Final Defendant Charged In British Woods Apartments Slaying Goes On Trial

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

The final defendant charged in the murder of 46-year-old Bernard Hughes and the wounding of Timothy Westfield at the British Woods Apartments in 2010 went on trial Tuesday morning.

Harold Francis "Bam" Butler, 33, is facing charges of felony murder, attempted first-degree murder and aggravated robbery in the courtroom of Judge Don Poole.

Unjolee Moore is already facing a life-in-prison sentence after he was convicted earlier. Moore, 27, was found guilty by a jury in the courtroom of Judge Poole after a week-long trial in June.

Prosecutors said Moore was the driver in the June 10, 2010, robbery and murder on Oakwood Drive.

John "Cut Throat" Simpson, who was allegedly one of two gunmen who shot the two men on the porch of Hughes' apartment, earlier pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. He has not been sentenced.

Authorities said Butler was the other triggerman and that Steven James Ballou, 33, was also involved. Ballou pleaded guilty in mid-July to aggravated robbery and was given a 12-year prison sentence.

The jury heard three 911 calls, including mention that two black males wearing masks had been at the porch, then left in a gold Maxima.

On one of the calls, a woman was screaming, "Breathe, Bernard, breathe. But a man on the phone said, "This man's gone." 

Attorney Jay Perry told the jury there were issues in the case about the conduct of police. He said a high-ranking police official on two occasions had instructed the lead detective on the case not to collect a cellphone that belonged to one of the parties involved.   

Cameron Williams and Lance Pope are the prosecutors.




Burglary Suspects Arrested By Chance, Due To Malfunctioning Tag Lights

Hamilton County deputies arrested burglary suspects by chance after pulling over a vehicle because of malfunctioning tag lights on July 25. When deputies walked up to the vehicle, they noticed the rear seat passenger making very sudden movements. They also saw him stuff something into a back pack.  While at the window, deputies noticed a large knife lying out in the ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Man Arrested On Child Rape Charges

A Chattanooga man was taken into custody after he admitted to police that he raped his two-and-a-half-year-old daughter. According to police, the young girl was with her grandmother the following day and told her what her father, Michael Skellenger, had done.  Her grandmother immediately rushed her to the hospital for an examination. They were directed to the Children's ... (click for more)

Senator Bob Corker: An Open Letter To Tennesseans

We are incredibly fortunate to live in a state in which companies worldwide are clamoring to establish a presence. Many attribute it to our pro-business culture, well-prepared workforce, low tax environment, right-to-work policies, and engaged citizenry.  That is why the announcement by Volkswagen to build its midsize sports utility vehicle and establish the South’s ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Scottsboro’s Pat Trammell

I got a warm feeling Tuesday when it was announced Pat Trammell will be among those in the inaugural class of the Jackson County (Ala.) Sports Hall of Fame. When the august group is enshrined at Scottsboro’s Goose Pond Civic Center on Nov. 1, most folks won’t even know who Pat Trammell was but I knew all about him in my very first year as a fledgling sports writer back in 1967 and, ... (click for more)

Recap of 17 Stop, Prep Football Tour

Starting at Soddy Daisy at 7:44 a.m. and leaving Silverdale 14 hours later ( 9:58 p.m.), the fifth annual Chattanoogan.com prep football tour made whistle stops at 17 schools covering 220 miles.   The Chattanooga Jamboree is Aug. 15-16 at Finley Stadium and the season openers are Thurs. Aug. 21   - Cleveland vs. McCallie (Finley Stadium) ... (click for more)

NPSL National Championship To Be Played At Red Bulls Arena

The NPSL announced on Monday that the national championship match between Chattanooga FC and the Red Bulls U23 will be played on Saturday at Red Bull Arena in Harrison, New Jersey.  The match will be played following an MLS match between New York Red Bulls and the New England Revolution.   Local fans took to social media to appeal for the game to be played in Chattanooga. ... (click for more)