Woman Still Loves Man Who Chased Her Down And Shot Her In Red Bank; Judge Says She "Needs To Get Smarter"

Monday, July 29, 2013

A woman testified Monday in Red Bank Court that she still loves the man who chased her down and shot her on July 4. Monica Branham asked that charges be dropped against 34-year-old Antwan Lamar Jackson.

Instead, Judge Johnny Houston bound charges of two counts of attempted first-degree murder and two counts of aggravated assault to the Grand Jury against Jackson. Bond remains at $250,000 on each charge.

He bound 29-year-old Tiajuana Jo Ann "Tia" Dieffenderfer Cook, of 4125 Kirkland Ave., to the Grand Jury on the same charges and bond. She was the driver of the car that chased down a vehicle driven by Ms. Branham. The shooting happened on U.S. 27.

Judge Houston told Ms. Branham, "I find it incredible that you say you love a man who chased you down and shot you. I find that astonishing. You need to get smarter."

Ms. Branham said she and Jackson had been together for three years. She said she dropped him off at his residence on Grove Street on July 4 and went directly to pick up a Chattem co-worker, Roderick Hughes. She said they went to her cousin's house in Georgia and watched a movie. She said she had fallen asleep during the movie when she started getting calls from Jackson.

Hughes testified that Ms. Branham the week before had kicked Jackson out, but Ms. Branham denied they had broken up.

Ms. Branham said Jackson was angry about her being with another man and told her he was headed her way. She said she then left to drive Hughes home. But she said on Rossville Boulevard they passed a car driven by Ms. Cook with Jackson as the passenger. She said they spotted them and Ms. Cook spun around to give chase.

She said when she stopped at one red light that Jackson jumped out of the car and came after them. She sped off and ran several red lights before getting on the freeway headed toward Red Bank.

She said Ms. Cook, who she said has a child by Jackson's brother, caught up on the freeway, got ahead of her and then slammed on the brakes. She said after she was forced to stop that Jackson got out and fired several shots into the car.

She said she drove off quickly, almost hitting him. She was driving along on U.S. 27 when she "felt a bullet in my lap." She said she reached down and found that blood was on her hand. She drove to the next exit and went to Hardee's where her clothes were cut off her to get to the wound in her abdomen. She was in the hospital for five days and underwent surgery.

Ms. Branham said she has gone to the jail four times to see Jackson and got to talk to him a couple of times.

Asked why she did that, she said, "I love him and I'm going to be there for him. I don't think any of this would have happened if she hadn't been driving."

Hughes said he got a text message from Ms. Branham on the fourth and they made arrangement for her to pick him up at his house in St. Elmo. He said they were "just friends. We hadn't even kissed."

He said when he heard that Jackson was on the way, he put his shoes on. He said Jackson had been violent to her during their relationship, beating her up in public and in front of family members.

Hughes said, "I'm a real man. I refuse to let another dude put his hands on a female in front of me."

But, with Jackson known to carry a gun, he said it was decided that he be taken home.

He said during the chase, he kept telling Ms. Branham to speed up. He said he tried to get her to drive off when they were stopped on the freeway.

He said she collapsed in the floor after they had reached Hardee's.      

Judge Houston said it has been said that Red Bank is getting more crime, but he said this case "could have happened anywhere. They just happened to stop in Red Bank."

 




HCSO Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team (FAST) Apprehends 2 Wanted Fugitives

Members of the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team (FAST) located and apprehended two wanted fugitives in Hamilton County on Friday. In an attempt to locate them, several digital wanted posters were circulated this week over social media and the HCSO Facebook page with information pertaining to the two fugitives and their charges. Nicholas ... (click for more)

Home In East Lake Damaged By Fire Friday Evening

Chattanooga firefighters were dispatched to a house fire at  3915 6th Avenue  in East Lake at  8:53 p.m.  on Friday. Captain McMillian with Engine 9 was  first on the scene and he reported fire showing from a room at the rear corner of the structure. All occupants were reported to be out of the house. As more crews arrived, Firefighters made ... (click for more)

The Right To Bear Arms, But Not Assault Rifles - And Response (2)

I am not a bleeding heart, liberal, left leaning, anti-second amendment person. I am a politically moderate conservative who believes in the right to bear arms, but not assault rifles. I am also a retired school principal who is tired of seeing innocent children slaughtered in our schools. I am also tired of nothing being done. Yes, mental health should be considered when ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

It wasn’t lost on me that during Valentine Week, when we most remember those we love, this first story was included in my weekly email. As has become my habit, every Saturday I try to come up with a new edition of The Saturday Funnies because I get some delightful ones that are shared by my friends during the week. We must never waste a giggle. So in keeping with my ... (click for more)

Cleveland Still Leading State Wrestling

FRANKLIN, Tenn. – We’re down to the medal rounds here at the TSSAA traditional state wrestling tournament at the Williamson County Agricultural Exposition Park, but nobody has conceded anything to anyone so far. It’s a really close race in two of the three races, but anyone who knows anything about the sport of wrestling will tell you that those last two consolation rounds ... (click for more)

Bradley Can't Keep Up With McMinn's Jones In 5-3A Tourney, 55-54

CLEVELAND, Tenn. – McMinn County senior Taurean Jones was tardy for school Friday. As it turned out, rival Bradley Central paid a heavy price for Jones’ transgression on the basketball court several hours later. McMinn County coach Ed Clendenen dished out the disciplinary penalty and Jones sat out the first quarter of Friday’s District 5-3A basketball tournament game ... (click for more)