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Former candidate scraps with deputy

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Ledbetter breaks taser used against him

By Damon Lawrence

It took pepper spray, tasering and a sheriff’s deputy’s tackle to subdue a former candidate for Roane County’s top political office after he was stopped for allegedly speeding.
Miles Ledbetter Jr., who finished third in the 2010 campaign for county executive, was arrested on Sunday on charges of assault and resisting arrest. Ledbetter, 33, was also cited for speeding.
According to a Roane County Sheriff’s Office incident report, Deputy Brandon Smith was at the intersection of Hwy. 58 and Smalley Lane when he clocked Ledbetter going 77 mph in a 55-mph zone.
“When the truck made a complete stop, the driver exited the vehicle pointing back towards me and yelling,” the report said.
Ledbetter, according to the report, later became aggressive with the deputy.
“I deployed my taser, striking Mr. Ledbetter in the chest,” the report said. “Mr. Ledbetter grabbed the taser prongs and broke one of the wires, causing it to lose contact. Mr. Ledbetter then came towards me swinging his fists.”
The deputy pepper sprayed Ledbetter in the face, but that failed to incapacitate him.
Smith also reported giving Ledbetter a “one drive-stun to his back” that was unsuccessful in gaining compliance.
“I told central dispatch that I needed back-up and that Mr. Ledbetter had been tased and sprayed,” the report said.
Deputy Stan Hohulin responded to help Smith.
“At that time Mr. Ledbetter became more aggressive and stated he was going to tear my head off and started swinging at me, striking me in the chest,” the report said. “In return, I tackled Mr. Ledbetter taking him to the ground. Deputy Hohulin assisted me in placing Mr. Ledbetter under arrest.”
Ledbetter was still in custody at the Roane County Jail on a $5,000 bond Tuesday afternoon. 
Ledbetter also allegedly fought with police in January when they went to his house to arrest him on harassment charges. He had allegedly contacted the Sony Music offices in Nashville and threatened to blow up employees and members of the music community.  
Ledbetter ran against Ron Woody and Mike Farmer for county executive.
He received 6.7 percent of the vote in the race that was won by Woody.