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Domestic assault charge against Rockwood High principal dismissed

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By Damon Lawrence

The domestic assault charge against Rockwood High School Principal Shannon Cawood was dismissed Monday afternoon in Roane County General Sessions Court.

The alleged victim is his wife, Midway Middle School Principal Amy Cawood. She appeared with him in court.

“I do not wish to pursue the case against him,” she wrote in a letter that was entered into the court record. “I do not fear Shannon. He has taken it upon himself to seek counseling with a private licensed marriage and family therapist.”

District Attorney General Russell Johnson told Judge Terry Stevens that the state of Tennessee has the option to seek an indictment against Shannon Cawood over the next year. Johnson said his office will not do so if certain conditions are met.

“What we are asking the court to approve is a voluntary dismissal in this matter,” Johnson said. “With these statements being made, assurances of defense counsel that Mr. Cawood will continue with his course of therapy and that he'll do something above and beyond his normal work and volunteer activities in the form of community service over that period of time and get the information to us.”

“We meet again in the Roane County grand jury in June, again in October and then again in February,” Johnson added. “We have three opportunities between now and then to bring this matter back to a new bill indictment to the grand jury if he does not comply with what he has through his defense counsel assured us he will do, if he does not maintain good behavior, or if there is any further incident of violence.”

Defense attorney John McFarland told Stevens that Shannon Cawood would abide by those conditions.

Stevens asked Amy Cawood a series of questions before accepting the agreement on the voluntary dismissal.

“Ms. Cawood, you understand that you do not have to request the case be dismissed today?” Stevens asked.

“Yes, sir,” she responded.

“Has anybody pressured you, forced you to do anything other than what you're doing here today?” Stevens asked.

“No, sir,” she responded.

“Do you feel like you're under any sort of threat or influence from anybody other than yourself?” Stevens asked.

“No, sir,” she responded.

For more on this story, read Wednesday's edition of the Roane County News.