Attorneys Say Tatum Was Terrorizing Employees At Halfway House Prior To Attack By Officers

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Attorneys Stevie Phillips and Bryan Hoss, speaking in behalf of Officer Adam Emmer, said Thursday that an inmate at a halfway house who was beaten by officers started the incident by "terrorizing employees" at the facility, including holding a knife on one.

He made the comments in response to the release of the video of Adam Tatum’s arrest through his attorney Robin Flores. Two officers were fired over the incident and attorney Flores filed a Federal Court lawsuit.

Attorneys Phillips and Hoss said, "Adam Tatum is a convicted, violent felon who was serving the remainder of his sentence at a half-way house. On this night, he was admittedly high on crack cocaine and armed with a deadly weapon.

"After refusing a drug test, Tatum began terrorizing the employees and another inmate. In fear for their lives, the employees locked themselves in a control room while Tatum held an inmate at knifepoint and kicked the control room door. The employees called 911. When the officers arrived, Tatum tried to escape into a weight room where there were other inmates. He reportedly said “[expletive] ya’ll” and “take me to jail.”

"Chattanooga officers are trained to never assume that a suspect has only 1 weapon. This City has seen officers killed in the line of duty after deescalating force only to learn that the criminal has a second weapon. Here, Tatum turned on these officers with a knife and attacked. He repeatedly ignored the lawful orders to 'stop resisting' and 'put your hands behind your back.' The officers can be heard on this video commanding him to stop more than 80 times.

"The city’s internal investigation states that these 'officers followed the Use of Force Continuum as best as possible.' A Hamilton County grand jury failed to indict and found no evidence to bring charges. There are no criminal charges facing these officers, nor should there be.

"As a result of Tatum’s actions against Officer Emmer and other officers, Tatum pled guilty to four counts of assault and is serving time in Silverdale. These Chattanooga Police Officers were only present because of Tatum’s decision to get high on crack and assault innocent people."

City Council Approves Tax Break For Volkswagen Supplier Gestamp

The City Council on Tuesday approved new tax breaks for a major Volkswagen supplier in Chattanooga. Gestamp already has a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) at the VW supplier park at the Enterprise South Industrial Park. It recently acquired 29 acres at the former Brachs candy plant on Jersey Pike. Gestamp had asked that the PILOT be extended to the new property. Council ... (click for more)

City Settles United Petcare Lawsuit For $150,000

The city is paying $150,000 as its portion of the settlement reached in a four-year-old lawsuit brought by a pet supply firm at Hamilton Place Mall against the city and the McKamey Animal Trust. City Attorney Wade Hinton said McKamey reached a separate settlement that is covered by its insurance carrier. He said it covers McKamey employees that were sued. The attorneys reached ... (click for more)

A New Commercial Look For Signal Mountain

A speaker at the Signal Mountain Town Council meeting last night presented some very interesting information about the council’s new bigger and brighter vision of our commercial area. Councilman Spalding presented a list of sign changes to the Design Review Commission that the council wants and several of those items were approved last night.  Still to come on the list are ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: It Was Our Tool Shed

Some said the huge beams had been soaking in creosote for two or three years when the men finally stacked them to dry. They were long, about 20 feet each, and thick – maybe eight inches. I remember they were 14 inches wide but the biggest thing I remember was that it was the ugliest lumber I ever saw. They cured the beams for one entire hot summer in the Tool Shed, a huge building ... (click for more)

Hixson Sweeps Central For First Region 3-AA Volleyball Title

It was a rematch of last week's District 6-AA volleyball final on Tuesday night at Hixson for first place in Region 3-AA. The results were the same as last week, but the second time around wasn't nearly as close as the Hixson Lady Wildcats played one of their best matches of the season in sweeping the Lady Pounders by scores of 25-14, 25-14 and 25-22. Hixson earned its spot ... (click for more)

Ooltewah Defeats Walker Valley, 3-1, For Region 3-3A Title

(Story will be updated) Ooltewah wasn’t about to let Tuesday’s volleyball match against Walker Valley go to five games like the previous two played out. So, the Lady Owls (44-11) stopped the action after four games to claim a 3-1 victory and nail down their third Region 3-3A championship in four years at Edward M. Foster Gymnasium. Game scores were 25-17, 25-20, 17-25, ... (click for more)