Man jailed for hurling puppy from vehicle

-A A +A
By Damon Lawrence

Jack Lee Chesser Jr. was arrested on Thursday for cruelty to animals.

A witness told police he saw Chesser throw a puppy out of a moving truck.

According to a Roane County Sheriff’s Office report, the witness retrieved the puppy and drove to Ladd Landing, where he saw the truck.

“The witness states that the passenger of the truck, identified as Jackie Chesser, approached him and kicked his vehicle,” the report said. “... On scene, I observed a small puppy that was visibly shaken, covered in gasoline and further observed that Jackie Chesser reeked of gasoline as well.”

The report said Chesser, 41, admitted to having the puppy in the truck, but claimed it jumped out the window.

The puppy was taken to a veterinarian and later turned over to Roane County Animal Control.

Josh Strickland with animal control said the puppy was a mixed breed and it was doing fine on Friday.

Strickland said they planned to put it up for adoption after three business days.


According to Roane County Criminal Court records, the six counterfeit charges facing Paul Edward Smith are from an October 2010 indictment.

Smith, 37, wasn’t taken into custody until Aug. 11, however. Sheriff Jack Stockton said a correctional officer picked him up from Blount County.

Smith was scheduled to be arraigned last Friday in Roane County Criminal Court on the counterfeit charges.

A General Sessions Court warrant was taken out on Smith in August 2010 after he failed to appear on charges of violation of probation, evading arrest and driving on a revoked license. He’s scheduled to appear in sessions court for the failure to appear on Aug. 29.  


A man on the Kentucky Sex Offender Registry was arrested in Rockwood on Aug. 10. Donald Horace Barnes, 54, is charged with failing to register as a sex offender.

Police responded to 603 S. Gateway Ave., No. 5, with Child Protective Services on a report that a sex offender had been staying at the address with small children and failed to register after moving to Tennessee from Kentucky.

“When asked, Mr. Barnes stated that he had made no attempt to register and did not know that he was required to,” the arrest warrant said.

Debra Lynn Burgess, identified as Barnes’ girlfriend, told police that Barnes had been living in Rockwood since July 31.

Burgess also said she and Barnes had been fighting because he refused to go register.

Barnes profile on the Kentucky Sex Offender Registry said he was a, “Move in offender from Ohio, original conviction for rape.”


A Knoxville woman who swindled TVA could have to pay the agency $21,465 in restitution. Cheryl E. Hall is scheduled to be sentenced in federal court on Tuesday.

“The government will request restitution for the TVA in the amount of $21,465,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a sentencing memorandum.   

In February, Hall pleaded guilty to making false oaths in bankruptcy proceedings and theft of public money, property or records.

According to court documents, Hall was a business support representative for TVA police. She purchased equipment and supplies for TVA police with a Visa purchasing card.

Court records said an audit of the card’s use revealed that Hall purchased items not used by the TVA police on multiple occasions.

“Items purchased included ammunition and clothing of a type not used by TVA police,” court records said. “In an effort to cover her tracks she falsified at least 22 invoices.”

Court records also said Hall borrowed money from friends to purchase approximately 10 extravagant firearms for a married TVA policeman with whom she started an affair with in February 2009.

“Many of these loans were from elderly individuals that the defendant had known since childhood,” court records said.

“All told, the defendant bilked victims out of more than $200,000 and bought approximately $100,000 in weapons that she gifted to her married boyfriend.”

Hall’s attorney, Laura Davis, identified the TVA policeman as James “Rick” Lafollette. Davis also claimed in a sentencing memorandum that Hall was gullible and Lafollette took advantage of her.  

“Rick Lafollette quickly learned if he paid attention to Ms. Hall and made her feel special, she would do just about anything for him,” the memorandum said.

“The money stolen via the TVA (police) credit card was mostly on purchases for things Rick wanted.”

TVA spokesman Scott Brooks said Lafollette is no longer employed by TVA.  

“Personnel records are federally protected,” Brooks said. “I can tell you that all uniformed patrol officer positions were eliminated as of mid-April.”