New Date Chosen For Wichman Fraud Case

Wednesday, August 14, 2019 - by Joseph Dycus

A Chattanooga business owner’s lawyer, who alleged the media was “easily manipulated” by victims, will have his client back in court on Sept. 19.

Trent Wichman, the owner of Wichman Monuments, is facing possible prison time after his company did not finish headstones for several customers.

According to the victims, he took money for these headstones, but never followed up on these commitments before closing his company.

Wichman was then charged with eight counts of theft of property. Benjamin McGowan, his lawyer, was thought to possibly be considering a plea deal before today, but a plea deal was not mentioned during his time in Judge Barry Steelman’s courtroom in Criminal Court.

After speaking with his lawyer for a few minutes, Wichman approached the stand with the attorney.

“There have been individuals who, for whatever reason, are not necessarily victims of the case who are interested in creating some media enthusiasm about this case,” said the defense lawyer, “and so what I think we’re dealing with here is pressure coming in from the outside, that is in no small part, interfering with the ability to actually discern who has not been made a fool and who hasn’t.” 

He called the media accounts of the story “incomplete, at best.” He also said that while the business did close, all assets had been handed over to another party, who could have done more after the “Wichman” was taken out of “Wichman Monuments.”

Prosecuting attorney Andrew Coyle said there had been no kind of offer made to the defendant. He said there were eight victims in the case, and that the state had contacted seven of them, and they were in the process of trying to reach the eighth.

Following these statements, the new court date was agreed upon. Afterward, Mr. McGowan, said, “I don’t comment on pending litigation. What we have to say, we’ll say in court,” said the lawyer, “I think the media has proven itself to be very easily manipulated, with respect to these alleged victims, and that I’m not making any comment on the record.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


4 Books In Chattanooga Photo Series Are Available At Zarzour's During Mainx24 On Saturday

Police Blotter: Homeless Man Helps Himself To Residence Inn Shower; Father Uses Daughter's Shower, Then Is Evicted As He Tries To Snooze On Couch

Upcoming City Council Agenda


All four books in the Chattanooga Photo Series of old Chattanooga pictures will be available at Zarzour's Restaurant on the Southside during the Mainx24 festival on Saturday. Shannon Fuller ... (click for more)

At the Residence Inn on Center Street, the housekeeping manager said an unknown male (believed to be homeless) locked himself in a room that had been assigned to be cleaned and took a shower. ... (click for more)

Here is the upcoming City Council agenda: I. Call to Order by Chairman Oglesby. II. Pledge of Allegiance/Invocation (Councilwoman Coonrod). III. Special Presentation. Order ... (click for more)


Breaking News

4 Books In Chattanooga Photo Series Are Available At Zarzour's During Mainx24 On Saturday

All four books in the Chattanooga Photo Series of old Chattanooga pictures will be available at Zarzour's Restaurant on the Southside during the Mainx24 festival on Saturday. Shannon Fuller will have the grill open along with chili and chili tater tots. The series includes Chattanooga in Old Photos, The Remarkable Stokes Collection, Railroads in and Around Chattanooga and ... (click for more)

Police Blotter: Homeless Man Helps Himself To Residence Inn Shower; Father Uses Daughter's Shower, Then Is Evicted As He Tries To Snooze On Couch

At the Residence Inn on Center Street, the housekeeping manager said an unknown male (believed to be homeless) locked himself in a room that had been assigned to be cleaned and took a shower. She confronted the man as he exited the room and she said he became hostile by cursing until another male co-worker stepped in between them. She said as she was calling the police the man ran ... (click for more)

Opinion

A Better Plan Is Needed For Quarry Golf Course At Mountain Creek

With regard to the ongoing saga of the old Quarry golf course and its proposed development, I reject the proposed plan endorsed by the North Chickamauga Creek Conservancy (Chattanoogan - Breaking News 11/30/2019) and believe a better outcome can be achieved. There is a middle ground that involves all R-1 construction including preserving the tree, greenspace, streams and ponds. ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Last Girl Standing

It’s about 90 miles from Chattanooga to Bell Buckle, Tn. Get on I-24 and go west, as you would towards Nashville, and you’ll see the sign. In mid-October about six dozen competitors turned off at the Bell Buckle exit to find their way to Gary Cantrell’s house. It is there that the Big Dog’s Backyard Ultra is held every fall under the watchful eye of ‘Big’ himself, who is better ... (click for more)

Sports

Vols' Nigel Warrior Named PFF All-American Honorable Mention

Tennessee senior defensive back Nigel Warrior was named a PFF College All-America Honorable Mention earlier this week. The Georgia native has been the leader of the Vols' secondary this year and has been one of the major reasons for UT's impressive turnaround on defense during the second half of the season. Warrior is tied for the SEC lead with four interceptions (14th ... (click for more)

UTC's Tiano Named SoCon Offensive Player Of The Month

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga senior quarterback Nick Tiano is the Southern Conference Offensive Player of the Month for November, the league office announced today. He is the first Moc to earn monthly recognition from the SoCon since Derrick Craine in October of 2015. Tiano helped the Mocs to a 2-2 mark in November, wrapping up a 6-6 campaign and a third place showing ... (click for more)