Former Murray County Magistrate Bryant Cochran Indicted

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Former Murray County Magistrate Bryant Cochran, who had been investigated on allegations of having evidence planted on a woman who allegedly spurned his advances, has been indicted.

The six-count indictment from the Northern District of Georgia says he conspired to have a citizen falsely arrested, and also says he was involved in the distribution of meth. 

Attorney McCracken Poston, who represented Murray County citizens Angela Garmley, Joe Garmley and Jason Southern after their highly-publicized "wrongful arrests" on Aug. 15, 2012, and who with Chattanooga attorney Stuart James now represents the three along with three former employees of the Murray County Magistrate Court in civil lawsuits, on Wednesday released the following statement reacting to the federal charges. 

"On behalf of the three citizens who were wrongfully arrested on that August 2012 evening, and on behalf of the three ladies who as employees suffered under the realm of Bryant Cochran's abuses on a daily basis, we want to thank the United States Attorney's Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation for finally bringing these charges, a first step toward justice."

Mr. James said, “As far as the civil claims are concerned this opens new doors for our clients, who are the victims in this claim. Once Cochran is arraigned we will vigorously move forward on our civil claims to protect our client’s rights and interests.”

"For almost two years Mr. Poston and others have alleged wrongdoing by Cochran while in office, ranging from requesting sexual favors from Ms. Garmley while she was a litigant in his chambers; to orchestrating the planting of methamphetamine on Ms. Garmley's car and having her pulled over and arrested for the drugs - all after she went public and to the Judicial Qualifying Commission regarding Cochran's sexual advances and requests.  The three former employees of the Magistrate court have cooperated with federal authorities and have given details of a most unusual workplace headed by Cochran, a sexually-charged  and perverse hostile workplace environment  endured  by the women.

"Former Murray County Deputy Sheriff Josh Greeson and Captain Michael Henderson have pled guilty and are serving time for their roles in the conspiracy to set up and arrest Ms. Garmley. Clifford Joyce, a former tenant of Cochran, has pled guilty to planting the drugs on Ms. Garmley's car, saying he did i t for his landlord. The drug and charges against Ms. Garmley and Mr. Southern were dropped, as well as obstruction charges against Mr. Garmley, as the conspiracy unraveled and was revealed.

Attorney Poston said, "Now that the government has finally made federal criminal charges against the former judge, we look forward to watching Mr. Cochran avail himself of each and every constitutional right and privilege that he wanted to deny my clients."

Click here to read the indictment.



AUDIO: County Commission Meeting 4/25/2018

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ADAMS, KIARA KATHLEEN  180 HALL LANE TRENTON, 307524421  Age at Arrest: 18 years old Arresting Agency:  THEFT OF PROPERTY (CONDUCT INVOLV.MERCHANDISE) UND --- ALLEN, DEDRICK LAMOUNE  125 ALTON PLACE CHATTANOOGA, 37410  Age at Arrest: 47 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton ... (click for more)

Why Can't Someone Unstop The Water Buildup Problem At The I-24 Cummings Highway Exit? - And Response

Exit 174 on westbound Interstate 24 is closed again as is the westbound entrance ramp. Cummings Highway is shut as well. I inquired at TDOT on Dec. 28, 2015, why this continues to happen. The engineer’s response was that the drain from ground west of the interstate runs under private land and cover over it has caused that pipe to collapse. Obviously flow still goes through, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: ‘We’ll Lose The Senate!’

A guy who I admire and respect wrote me yesterday. He had just read my story defending Bob Corker for honoring “The Code” due to his true friendship with Phil Bredesen. He is also no stranger to my vivid dislike of the Republican choice to replace Corker in the Senate. Marsha Blackburn is no match against Bredesen on any tier and it is clearly the Republican Party itself that has ... (click for more)

Peyton Manning To Be Inducted To Academic All America Hall Of fame

Legendary Tennessee quarterback Peyton Manning will be one of the newest members of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-America Hall of Fame when the four-person 2018 Class is inducted this summer.   The Academic All-America Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place at 7:30 p.m. on June 28 at the CoSIDA and NACDA ... (click for more)

Rahaan Gaulden Ready For 2018 NFL Draft

  Rashaan Gaulden is ready for the next level. His nearly four years at the University of Tennessee have prepared him for the NFL and the former Vol defensive back is expected to hear his name called this weekend at the 2018 NFL Draft at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. “There’s a relief and a calmness about it all because of all of the hard work I know I put in ... (click for more)