgia on Saturday (noon kickoff on the SEC Network) will be a homecoming for 17 Vols. That fact is not lost on those players, from freshmen wanting to make a first impression to those, like   A.J. Johnson , playing against the Bulldogs and in their home state for the final time. ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Golf Team Second At Wolf Run Intercollegiate

The Chattanooga Mocs men’s golf team is tied for second after 18 holes at the Wolf Run Intercollegiate. The Mocs and Florida Gators each shot 295 over the opening 18 to trail Illinois by 11 at 285 at Wolf Run Golf Club. The day’s docket had a scheduled 36 holes. Afternoon storms sent teams from the course prior to finishing. The remaining holes will be completed starting at 9:30 ... (click for more)