Man sentenced for child abuse and other news from areas around Chattanooga

Man sentenced for child abuse and other news from areas around Chattanooga

January 9th, 2014 by Staff Reports and Associated Press in Local Regional News

Ricky Dean Smith

Ricky Dean Smith

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Man sentenced for child abuse

BRADLEY COUNTY, Tenn. - A Bradley County man was sentenced Wednesday to 15 years in prison after pleading "no contest" to a charge of aggravated child abuse.

Ricky Dean Smith, 23, was sentenced by Bradley County Criminal Court Judge Carroll Ross.

Smith was arrested by detectives on Jan. 4, 2013, the day that a 5-week-old child was admitted to T.C. Thompson Children's Hospital in Chattanooga with skull fractures and bleeding on the brain, a news release from the Bradley County Sheriff's Office stated.

The release said the investigation showed Smith to be responsible for the child's injuries, and he was indicted by a Bradley County grand jury.

Smith has been in the county jail under a judge's order of no bond.

The child was released from the hospital after treatment.

Driver killed in Calhoun crash

CALHOUN, Ga. - A Calhoun Police Department officer on patrol Wednesday afternoon saw a high-speed car crash on U.S. Highway 41 North that resulted in a fatality, according to a news release.

About 2:30 p.m. the officer saw a red Toyota Corolla traveling fast in the center turn lane of U.S. Highway 41 North. As the officer was turning around, he saw the Corolla strike a white SUV as it was turning from Maudlin Road onto U.S. Highway 41.

The Corolla's driver was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the SUV was taken to Gordon Hospital for treatment of injuries that were not life-threatening, police said.

The victim's name is being withheld pending notification of relatives.

Frozen sprinklers close elementary

MONTEAGLE, Tenn. - Students at Monteagle Elementary School will return to their classrooms today after a frozen sprinkler system line burst inside the building Tuesday night.

The school's about 325 students received an additional day off Wednesday, but the rest of Marion County Schools were in session.

System Superintendent Mark Griffith said the incident caused minimal damage and that teachers used the day to make up work.

Democrats name executive director

ATLANTA - The Democratic Party of Georgia has named a new executive director.

In a statement Tuesday, officials said party Chairman Dubose Porter announced that Rebecca Bukant DeHart has been named as the party's executive director.

Party officials say DeHart has managed political campaigns ranging from local and statewide races to ballot initiatives. Party leaders say DeHart spent years working with the Georgia Trial Lawyers Association, and as the executive director of the Georgia Commission on Family Violence.

Porter said in a statement that DeHart "brings years of local, state and national political experience, a passion for her work and a real commitment to Democratic ideals" to the position.

DeHart was approved by the party's executive committee on Tuesday and will work with other party leaders to fill additional positions.