published Saturday, March 16th, 2013

Man sentenced in child sex case and other news from areas around Chattanooga

Man sentenced in child sex case

DALTON, Ga. — A Dalton man has been sentenced to life in prison after being found guilty of sexually abusing three children.

Monte Gale Salyer, a former Dalton State College professor, appeared in Whitfield County Superior Court on Thursday. He was convicted on three counts of child molestation, two counts of aggravated child molestation and one count of statutory rape.

County sheriff's investigators arrested Salyer after a Tennessee girl and a Florida woman said he befriended their families at church and molested them during their early childhoods, newspaper archives show.

District Attorney Bert Poston said Salyer, 59, would be eligible for parole after 30 years.

His attorney, Jim Meaney, said he is unsure whether Salyer will file an appeal.


Whitfield names schools chief

The Whitfield County Board of Education on Thursday voted to hire Judy Gilreath to replace outgoing Superintendent Danny Hayes.

Gilreath has been the system's assistant superintendent for student support, the Daily Citizen reported.

Her contract as superintendent, which runs through June 30, 2014, includes a salary of $140,000 and $600 a month for travel costs.


Voters approve liquor by drink

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. — Voters in Pigeon Forge again have approved liquor by the drink. This time, the margin was 154 votes.

The Mountain Press reported Ken Maples, who led the pro-liquor initiative, said the election Thursday validated the choice voters initially made Nov. 6.

Results of that referendum were thrown out by a court over confusion about who was allowed to vote. The question was on a crowded general election ballot, headed by the presidential race.

Jess Davis, co-chairman of Concerned Churches and Citizens of Pigeon Forge, said his group was disappointed in the outcome and might contest the results.

Davis said his group will have an attorney examine property transfers that allowed votes by people who don't live in the city but own land there. Owners of at least 1 percent of a property can vote.

"He says that if they're not transfers for the purpose of business and not voting, they're not legitimate," Davis said. "Whether we challenge or not, it's not right."

The Sevier County Election Commission meets March 21 to certify the vote.


Dog exposed to rabid raccoon

ELLIJAY, Ga. — A raccoon attacked earlier this month in Gilmer County, Ga., has tested positive for rabies and a dog exposed to it quarantined.

The female pit bull terrier attacked the raccoon on March 2, according to a news release. There was no human exposure, officials said.

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