Westview Elementary Trying To Get Back To Normal; Students/Parents To Ring School And Have Prayer

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Cleanup crews worked late into the night at Westview Elementary School on Tuesday after a 22-year-old North Chattanooga man went on a rampage. Students were back on Wednesday after missing school Tuesday.

School Board member Donna Horn said, "He did a lot of damage in a short time, but the cleanup crews did such a great job. They made it so that the kids didn't notice much that was different."

She said officers had to taze Aaron Roden to get him under control after an alarm went off and they caught him wreaking havoc inside the East Brainerd school a couple of hours before school opening time.

Roden remained in a local hospital Wednesday, while awaiting transfer to the County Jail on two counts of vandalism and two counts of aggravated assault.

Parents, students and school supporters planned to ring the school at 6 p.m. today and have prayer for the school.

Ms. Horn said, "I'm just glad that no kids were inside," while noting that Roden is awaiting charges of cutting another young man deep in the neck.

In that incident on Aug. 4, police said Roden and 19-year-old Graham Winton were at a party in East Ridge, then they argued about a girl after returning to Roden's condominium at One North Shore at 200 Manufacturers Road.

Witnesses said Winton was intoxicated and tried to get too physical with a girl. They said Roden told him to leave a couple of times. Witnesses said Winton went outside to call a cab, but opened the door to ask the address. They said at that point Roden got a knife and went out in a hallway. He returned with the knife, threw it in the sink and washed it.

Witnesses found Winton in the hall suffering from a deep cut to his neck. There was a large amount of blood nearby.

Ms. Horn said there were also pockets of blood at the vandalized school, apparently from cuts to Roden as he broke glass in various parts of the school.

She said he threw bricks through 13 windows, pulled up two toilets, tore up blinds and ceilings and "threw stuff all over the place. He trashed two classrooms, a portable building and an audio-visual room."

Ms. Horn said it appears the damage amount will be in the six figures.

Roden gave his address as Franklin, Tn., on his earlier arrest.

He is due to appear before General Sessions Court Judge Gary Starnes on the initial arrest on Aug. 21.


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