Associated Press

tbi

BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) — A Tennessee judge has ruled that a lawsuit by local prosecutors against prescription opioid producers can proceed.

According to a news release from the law firm representing the prosecutors, Sullivan County Chancellor E.G. Moody ruled this week against multiple motions to dismiss by the drug companies.

In the complaint, district attorneys general for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd districts target Purdue Pharma L.P. and its related companies, Mallinckrodt PLC, Endo Pharmaceuticals and three convicted opioid dealers.

ICOM

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a 20-year-old man has pleaded guilty to vandalizing a Tennessee Islamic Center with profane references to Allah in spray-paint and strips of bacon left at an entrance last July.

Charles Dwight Stout III was initially charged with civil rights violations.

U.S. Attorney Donald Cochran said Stout now faces a year of supervision and must pay for the damage after pleading guilty to conspiracy and to causing damage to religious property because of its religious character.

doj.gov

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (AP) — The nation's top law enforcement officer says he isn't shedding tears over a raid at a Tennessee meat processing plant where 97 workers were arrested by immigration officials.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions was speaking about employers, saying they shouldn't be able to gain advantage by hiring workers who are in the country illegally. The comments were made at a law enforcement training conference in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, which is not far from the plant that was raided April 5.

MNPD

  NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee authorities say a former detective, who was celebrated for being the first Kurdish person to join Nashville's police force, has been charged with 57 counts of official misconduct.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said the charges relate to allegations against 29-year-old Jiyayi Suleyman that have to do with misuse of government records.

Suleyman is accused of looking up information in the confidential police criminal justice data system on his days off.

letsmovenashville.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Nashville voters have overwhelmingly rejected a plan to pay for a $5.4 billion mass transit system that called for a new light rail system, expanded bus routes and the building of a downtown underground tunnel.

Unofficial vote totals show the measure being defeated Tuesday by nearly 30 percentage points.

Supporters thought the plan would ease Nashville's traffic snarls and give people more options traveling around Music City. But a mix of both conservatives and liberals came out against the idea.

letsmovenashville.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Nashville voters head to the polls Tuesday to determine the fate of a proposal to build an extensive transit system.

Under the proposal, four taxes, including a 1-cent sales tax increase, would be raised to pay for the $5.4 billion transit system.

The plan includes more than 25 miles (40 kilometers) of light rail on five corridors, additional bus service and an underground tunnel downtown. It calls for the project's completion by 2032.

Proponents say the plan would help relieve traffic congestion. Critics say it relies too much on light rail.

wcs.edu

FRANKLIN, Tenn. (AP) — A judge has dismissed the charges against a Tennessee schools superintendent who was accused of assault during a student's reported psychological emergency.

The Tennessean reports that the judge ruled Wednesday that neither the student nor her mother faced the threat of imminent bodily harm from Williamson County Director of Schools Mike Looney.

  NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Without knowing who he was or what he might do, police briefly had Travis Reinking in their sights days before the deadly assault on a Waffle House restaurant.

Alerted to the theft of a BMW from a car dealer last week, officers decided against a risky police chase, knowing the car had a GPS device and could soon be located.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The man who snatched an AR-15 rifle from a gunman at a busy Tennessee restaurant says his was a "selfish" act of self-preservation and he doesn't consider himself a hero. Never mind that he is being credited with saving several other lives.

"When I grabbed the barrel of the weapon it was hot, but I didn't care. It was life or death," said James Shaw Jr., a 29-year-old Nashville resident who found himself wrestling with the suspect after four people had already been fatally shot at a Waffle House bustling with patrons early Sunday in Nashville.

capitol.tn.gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee House passed a $37.5 billion budget, but only after arguments over whether to take money away from the city of Memphis as punishment for removing Confederate Statues last year.

Gov. Bill Haslam asked for $211.8 million more for K-12 education, including $55.1 million for teacher pay raises. He added $30 million to fight opioid abuse and another $30 million for school safety following the shootings in Florida in February that killed 17 people. The governor also included $99.1 million for higher education.

SPLC.org

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A resolution denouncing neo-Nazis and white nationalists has died in the Tennessee legislature for the second time in recent weeks.

The Tennessean reports House Republican Caucus Chair Rep. Ryan Williams, R-Cookeville, requested Monday that the resolution be withdrawn from consideration by the Delayed Bills Committee.

Dick DeMarsico, World Telegram / United States Library of Congress

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — With thoughts on the past and eyes to the future, thousands marched and sang civil rights songs Wednesday to honor the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the "apostle of nonviolence" silenced by an assassin 50 years ago.

At events ranging from a jubilant concert to a solemn wreath-laying, admirers across the country took time to both reflect on King's legacy and discuss how his example can apply to racial and economic divides still plaguing society.

tn.gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican House Speaker Beth Harwell wants a lawmaker's resignation after three women have accused him in a report of sexual misconduct as their high school basketball coach decades ago.

Hours before WSMV-TV's report Tuesday, Harwell spokeswoman Kara Owen told the station Harwell thinks Republican Rep. David Byrd should resign. In the report, two women allege Byrd inappropriately touched them. The third said Byrd tried to.

MNPD

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A black man accused of fatally shooting a white woman and wounding six other people at a Tennessee church in September has pleaded not guilty through his attorney to charges in a 43-count indictment, including first-degree murder, attempted murder and felony civil rights intimidation.

On Wednesday, attorney Jennifer Thompson entered the plea on behalf of 26-year-old Emanuel Kidega Samson during the arraignment on charges in the Burnette Chapel Church of Christ shooting in Nashville. Samson was not in court Wednesday and has not yet appeared in court.

UNC-Asheville

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) — Middle Tennessee has a new basketball coach in Nick McDevitt, who led UNC Asheville to the Big South regular-season title the last two years.

He replaces Kermit Davis, who left to coach Mississippi after going 332-188 in 16 seasons. McDevitt will be introduced at a news conference on Tuesday.

capitol.tn.gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's Republican House and Senate leaders say the state isn't paying lawmakers or staffers to attend a California legislative summit.

In a letter Thursday, Senate Speaker Randy McNally and House Speaker Beth Harwell said the state won't cover the National Conference of State Legislatures conference trip in Los Angeles because of California's ban on state-paid trips to Tennessee.

attorneygeneral.tn.gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee Supreme Court has denied the state attorney general's request to move up eight execution dates before June 1.

Attorney General Herbert Slatery filed the requests Feb. 5 and cited "ongoing difficulty" getting lethal injection drugs.

The court on Thursday did set execution dates for two of the inmates, Oct. 11 for Edmund Zagorski, who was convicted of two murders, and Dec. 6 for David Earl Miller, who was convicted of murdering a mentally disabled woman.

Tennessee hasn't put anyone to death since 2009.

tn.gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Haslam is joining several other Tennessee officials voicing concerns over President Donald Trump's tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.

The Republican governor told reporters Tuesday he's concerned about additional costs to manufacturers, particularly the state's car industry. He said that a trade war wouldn't be good for Tennessee, a manufacturing state.

Swedish appliance maker Electrolux has put on hold a $250 million Tennessee plant expansion, citing the tariff announcement. Other companies are showing similar caution.

City of Nashville

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Nashville Mayor David Briley says his city can begin to acknowledge, atone and seek reconciliation for slavery by replacing an unused minor league baseball stadium with a park commemorating a Civil War fort built by slaves.

Briley announced Tuesday he'll seek $1 million in city money to demolish Greer Stadium near Fort Negley. Developers dropped housing and entertainment complex plans for the site after archaeologists found human remains are likely still buried there, possibly of slaves who built the fort.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's education commissioner says the state has more than twice the national average of cases involving students bringing firearms to school.

Candice McQueen says Tennessee had 7.5 incidents per 100,000 students in the 2015-16 school year; the national average is 3.1 incidents.

meganbarry.com

NASHIVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Before her sudden fall, former Nashville Mayor Megan Barry was a progressive, pro-business rising star among Tennessee's struggling Democrats in a firmly red state.

She officiated the city's first gay marriage before being elected in 2015. She pushed for tremendous growth, helping shape an ever-changing skyline of construction cranes and new high-rises.

electrolux.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Electrolux says its plans for a $250 million plant expansion in Tennessee are on hold, and the Swedish appliance maker is citing President Donald Trump's tariff announcement as the reason.

Electrolux's investment plans included modernizing and adding 400,000 square feet to the plant in Springfield. Construction was slated to begin later this year.

senate.gov

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker has decided anew not to seek re-election this fall, his chief of staff said Tuesday, after spending recent weeks reconsidering his initial decision to leave the chamber where he's served since 2007.

Corker "has been encouraged by people across Tennessee and in the Senate to reconsider" his decision to retire, the senator's chief of staff, Todd Womack, said in a statement. After studying Corker's prospects, "a clear path for re-election was laid out," Womack said.

meganbarry.com

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Court documents say the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has found a nude and partially nude photo of a woman the agency believes were taken with the phone of Nashville Mayor Megan Barry's former bodyguard.

The agency believes the evidence shows that Barry engaged in an affair with former Sgt. Rob Forrest while he was on duty. The Tennessean first reported the documents.

The photos are referenced in an affidavit seeking possession of Barry's cellphone. The phone was obtained and then turned over to a third party Thursday for analysis.

attorneygeneral.tn.gov

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee's attorney general wants the state Supreme Court to set eight execution dates before June 1, saying it's uncertain whether officials can get the lethal injection chemicals after that.

Attorney General Herbert Slatery's court filing Thursday says juries delivered death sentences decades ago, and each man has exhausted the three-tier appeals process.

The state's last execution was in 2009.

Slatery cited "ongoing difficulty" getting lethal injection drugs.

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