By Tamas Mondovics and Meg Dickens
An incident that occurred earlier this month at the Johnson County Courthouse has stirred the community prompting many to want to know more and others to form and voice their personal views to any hearing ear.
The incident in question revolves around the courthouse itself. Sheriff Candidate Mike Reece submitted an ad to The Tomahawk discussing security measures at the courthouse using the metal detector. The following day Reece allegedly had a disagreement with officials controlling the machines.
According to reports, the incident started after officials asked Reece to submit to scanning, which they said, he refused.
Although all parties agree there was physical contact between Reece and two officials, Reece states they were tapped or patted in a statement on his Facebook page.
Others who were present or have seen video of the incident say the officers were pushed in what they classify as assault, “per penal code 240 PC.”
For the sake of transparency and to stop rumors flying, Reece said, “these are false allegations meant to hurt his political campaign.”
“From this, rumors and lies spread like crazy,” Reece released in his statement to the public on his personal Facebook page. In part, Recce continued, “The officers did statements that were false, the Sheriff tried to get the D.A. to have me arrested, and it was told that I hit people, shoved them against walls, and on and on. When you run for office, you know it can get bad. It did last campaign too. People can be mean sometimes. The DA’s office was sent the video and officers’ statements and said I did nothing wrong.”
In a phone interview with The Tomahawk, Reece said that the video footage of the incident had been seen by acting Assistant District Attorney Generals at the State of Tennessee Leon Marshall and Dennis Brook. “Both said there will be no warrants issued as there was no basis for it,” Reece said.
In reply to Reece’s statement, Norman Miller, who was not working the machine that day, reported he was hit with enough force to “cause you to lurch forward into a machine” and aggravate his existing back condition.
“I said, “Mike, just go through the scanner,” Miller shared his side of the story on his Facebook page. “I then turned my back to him, continuing my conversation with someone else. He states he just patted me on the back. That is a lie, a pat does not cause you to lurch forward into a machine. Officer Poe told Reece not to be hitting me. In return, Reece poked him in the chest, got on
the elevator, and went upstairs.”
In his interview with The Tomahawk, Miller added, “I won’t be pursuing this incident; I just wanted to reply back to Mike because I don’t like to be called a liar.”
To read the complete statements of both parties involved, please visit their Facebook page.