Attorney For Tony Bigoms Urges Jury To Look Closely At Evidence; Prosecutor Says State Has DNA, Cell Phone Proof

Wednesday, April 9, 2014 - by Hollie Webb
Tony Bigoms is led into court
Tony Bigoms is led into court

Defense attorney Jane Buffaloe told a Criminal Court jury on Wednesday that just because Tony Bigoms was a friend who was seen with the murdered patient care technician Dana Wilkes, does not mean he is guilty. She urged the jury to look closely at the evidence throughout the trial.

However, prosecutor Cameron Williams reminded jurors of the DNA evidence and cell phone records. Bigoms' DNA was found in the victim's vehicle and on her bra.

Records show he was the last person to call her phone on the night of her disappearance and placed him near the location of where her vehicle was abandoned. 

Robert Boulware, the son of Dana Wilkes, testified Wednesday morning that when he found his mother's car, it was abandoned on the side of the road in front of the Wilcox Tunnel with blood on the glove compartment.

At this point, he said he had known his mother was missing for several hours. Mr. Boulware was the fourth witness. He received a tip about the location of her car from a concerned co-worker. Ms. Wilkes had not shown up to work that day and no one could get in touch with her. Co-workers who testified said this was very unusual for the woman they described as "very sweet and very dependable." 

Mr. Boulware said he had never heard of Bigoms until he went to search his mother's home. There one of his mother's neighbors handed him a phone, saying someone was on the line asking about his mother. It was Bigoms.

Mr. Boulware said the defendant sounded "concerned" and said he had been with Ms. Wilkes at Walmart the previous night. He said they had gone to get supplies to fix a toilet, after which they parted ways. 

Only one co-worker of Ms. Wilkes said she had ever seen Bigoms before.

When asked by defense attorney Steven Brown, all of her coworkers said they did not know her well personally outside of work. They knew she had married a patient, Tom Wilkes, but they did not know details of her marriage.

Attorney Brown asked Ms. Wilkes' co-workers as well as her son if they had any knowledge of her visiting a drug treatment facility or taking methadone, but all said they did not.

Her former supervisor, Leslie Brown, said, "The first thing you would notice about her is she was just the tiniest thing you've ever seen. She was really petite and full of energy." Ms. Brown also noted that Ms. Wilkes had suffered from diabetes since she was a child and that her health had declined in the past year.

Another witness, Chattanooga Police Officer Reginald Parks, said at the time of Ms. Wilkes' disappearance, her husband had been in jail for approximately a week. Officer Parks said he had been part of the investigation after the missing person report was filed.

He said when he originally talked to Bigoms, Bigoms also told him he had been at Walmart with the victim. He said she gave him a ride and made a comment about "selling pills."

A man who lived near Bigoms also testified. He said on the night of the victim's disappearance, he had given Bigoms a ride to the Family Dollar. He said Bigoms told him he was going to work on a vehicle with a friend. There, he said Bigoms was picked up by a blonde woman driving a green Jeep.

 

 

Attorneys confer with Judge Barry Steelman
Attorneys confer with Judge Barry Steelman
- Photo2 by Hollie Webb

Sign Up To Get The Latest News, Opinions From Chattanoogan.com In Real Time; Win Set Of Chattanooga Photo Books

Sign up for our Facebook and Twitter feeds and you will get the  local news in "real time." You will also be entered for a chance to win the complete set of the Chattanooga Photo Books published by Chattanoogan.com. We will give away three sets of The Remarkable Stokes Collection, Railroads In and Around Chattanooga and Paul Hiener's Historic Chattanooga to our new Facebook ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ADAIR, GENE LAMAR  1400 N CHAMBERLAIN AVENUE APT 8 CHATTANOOGA, 37406  Age at Arrest: 65 years old Arresting Agency: Chattanooga DOMESTIC ASSAULT ----- ANDERSON, SHARI MELISSA  317 LEGGET ROAD SALE CREEK, 37373  Age at Arrest: 25 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County DOMESTIC ... (click for more)

Exempt Volunteer Fire Departments From Procurement Policies - And Response (2)

The Hamilton County Commission just grouped a bunch of departments together in an attempt to reign in the CVB. I haven't spoken to any commissioners, but I truly believe it was unknowingly. By mandating that all non profits that receive 25 percent of their revenue follow county procurement policies, they might as well have padlocked all local volunteer fire departments. We expect ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Ghost & The Eclipse

So you don’t believe in ghosts, haints or spirits? And you don’t believe that smack in the middle of this August, it is going to be nighttime in the middle of the day? Then put on your seatbelt and sit next to me … First, the ghost. The 6 th Congressional District in the State of Georgia is in the northern part of Atlanta’s suburbs. It includes Roswell, Sandy Springs, Dunwoody ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Continues Hot Second-Half Start With Two 6-0 Wins Over Pensacola Sunday

Game One Sunday Andy Wilkins had three hits and two RBI, and Dereck Rodriguez allowed just two hits over six innings as the Chattanooga Lookouts beat the Pensacola Blue Wahoos 6-0 in the first game of a doubleheader on Sunday. Rodriguez (1-0) struck out six and walked two to pick up the win. Up 1-0 in the fourth, Chattanooga added to its lead when LaMonte Wade hit a two-run ... (click for more)

Cleveland High School Selects Joey Knox As Head Wrestling Coach

Cleveland High School has selected Joey Knox as the next head coach for the Blue Raider Wrestling program.  Coach Knox has been with the wrestling program as an assistant since 2013.  During his assistant coaching tenure, the team has secured six Team State Championships, including five individual State Champions and 20 State Medalists.    Cleveland High ... (click for more)