Atwood Gets 9-Year Prison Sentence In Traffic Death Of Friend

Monday, May 20, 2013
Bobby Atwood
Bobby Atwood

A man who police said was traveling 70 miles per hour on a side street in St. Elmo when he wrecked and killed one of his close friends was sentenced Monday to nine years in prison.

Criminal Court Judge Rebecca Stern told Robert Allen "Bobby" Atwood, 22, "There is way too much of this going on. Young people need a wakeup call. Let the message go out."

Atwood will be eligible for parole consideration after serving 30 percent of the term. He was taken into custody after the ruling.

James Michael Travillian was killed in the 4:30 a.m. wreck on Dec. 4, 2011, when Atwood "was showing what his Camaro would do," prosecutor Kate Lavery said.

Traffic Investigator Joe Warren said the 1995 Camaro was on the narrow Tennessee Avenue when it left the roadway, struck a fence and three trees, and then impacted with two vehicles and a house. He said the car came to rest perched on a Chevrolet Blazer in the front yard of the damaged house.

The heaviest damage was on the passenger side. The passenger was ejected and was dead at the scene.

Both of the occupants of the vehicle had been drinking heavily, it was stated. The victim was at almost three times the drunk level.

Neither was wearing a seat belt.

Investigator Warren said Atwood had a fist fight about a month earlier with Dylan Harmon. He said before the wreck Atwood had driven to Harmon's home and did a burnout in the front yard. He said Harmon came after Atwood, but did not find him until he came upon the wreck.

Wende Reinhart, the victim's mother, said she begged Atwood to get help for his drinking and helped him get out on bond. She claimed he came to the funeral drinking and was also driving and drinking the day after he got out of jail.

Joshua Travillian said Atwood had shown "no remorse to my family."

Glenda Atwood, the defendant's mother, denied that he had been driving while on bond on the case.

She said her son keeps a bottle of the victim's ashes near his bed and has a tattoo of his name and a matching tattoo that the victim sported.

Ms. Atwood said the victim "will always be a part of our family even if he's in heaven." 

She said her son's father had been an alcoholic and violent.

Prosecutor Lavery said Atwood began drinking when he was 13 and also started using cocaine, amphetamines and hallucinogens at an early age. He smoked marijuana daily, she said.

Witnesses said Atwood was best friends with Joshua Travillian. They had been at the Electric Cowboy in Brainerd that night along with James Travillian. Joshua Travillian dropped them off, then Atwood and James Travillian decided to go back out, including making a cigarette run.

Defense attorney Hank Hill said Atwood voluntarily went through a CADAS program and has been clean while on a device that detects drinking and drugs.

Atwood earlier entered a guilty plea to vehicular homicide.

He faced 8-12 years.


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: BAILEY, DEMETRIUS CORDELL  2302 CORRAL TRAIL CHATTANOOGA, 37421  Age at Arrest: 37 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga POSS.A FIREARM DURING COMMISSIION OR ATTEMPT TO CO POSS.OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE ANALOGUE FOR RESALE --- BARDE, ERIC LOGAN  4008 KAY DRIVE RINGGOLD, 30736  Age ... (click for more)

New Legislation Being Filed Aimed At Protecting Elderly And Vulnerable Adults From Abuse

Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris (R-Collierville), Rep. Kelly Keisling (R-Byrdstown), Senate Health and Welfare Committee Chairman Rusty Crowe (R-Johnson City), Senator Todd Gardenhire (R-Chattanooga), Rep. Kevin Brooks (R-Cleveland) and Rep. Dale Carr (R-Sevierville) Monday announced comprehensive legislation to address abuse of elderly or vulnerable adults in Tennessee.   ... (click for more)

Embrace America - And Response (2)

Okay, Hollywierd we get it. The world of entertainment and cinema arts do not support President Trump. But for all their derisive and divisive speech, truth remains. People who support conservative values do not hate children, we do not hate immigrants, we do not hate other races and ethnicities although that is all you trumpet at every opportunity.  What we do support ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Way 'Over The Line'

Every day last week a Chattanooga woman sent me a press release for a “Recess Week of Action,” which was the greatest example of “an exercise in futility” that I can recall in recent years. I absolutely refuse to attend, write, or publicize such a group of admittedly-questionable political agitators. Please, I have never seen anything like this! Sometime soon, I suspect, the truth ... (click for more)

Bearettes Pound Stone Memorial Into Submission 75-49

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – Bradley Central wasn’t about to let the rematch with Stone Memorial to be a nail-biter. The top-ranked and undefeated Bearettes (31-0) had a 29-23 halftime lead and then destroyed the Lady Panthers with a stellar second half and cruised to a 75-49 victory Monday in the Region 3-3A semifinals at Jim Smiddy Arena. Bradley Central outscored Stone Memorial ... (click for more)

Red Bank Girls Eliminated By Sequoyah In Region 3-AA

ATHENS, Tenn. – It will be a rematch of the District 5-AA finals when the girls title is decided here at McMinn County High School Wednesday night for the Region 3-AA basketball championship. The McMinn Central Chargerettes and Sequoyah Lady Chiefs both advanced with semifinal victories on Monday and neither were close games. McMinn Central improved to 27-3 with its 66-30 ... (click for more)