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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Masquerade Theater Productions Shine

The Masquerade Players at work. (Brent Hinson photo).

By Brent Hinson

Union City, Tenn.-Masquerade Theater, under the direction of Melanie Hollis, presents four more showings of their latest production, "How To Eat Like a Child (and other lessons on how NOT to be a grown-up) at the Capitol Theater in downtown Union City.

The Red Cast performs on Thursday and Saturday while the Blue Cast performs on Friday and Sunday.  Showtimes are 7 pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2pm on Sunday.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and can be purchase at the box office before each show.

All concession proceeds will be donated to the Union City and Obion County Schools Backpack Program.  This program provides food for students each weekend during the school year.  You can also bring a food donation and receive a free concession item

Noon On Square Set Friday

Paris, Tenn.-The final Noon on the Square for this year will be held in downtown Paris Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. with entertainment from John Austin McDaniel. Cash's Wood-Fired Pizza will be served by Paris Quota to benefit their projects. Noon on the Square is sponsored every Friday in September by Commercial Bank & Trust.

Tenn-Ken Food, Wine Event Is Thursday

Union City, Tenn.-The annual Taste of Tenn-Ken Food and Wine Event will be held from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday at Kiwanis Park in Union City. Advance tickets $25 and $30 at the door. Tickets are available at Main Street Union City, 885-8330.

Restaurants from all over Northwest Tennessee and Southwest Kentucky will provide goodies to sample, along with wine, and Barry Patrick will entertain. Proceeds go to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Northwest Tennessee, Masquerade Theater and Main Street Union City.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be held at the Obion County Fairgrounds.

Blessing Of The Animals Set

Springville, Tenn.-Antioch United Methodist Church will hold a Blessing Of The Animals at 1 p.m. Sunday at the church at 3116 West Antioch Rd., Springville. The public is invited to attend. For more information, call 644-1814 at the church.

UC Police Investigate Burglaries

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Union City, Tenn.-Union City Police are investigating an aggravated burglary in which $6,886 worth of guns and electronics items were stolen from a home on Lake Drive. In two other incidents, guns were stolen from other residences.

A resident at 3008 Lake Drive reported he was gone overnight and when he returned, he found someone had entered his home and stole several guns, including a Browning rifle, 22 caliber Ruger, Stevens Arms shotgun, 9 mm and 38 special handguns, boxes of ammunition, several gun accessories, two 24 inch TV sets, an Xbox and accessories, Beats headphones, games and accessories, Apple sports watch, video camera and several Ray Ban sunglasses. 

According to the report, the garage door was left open and entry was gained by breaking the window pane and unlocking the door.

In the other reports, a Glock 9 mm gun was reported stolen from a home at 1003 S. Second St., and an aggravated burglary was reported at 202 Todd St. The residents said they took a walk from 10 p.m. Tuesday until around 2 a.m. this morning and when they returned, someone had broken into a padlocked gun cabinet and a locked gun box and stole their 9 mm pistol. 

Tickets On Sale For Salad Spectacular

Paris, Tenn.--Tickets are available for the Salad Spectacular sponsored by the Friends of the W.G. Rhea Library.  The lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday, October 7, at Ketchum Hall at the Grace Episcopal Church, 103 South Poplar Street.

Tickets are $10 at the library, library book store, Maggie's Boutique, Commercial Bank (downtown) and Security Bank (downtown).

The salad includes choice of four salads (chicken salad, grape salad, loaded baked potato salad, Italian pasta/veggie salad, honeymoon coleslaw and broccoli salad), bread or crackers, drink and a cookie.

There also will be a drawing for four new cookbooks, as well as used cookbooks for sale.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


Suspect Is Captured

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-The man being sought on an aggravated domestic assault charge has been apprehended and is in the Henry County Jail.

Demetrias Hilliard, age 18, of 292 Jim Hunt Rd., was arrested this afternoon by Henry County Sheriff's deputies. According to Sheriff Monte Belew, Hilliard finally came out of the woods and was going back to his house, which is in an outbuilding at that address, when family members detained him for law enforcement.

Hilliard had been sought following a domestic assault earlier this morning in which he allegedly wounded his wife in the hand with a knife.

A search of the area by both deputies and their K9s and a THP helicopter was unsuccessful.

Bond for Hilliard has been set at $10,000.

Warrant Issued For Cottage Grove Man

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-A warrant has been issued by the Henry County Sheriff's Office for a Cottage Grove man for aggravated domestic assault after a search for him around Jim Hunt Rd. this morning by K9s and a THP helicopter proved unsuccessful.

The sheriff's office is seeking Demetrias Hilliard, age 18, of 292 Jim Hunt Rd., for harming his wife during a physical altercation with her this morning.

The incident began when a 911 call was received from Hilliard, who said he had been stabbed and left in the woods around the 292 Jim Hunt Rd. address. Around the same time, another call came in saying that Hilliard's wife, Sabrina Hobbs, age 22, was being taken to the emergency room for treatment following an assault by Hilliard.

According to the sheriff's office, Hilliard and Hobbs live in an outbuilding at that address.

Deputies and investigators and EMS responded to both the emergency room and the address on Jim Hunt Rd. They determined that the couple had engaged in an argument that became physical and Hilliard cut his wife on her hand with a knife.

A search was conducted by Cpl. Wayne Fuqua and his bloodhound Cisco, Cpl Terry Williams and his K9 Droid, the THP helicopter piloted by Lee Russell in that area. The search ended around noon without finding Hilliard.

It also was determined during the investigation that Hilliard had not been seriously wounded in the altercation.

Etheridge Honored On His Retirement

Etheridge, left, is given the Loyal Patriots' Award by Kenneth Humphreys. (McFarlin photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-At today’s retirement reception for BPU General Manager John Etheridge, Etheridge was honored with Henry County’s Loyal Patriot Award, as well as plaques and gifts from the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Tennessee Municipal Electric Power Association.

County Commission Vice Chair Kenneth Humphreys presented the Loyal Patriot Award to Etheridge and spoke of Etheridge’s “love for his community, his Lord and his family. I really appreciate you.” The county also declared today “John Etheridge Day”.

Etheridge is retiring after 35 years with the BPU, nine of which has been as General Manager.

Laura Campbell of the TVA said Etheridge’s retirement “is bittersweet. He has always been insightful and calm and we’ll miss him. He’s been a good partner with us.”

TVA officials also presented Etheridge with bag chairs, a flashlight and state river and trail guides.

Mike Vincent of the Tennessee Municipal Electric Power Association presented an appreciation award to Etheridge in recognition of his two terms on that board.

A large crowd of well-wishers, including city and county officials, were on hand at today’s reception.


BPU Says Farewell To Etheridge

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.—At his last meeting as General Manager of the Board of Public Utilities (BPU), John Etheridge said he knows he is leaving the BPU in good hands with incoming General Manager Terry Wimberley and that he will miss the people he worked with during his years of service for the utility.

Etheridge is retiring after 35 years with BPU, 10 of which have been spent as General Manager. “I appreciated the support of the board and the engagement of the board. I appreciate the staff and all the employees who have helped to accomplish what has been accomplished.”

Etheridge said, “I know Terry and his staff will do well in the future endeavors for the BPU. The easiest job I’ve had as General Manager was mentoring Terry. He was eager to learn and brought skills with him. I know he’ll make good decisions.”

Board Chairman David Flowers congratulated Etheridge on his retirement and for all he has done for the BPU.

In other business during the short meeting:

--The board approved the audit, which had no findings. Etheridge said, “We had a good, clean audit, like we always have and they do dig deep. They spent a week with us. We have a healthy net income and cash flowing. It’s a good audit, through efforts of our financial and operations people.”

Cost of the audit by Alexander Thompson Arnold was $23,895, with some $3,000 additional for auditing the State Revolving Loan Fund.

The BPU Roundup program also received a good audit, he said.

--The board approved Butch Powers to the investment committee to replace Etheridge. Other members are Flowers and Wimberley.

--The board also appointed Wimberley to the Henry County Alliance executive committee to place Etheridge.

--Etheridge reported there are now 789 accounts on pre-pay. “The program continues to be popular and effective and it’s a win-win for everybody,” Etheridge said.


Stowe Recuses His Office From Dempsey Case


By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Huntingdon, Tenn.-District Attorney General Matthew Stowe has announced that he will recuse himself and his office from the ongoing prosecution of Attorney Ben Dempsey.

As WENK/WTPR previously reported, Dempsey was indicted earlier this month by the Carroll County Grand Jury on a charge of sexual battery. Dempsey, age 67, has law offices in both Huntingdon and Paris.

Stowe said in his press release, “Our office maintains the highest standards of integrity and recuses whenever we might appear to be too closely tied to the defendant in a favorable or unfavorable way, so that the public can be assured of a fair and unbiased trial. Our attorneys have worked closely with Mr. Dempsey over the years and have always enjoyed a respectful and cordial working relationship.”


Having Fun At "Taking It To The Streets"

Paris, Tenn.-A huge crowd of kids and parents was on hand at the Eiffel Tower Park Monday evening for the first "Taking It To The Streets" of the school year. Hosted by the Paris Special Schools District, the "Taking It To The Streets" events are intended to build positive connections between the schools, students, parents and community. Monday's event was organized by Rhea Teacher Lacy Wade with a fiesta theme, with Spanish/English trivia and games. Parent Hayley Garcia read books in Spanish. Elementary schools in the district now offer language classes in the curriculum. 

In photo, it was time to serve hot dogs for Sarah Luffman, Lynda Searcy, Sylvia Humphreys, Kim Denman and Barbara Waters. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Reception For Randy Gean Is Friday

Paris, Tenn.-A reception will be held for retiring Henry County Sheriff Chief Deputy Randy Gean from 3-5 p.m. Friday at the Henry County Fairgrounds. The sheriff's office will provide refreshments and the public is encouraged to attend to wish Gean well on his pending retirement. 

The reception will be held in the Enoch Building.

Henry County Schools Community Meeting Set

Paris, Tenn.-The Henry County Schools board of education is hosting a community meeting Thursday evening to discuss the proposed Henry County High School building project. The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at the high school, in the testing center. The public is encouraged to attend.

Burglars Steal Items From Home

Union City, Tenn.-Thieves stole several items from an unoccupied home on East Gibbs Street in Union City in the past few weeks.

According to the police report, relatives of a deceased woman were mowing the yard at her home when they noticed the back window was busted out and the air conditioner missing. Further investigation found that the washer and dryer and World War II figurines were also missing.

Police said whoever did it, backed their vehicle up to the back fence and broke the chain link fence down, too.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Carter, Archer Honored At 911 Meeting


Bettye Carter receives a proclamation from Board Chairman John Etheridge. (McFarlin photos).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Paris, Tenn.-It was an evening for accolades at the Henry County 911 Board meeting Monday night, with both long-time Board Member Bettye Carter being honored for her service to the board and 911 Director Mark Archer honored for his service to the state 911 board.

Board Chairman John Etheridge presented Carter with a proclamation noting the board’s “appreciation and gratitude” to her for her service. “We benefited immeasurably from Bettye being a member,” Etheridge said. Carter retired from the board

Carter said to the board, “You’re in wonderful hands with Mark as Director. I know it’s a thankless job a lot of times and Mark does a good job, keeping you ahead of the curve with the state and local rules and regs. I wish you all the best.”

State 911 Director Curtis Sutton presented a plaque to Archer, honoring him for his service to the state board, which he said was a benefit to the state. Archer was on the state board from 2010 to 2014.

IT Manager Chad Howard reported on new additions to the maps available on the 911 program’s website: location of all fire hydrants, county commission districts, and voting districts. Howard said the maps will help the public in many areas. “They can see where the county commission districts so they can see which district they live in; voting districts so they can find where all the districts are and where the polling places are and all the fire hydrants in the county are on the grid now, too. That will be a big help to the public and all the fire departments in the county because it shows locations and also how much water pressure is in each one,” Howard said.

Howard said Board of Elections Director DeLaina Green said adding the voting districts and polling places on the website will be a big help to her office, which regularly fields questions from the public on where they should vote.

All of the county’s cemeteries also are on the maps, as well as aerial photography and other features of benefit to county residents.

The mapping is available at:


911 Director Mark Archer, left, with State Director Curtis Sutton.

Murray Man Arrested On Firearms Charges

Murray, Ky.-A Murray man was arrested Sunday by the Kentucky State Police with 18 counts of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and eight counts of possession of a handgun by a convicted felon.

Arrested was Ray. W. Powers, age 48.

While investigating information received by Kentucky State Police, Senior Trooper Jody Cash discovered that Powers was in possession of 18 long guns and 8 handguns, as well as body armor, other explosives paraphernalia, and a substantial amount of ammunition. 

Powers was subsequently charged and lodged in the Calloway County Jail.  Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon is a Class D Felony and Possession of a Handgun by a Convicted Felon is a Class C Felony.

The investigation is continuing by Senior Trooper Jody Cash.

Kentucky State Police was assisted in the investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) and the Calloway County Sheriff’s Office.


Information Sought In Vandalism, Arson


Aftermath of the arson fire on Boxx Rd. in Sharon. (Weakley County Sheriff's photo).

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director

Sharon, Tenn.-A $5,000 reward is being offered for information into who vandalized a car and then set fire to a garage and mobile home over two days on the weekend at a rural Sharon residence.  The State Bomb and Arson investigators are at the scene of the incident and the Weakley County Sheriff’s Office and the Sharon Fire Department is asking for the public’s help in finding the people responsible.

 About 2 a.m. Saturday, the resident at 104 Boxx Rd. heard a loud noise outside his house and saw someone running down his driveway, then running north on Boxx Rd. According to Weakley County Sheriff’s Capt. Randall McGowan, the resident then heard an off-road vehicle crank and then leave the area.

 A check of the area showed that his Nissan Altima had been hit with a blunt object and spray-painted with graffiti. The resident then put his car in his garage until the insurance company could be contacted.

On Sunday evening, he was inside his residence when he went out the back door and observed that his garage was in fire. The Sharon Fire Department was called and the garage was a total loss, with the car inside, and the mobile home was damaged.

McGowan said a witness saw two people running from the garage area and into the woods beside the house.

The resident and a small child were in the home at the time of the fire.



Cherry Jones Narrates Walking Tour On DPA App

By Shannon McFarlin WENK/WTPR News Director 

Paris, Tenn.-For several years, visitors to Paris—and even people already living in Paris—have a wanted a recorded walking tour of historic downtown and now it’s available. It’s not just that, but the recorded walking tour is narrated by Tony and Emmy-Award Winning Actress Cherry Jones of Paris.

The walking tour is just one of many features available on the new Downtown Paris mobile phone app that has recently been launched. Sponsored by the Downtown Paris Association (DPA), the new app is free and available through any app store. 

According to DPA Executive Director Kathy Ray, “Just log in to your app store and search for ‘Downtown Paris Association’ and click download.” 

Ray said the DPA is excited about the app, which represents a year of hard work. The app provides any information on downtown Paris, including places to shop, places to dine, a community calendar, community services, local historic sites, discounts provided by local stores, current downtown news, photos and more.

To receive discounts, Ray said, you need to go to “DEALS” and show the item on your phone to the store.

Quick Response Codes which can be used to access the app quickly will be available in the downtown kiosks for scanning convenience.

Back Alley Ribbon-Cutting Set

Paris, Tenn.-The City of Paris along with the Downtown Paris Association and the Paris Henry County Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a Ribbon Cutting on Tuesday afternoon, September 27, at 5 p.m.

The city officially open the alley on the west side of the Court Square for use to the public at that time. The completion of this alley is the first in a three phase plan to renovate the alleys in Downtown Paris.

State of Tennessee representatives will also be available with a special announcement concerning downtown Paris.

Paris City Manager Kim Foster said, "The alley has been a project designed and completed by the City of Paris. There was a crucial need for this project to correct serious drainage issues occurring in this alley that would in the future cause damage to the buildings adjacent to the alley. This project will offer relief from storm water runoff as well as improve the water quality of the drainage in the downtown area."

The City of Paris Mayor and City Commissioners will be cutting the ribbon and light refreshments will be available.

Following the ribbon cutting the Downtown Paris Association is hosting its monthly Cruise-In on the square featuring live music by the Chill Tonics and special guests, the Local Strangers. Also included in the celebration will be barbeque by Perry’s, craft booths will also be available.

Junior Auxiliary Plans Family Day For Saturday

Union City, Tenn.-This week, the Junior Auxiliary of Obion County is working to finalize plans for its upcoming event, “Healthy Start Healthy Finish”, set for 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, October 1 at Kiwanis Park.

The free event for the children of Obion County and their families will feature field day events, prizes, food, inflatable jumpers, a football toss, face painting and booths from health care providers throughout the community.

The Junior Auxiliary of Obion County has 21 members who each donate a minimum of 50 hours every year to the chapter’s projects, chapter meetings and charity events. The chapter raises funds each year through its annual Charity Ball, BBQ and Blue Jeans, Bake Sale and donations.

The hard work goes on year-round, but during October this year, the JA will pause to say thanks to the community for another year. Anyone interested in having a booth at the event, becoming a member of the local chapter or to make a donation, email Amanda Carr at For more info, visit

Arts 'Round The Square Winners Announced

Dan Knowles with his winning paintings. (Shannon McFarlin photo).

Paris, Tenn.-Winners of the Paris-Henry County Arts Council's Arts 'Round The Square event have been announced. Arts 'Round The Square was held all day Saturday in downtown Paris with food, music and wonderful artists from around the region set up on the court square. More photos from the event were posted on our website and Facebook pages on Saturday.

First place winners this year are: Dan Knowles of Paris, oil and acrylic painting; Martin Paschall of Paris, pottery; Paul Sickels, jewelry; Felicia Blaine, mixed media; and Mike Foster, woodworking.

The complete list of winners:

Oil & Acrylic Painting

1st place Dan Knowles; 2nd place John Monroe


1st place Paul Sickels; 2nd place Mary Buck

Mixed Media

1st place Felicia Blaine; 2nd place Cat McGavin


1st place Martin Paschall; 2nd place Emily Cole


1st place Mike Foster; 2nd place Curran Copeland

Dresden National Night Out Set Tuesday

Dresden, Tenn.-The public is invited to this year's National Night Out in Dresden is set for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Terry Oliver Plaza on Linden Street. The event is sponsored by the Dresden Police and Fire Departments and features free food, games and live music.

Dresden Mayor Jeff Washburn, Weakley County Circuit Court Judge Tommy Moore and other community leaders will speak at the event. 

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