published Friday, April 8th, 2011

Chattanooga: Cop killing suspect booked into jail on murder charge

Jesse Mathews, suspect in the shooting death of Chattanooga police Sgt. Tim Chapin.
Jesse Mathews, suspect in the shooting death of Chattanooga police Sgt. Tim Chapin.

Jesse Mathews, the suspect in the shooting death of Chattanooga police Sgt. Tim Chapin, was booked into the Hamilton County Jail about 12:45 p.m. today.

He was charged with one count of felony murder, two counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of especially aggravated robbery, records show.

He has not yet seen a magistrate, so no bond has been set.

The path that led to the death of a Chattanooga police officer started in Colorado and traveled through Nashville and Asheville, N.C., before finally ending here, authorities say.

Mathews’ parents and sister have been charged with multiple federal felonies related to his fleeing custody in Colorado, traveling to Tennessee and acquiring firearms.

According to a federal affidavit released this morning, Jesse Mathews is accused of robbing a pawn shop in Colorado on Feb. 12, the day before he disappeared from the Department of Corrections halfway house in which he had been serving his sentence from a 2003 conviction for robbery.

Using money from the robbery, the affidavit says, he wired money to his sister Rachel Mathews so she could fly to Colorado to help him escape. The affidavit does not say where she was living at the time.

Once in Colorado, Rachel Mathews bought bus tickets for Jesse Mathews and his girlfriend — who is unnamed in the affidavit — so they could travel to Nashville. Rachel Mathews' boyfriend, James Poteete, picked the pair up at the Nashville bus station, the affidavit said. Jesse Mathews paid Poteete $1,000 to drive them to Asheville, N.C., to meet his parents, Kathleen and Ray Mathews.

Once in Asheville, Jesse Mathews told his parents that he was a fugitive and had robbed the Colorado pawn shop, the affidavit states.

At one point, the Colorado Department of Corrections called Kathleen Mathews, asking if she knew where her son was, but she said she didn’t.

On March 6, Jesse, Kathleen and Ray Mathews were seen by a witness as they moved into a Chattanooga motel, the affidavit said. The witness later became Jesse Mathews’ girlfriend, but she is not named in the documents.

On March 16, Kathleen and Ray Mathews moved into a house in Chattanooga, the affidavit said. Poteete told investigators with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that one of the items he moved into the house was a bulletproof vest.

On March 27, Jesse Mathews and his girlfriend attended the RK Gun Show at the National Guard Armory in Chattanooga, where he spoke with someone for about 30 minutes, the affidavit said.

He then called his parents and told his father to bring “the family collection” to the gun show, according to the affidavit. About an hour later, his father came to the girlfriend’s home, where he unloaded about 10 to 12 guns, some of which were among the firearms stolen in the Colorado robbery, officials said.

In a news conference this morning, U.S. Attorney Bill Killian detailed charges against the family and the sister’s boyfriend:

Kathleen Mathews, 57, is charged with being an accessory after the fact to a Hobbs Act robbery, possession of a firearm in relation to a crime of violence, misprision of a felony (concealing information about a felony), disposing of a firearm to a convicted felon and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Killian said she was convicted of manslaughter in Florida.

Ray Vance Mathews, 50, is charged with being an accessory after the fact to a Hobbs Act robbery, possession of a firearm in relation to a crime of violence, misprision of a felony and disposing of a firearm to a convicted felon

Rachel Mathews, 21, also is charged with being an accessory, possessing a firearm in relation to a crime of violence and misprision of a felony.

Poteete, 26, is charged with accessory after the fact, misprision of a felony and carrying a firearm in relation to a drug trafficking crime.

Killian said the charges come after an investigation by the FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the TBI, Chattanooga police and the Hamilton County Sheriff’s office.

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Wow! What awesome role models he had in his family! Explains why he is such a coward.

April 8, 2011 at 1:18 p.m.
outdoorguy said...

Seriously? Why take the chance? He should have been left to die on the street like officer Chapin.

April 8, 2011 at 1:20 p.m.
Ouzzy88 said...

Wow

April 8, 2011 at 1:23 p.m.
ibshame said...

So, did he miraculously recover from his medically induced coma or was that just a story put out to keep the public from knowing he was not seriously wounded?

April 8, 2011 at 1:26 p.m.
silenius940 said...

"Jesse Mathews and his girlfriend attended the RK Gun Show at the National Guard Armory in Chattanooga, where he spoke with someone for about 30 minutes"

I wonder what they talked about. "Yep, this here gun can kill a man better than that thar piece of machinery, hyuck hyuck." I bet the guy he talked to is now sporting the chattanooga police badge on his facebook profile pic, such irony.

April 8, 2011 at 1:28 p.m.
Walden said...

Looks like we could put 5 dirty scumbag rednecks away on this one. Godspeed Mr. Killian.

God Bless Sgt. Tim Chapin's family.

April 8, 2011 at 1:30 p.m.
GreenKepi said...

What a 'bunch' of scum!!!!

April 8, 2011 at 1:40 p.m.
GMills said...

I too am confused. I thought this guy was on the verge of death, and now, just a few days later, he is being booked. What is the DEAL?

April 8, 2011 at 1:45 p.m.

No he didnt deserve to die there with sgt chapin that scum bag needs to have it on his mind what horror and turmoil he has caused that family and this community i hope he thinks about it every second of everyday

April 8, 2011 at 1:47 p.m.
DoN2Much said...

ibshame i agree with you when reading this, wow i thought he was in a coma so how the hell do someone come out of a coma in a day? please tell me that is so because i never heard that before in my life of 37yrs... man that is sad and yes i hope they get whomever sold him those guns if he purchased any from the RK show because you would think they do major background checks at those shows, hell if that was the case i see how all these young kids are now getting AK47's and everything else to use around the city on a regular basis! wow!!!!!

April 8, 2011 at 1:48 p.m.
silenius940 said...

"Jesse Mathews and his girlfriend attended the RK Gun Show at the National Guard Armory in Chattanooga, where he spoke with someone for about 30 minutes"

I wonder what they talked about. "Yep, this here gun can kill a man better than that thar piece of machinery, hyuck hyuck." I bet the guy he talked to is now sporting the chattanooga police badge on his facebook profile pic, such irony.

April 8, 2011 at 2:01 p.m.
hambone said...

firefighter, Your assuming he feels any guilt.

I think not!

April 8, 2011 at 2:23 p.m.
BigD2250 said...

The only people who are required to do background checks are the licensed gun dealers. Any Joe can pay the fee to have a table at a gun show, and if he is not a licensed dealer, there is no background check required. Not saying that's right, just saying that's how it is.

April 8, 2011 at 2:31 p.m.
BigD2250 said...

And to Don2Much, Matthews was in a medically-induced coma, meaning the doctors intentionally put him in the coma. He had been in the coma for several days, not just one.

April 8, 2011 at 2:33 p.m.
Dyan0221 said...

He was in a medically induced coma. That means one that is brought on by medicine and can be ended at any time. And yes, he should have been treated, and no he should never get out of jail again!

April 8, 2011 at 2:35 p.m.

I'm still in shock over the murder of Sergeant Chapin. That Mathews punk took away a husband, father and well loved officer. Thank GOD they arrested the entire crew on federal charges. I pray for NO bonds and swift justice. Now onto whoever sold him the firearm.

April 8, 2011 at 2:37 p.m.
whatsnottaken said...

Those of you who think he needs to sit in ajail cell and think about think the rest of his life are confused. These people - all of them - don't have the ability to think. They are animals. Just kill the whole lot of them.

April 8, 2011 at 2:51 p.m.
pNc said...

Maybe he was never in a coma. Maybe that was reported so the angry cops would have a shot at him first. Maybe that's why no one was allowed to see him.

April 8, 2011 at 2:55 p.m.
DoN2Much said...

oh ok thanks for clearing that up i just heard he was in a coma that is why i was wondering how someone can come out of a coma in a day after they just said yesterday he was. ok so he never bought any guns from the gun show as well? if so why would they not have someone do a background check on that. i know anyone can get a license and set up a table but i wasnt sure if he purchased any weapons from there especially if he had a 30 minute convo with someone there. I guess they talked about swapping guns maybe lol

April 8, 2011 at 3 p.m.
prettygirl said...

I think he was frame! cut the man some slack!

April 8, 2011 at 3:04 p.m.
DoN2Much said...

i agree totally pNc and i do believe that could be possible as i have and/or had family on the force and to be honest these are things they do esp if you harm one of their own like that or ie.(run from the cops) when they catch you its on lol... which i wouldnt doubt esp if someone is running from them an they have all that gear on

April 8, 2011 at 3:04 p.m.
DoN2Much said...

prettygirl you are stupid, retarded, and dumb... they caught the dude red handed and he shot an officer in broad daylight!!! what part of that is framed? idiot!! sorry you needed that

April 8, 2011 at 3:12 p.m.
Salsa said...

At least maybe he won't be reproducing. From what I hear his plumbing was shot off.

April 8, 2011 at 3:13 p.m.
BigD2250 said...

OK, read this very carefully. When gun shows come to town, regular people have the opportunity to purchase a table in the gun show and sell whatever guns/supplies/accessories he or she has. IF the person selling the gun IS A LICENSED GUN DEALER, then they must conduct a background check on anyone who wants to buy one of their firearms. IF the person selling the gun is NOT a licensed dealer, then he or she is NOT required to conduct any type of background check when selling the gun.

April 8, 2011 at 3:13 p.m.
DoN2Much said...

ok BigD that was understood to begin with but if you read what i said, i asked did he buy from the place and if so why was it not a background check done on him before purchasing a weapon. not for him to sell any. and for prettygirl, sorry, your comment wasn't even worth my time reading, much less commenting on

April 8, 2011 at 3:28 p.m.
Dyan0221 said...

Yep, Prettygirl is pretty much an idiot.

April 8, 2011 at 3:30 p.m.
silenius940 said...

"Jesse Mathews and his girlfriend attended the RK Gun Show at the National Guard Armory in Chattanooga, where he spoke with someone for about 30 minutes" I wonder what they talked about. "Yep, this here gun can kill a man better than that thar piece of machinery, hyuck hyuck." I bet the guy he talked to is now sporting the chattanooga police badge on his facebook profile pic, such irony.

April 8, 2011 at 3:32 p.m.
tarheeljosh said...

I'm curious about the extent of his injuries. What are the two tubes coming out of the bottom of his head?

April 8, 2011 at 3:45 p.m.
silenius940 said...

I'm sure the cops really beat the crap out of him at some point.

April 8, 2011 at 4:06 p.m.
silenius940 said...

just sayin..

April 8, 2011 at 4:09 p.m.
dao1980 said...

Looks like drainage tubes from some sort of operation.

Kinda reminds me of the scene in the Princess Bride, when Cary Elwes wakes up in the pit of despair to being mended by Mel Smith.

I think Mel says something like, "we would like you to be in good health before we torture you", or something like that.

April 8, 2011 at 4:10 p.m.
NorthChatter said...

from the swelling to his face (lips) and what looks to be stiches along both side of his jaw line...he looks to have either taken a bullet or a beating to his lower jaw.

I have also heard, as someone had mentioned previously, that he no longer has full genitalia. All of which would make sense. Once the officers realized he was wearing a vest, the next two biggest targets are head and groin.

April 8, 2011 at 4:37 p.m.
5ftgiant said...

DoN, BigD is not saying he sold guns there. What BigD is stating is that it is legal for average citizens to sell their own guns at an event like this without having to run a background check on who they sell to. So in this case, although the article does not say he bought a gun, it would be possible for Jesse to go to a gun show and buy a weapon from one of these individuals without worrying about the background check. I'm not saying I'm for or against this law but I'm merely stating that it is legal to buy one without the background check.

There are some stipulations though when it comes to selling locally like this. For instance, you cannot not "knowingly" sell a firearm to a felon. This is pretty easy to avoid by doing these side-table deals. Also, you cannot sell a handgun to anyone anyone that does not reside in TN. This is easier to verify by asking to see ID but a lot of people at these shows don't bother.

April 8, 2011 at 4:44 p.m.
rcawood said...

I think while he is sitting in jail he should have to watch the video of the service of Srg. Tim Chapin. over and over again..I wish i was a cop right now working at the jail....just saying!!!

April 8, 2011 at 4:58 p.m.
prettygirl said...

dao1980 this man is a stalker with 10 cheap walmart computer he uses 5 for Chattanooga times posting and 5 to talk to lil kids he,s just a post away from that knock from the boys in blue and date line NBC, I NEVER seen someone have a orgasm from posting this man has hemorrhoids to the floor and post 24/7 he is the 1 man computer crips gang somebody please get that clown some help every since he lost his youth misiter job for let me just say the were not praying when someone enter the room, and the guy he lives with just put LAUREN AND HARDY ON THEIR MAILBOX this man has over 100 names he uses to post with SAD BUT TRUE, I DONT LIVE IN CHATTANOOGA IF I DID I WOULD PUT A STRAIGHT JACKET ON THAT FOOL A TAKE HIM AROURD THE BEND! LOOK BACK OVER A YEAR ON ANY STORY YOU WILL SEE DAO1980 EVERYDAY ALL DAY WOW WALMART NEEDS GREETERS TOO I DONT UNDERSTAND IT

April 8, 2011 at 5:44 p.m.
pNc said...

As powerful societies advance, they seem to have less and less respect for human life. That goes both for society at large and authority overseeing society. It's disturbing that as societies become more powerful and advanced the more they regress mentally, psychology, spiritually and emotionally.

The more they become desensitized to human pain and human suffering the less respect they have for life and humanity. They make lite of death. To them, all humanity becomes nothing more than collateral damage.

Like sewage flows from the top down, so does societies first start to errode.

April 8, 2011 at 6:38 p.m.
greenj76 said...

If guns are outlawed then only outlaws will have guns. I say make it a requirement to carry a weapon at all times. The gang memebers with the preadtor dreads would think twice about murder and rape if they knew the person they were about to rob had a .45 think about it.

April 8, 2011 at 6:57 p.m.
pNc said...

greenj76 said... I say make it a requirement to carry a weapon at all times. The gang memebers with the preadtor dreads would think twice about murder and rape if they knew the person they were about to rob had a .45 think about it.

What about the clean cut Tim McVeigh types and Matthews who aren't "gang bangers" and who don't sport "preadtor?" dreads? What about the law abiding soccer moms who kill in fits of road rage. Or the wealthy Florida mom who murdered her two children for mouthing off? Or the NY Cop who murdered his soon to be ex-wife for filing for a divorce and dumps her body in some remote area. Then there's the Virginia tech shooter who went on a shooting spree. The Columbine Colorado teens who shot and killed several students and a teacher. None of those individuals belonged to a gang or sported dreads. All but one, Matthews, would have been able to legally obtain a gun. Who gets to decide which individual is most or less likely to kill? What criteria be put in place to decide? Will anyone and everyone with dreads or a tatoo be denied a gun?

It's juvenile and naive to believe that if an individual is legally armed society will be made more safe. Studies show just the opposite. Most armed individuals are killed with their own weapons. More family members are killed in murder suicides in homes with legal weapons. If the OK is given where everyone can legally carry a gun, more legally gun owners will become quick to pull out their guns over such someone taking their parking space at Wal-Mart.

April 8, 2011 at 7:35 p.m.
Sailorman said...

pNc

Another sadly misinformed individual. The tripe you posted is the same old propaganda and baseless opinions always used by the Brady Bunch and their antigun syncophants. Rather than wasting time, I'll simply suggest you look back at some of Clay's numerous antigun cartoons and read the responses.

April 8, 2011 at 8:31 p.m.
Oz said...

The Chattanoogan is reporting Matthews has injuries to his jaw and penis. http://www.chattanoogan.com/articles/article_198551.asp

Hopefully he lost his penis. That would be worse than dying.

April 8, 2011 at 8:56 p.m.
Haiku said...

I once watched as flag draped coffins were being unloaded at Dover Delaware Air Force Base of service men and women who'd been killed in the war zone. I tried as hard as I could to hate. I honestly did. I felt something must be wrong with me. That I must be abnormal in a mist of normals. After all, most seem to find it quite easy to hate even in the most calm of times. Why couldn't I? Instead of hate, I found myself weeping and praying for both those inside those flag draped coffins and their families as well as those we'd been told were the enemy and their families. Only then when I gave up on trying so hard to hate did I find calm and peace. And it was at that moment that I knew I was right with God.

We aren't required to forgive and forget. However, hopefully there's a lesson here for us all to learn, live and abide by. That we remember life is both fleeting and precious, Fragile yet strong. Life is sacred. And hopefully, at some point, we'll come to learn to respect life, all life, even that of our enemy. Even the life of those who would do us harm.

Watching those flag draped coffins @ Dover Delaware Air Force Base, I learned a valuable lesson. Such intense hatred on serves to dishonor the very one we wish to honor.

At some point, hopefully, Chattanooga will move beyond their present grief and join in celebrating the fact that all life is sacred.

Picture from The Memory Hole/Dover Delware:

http://wayback.archive-it.org/924/20080312231902im_/http://thememoryhole.org/war/coffin_photos/dover/casket08.jpg

April 8, 2011 at 9:55 p.m.
chast72 said...

It dont matter how or what happened. The sad thing is there are children and a wife left without a father and husband. This man and his family should be hung like in the good ole days. Or better yet tortured like they have tortured Tim's family!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

April 8, 2011 at 11:14 p.m.
chast72 said...

I feel so bad for Tim's family, his kids, wife and also his friends. I know it's hard for us not to want to kill or have hatred for this man! I think he should be put in prison for the rest of his life, and as far as his family goes.... well they all should be right there with him. They KNEW of his wrong doings and didn't report any of it! And helped aid him to do what he did... But.... and i say this with no disrespect for all of you who have your own opinions. But.. I truly believe only God has the right to determine whether you live or die, and WHEN. Yes this is such a tragic story, and I wish I could take Tim's family and friend's pain away.. I am not saying he don't deserve it!! But, it does say in the bible, thou shalt not kill. I really just don't know how to feel about the DEATH PENALTY, i really don't?? I've always been 50/50 on that subject and really don't understand that if God had put that in bible, would he approve of us killing even the worst of criminals?? Anybody wanna comment or help me understand this??

April 8, 2011 at 11:23 p.m.
chioK_V said...

chast72 said... It dont matter how or what happened. The sad thing is there are children and a wife left without a father and husband. This man and his family should be hung like in the good ole days. Or better yet tortured like they have tortured Tim's family!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


You're speaking from a both an emotional and personal perspective, and that's understandable. However, our system of justice isn't suppose to operate from such a level. Otherwise, we're no better than the bad guys.

Families are sometimes left without one or even both parents in several circumstances, though not necessarily the same. The fact that the children are left without a father and wife without a spouse can't be used as an excuse for a civilized society to suddenly turn barbaric. That's why we have a justice system that claims to be one of the best in the world. That's why, even with this tragedy, we must allow due process to take place.

We can't claim ourselves as a Christian nation with values when all things are going right, then suddenly turn a full 360 and become monsters and barbarians.

April 8, 2011 at 11:31 p.m.
SavartiTN said...

Have any of you ever been to one of these gun shows? I went a few years ago and was shocked by the strange people standing in the back of the room that were allowed to sell a gun for cash...no id...no background checks...just cold hard cash. But, hey, we live in a time where cash is KING! And that is ALL that matters!

April 9, 2011 at 12:38 a.m.
JScruggs0601 said...

Well I think it's interesting that very few people are looking at the major problem here. The man was able to buy 10 to 12 guns at a gun show even though he was a felon. There have been over 2,400 fatal shooting incidents in America since the tragic shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona in January. Am I the only one that thinks this is insane and unacceptable?

Was the man and his family in the wrong? Yes. Should they be persecuted? Of course. But to ignore the fact that our laws are the ones that allowed something like this to happen, is wrong. Americans are so quick to holler out that they know their rights and that they should be able to own a gun, that they don't take into account the message their sending out across the states.

We should look at ourselves and our rhetoric before we decide to call for the noose for a man and his family.

April 9, 2011 at 3:12 a.m.
Haiku said...

My faith teaches that grief, sadness, anger, hatred and even thoughts of revenge are normal emotions in the face of such a tragedy. It's when we cross that line outside the due process of our judicial system, and commit harm to someone in our loved one's memory that we too commit an even greater wrong.

My faith teaches that when we hold on to our anger, hatred and seek revenge by physcially acting out on our emotions, that we actually keep trapped the spirit of our loved one in some neither world, where they aren't able to moved on. A sort of trapped in purgatory where we're causing our loved one to continue to suffer by committing physical acts of harm against the one who caused our suffering. Rather than helping our loved one we're actually hurting them.

In essence, we become a part of the very thing that we despise. That took our loved one and friend away. We become the mirror image of the cause of our pain, suffering and grief.

The lesson here is to hold on to your grief, anger if it gives you comfort, but only to a certain point. Never NEVER! Act out physically in an act of revenge in memory of a loved one. You harm more the one you wish to honor. The one you're grieving over.

April 9, 2011 at 8:56 a.m.
silenius940 said...

"Jesse Mathews and his girlfriend attended the RK Gun Show at the National Guard Armory in Chattanooga, where he spoke with someone for about 30 minutes" I wonder what they talked about. "Yep, this here gun can kill a man better than that thar piece of machinery, hyuck hyuck." I bet the guy he talked to is now sporting the chattanooga police badge on his facebook profile pic, such irony.

April 9, 2011 at 10:55 a.m.
5ftgiant said...

silenius940,

Your comments weren't funny the first three times you posted it. Please do us all a favor and just stop. You are only showing your own foolishness and ignorance.

April 25, 2011 at 8:17 a.m.
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