Metro Nashville City Council Votes to Increase Police Spending by $10.5 Million in Finalized Budget; Activists Disrupt Meeting

Activists Disrupt Meeting

Metro Nashville City Council voted to increase its spending on Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) by $10.5 million, per the finalized budget. Mayor John Cooper approved the budget on Wednesday. Some of this funding will go toward the new southeast precinct, totaling up a 5 percent increase. Overall, the budget sits at around $2.6 billion. 

Following passage of the budget during Tuesday’s meeting, the Nashville People’s Budget Coalition shouted down the council members during its 45 minute recess. As a result, the council was unable to continue its business on time.

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Mental Health Clinicians to Join Metro Nashville Police on 911 Calls by June 28

Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) announced Monday that mental health clinicians will join officers on 911 calls through a Co-Response Crisis Intervention Program starting June 28. The pilot program was reportedly modeled after the Support Team Assistance Response (STAR) pilot program in Denver, Colorado.

“The MNPD’s first ever Co-Response Crisis Intervention [Program] (officers teamed with clinicians) begins 6/28. 16 officers from the North and Hermitage Precincts today begin 40 hours of crisis intervention training alongside Mental Health Co-Op staff in preparation for the start,” wrote MNPD.

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Nashville’s Community Oversight Board Submits Hiring Recommendations of Increased Diversity, Implicit Bias History to Metro Nashville Police Department

Metro Nashville Community Oversight Board’s (COB) submitted their hiring recommendations, including diversity increases and bias history requirements, on Friday. 

The COB made the decision to adopt and formally submit the report to the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) during their meeting last Wednesday. 

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Review Board Finds Metro Nashville Police’s 2019 Response to Nashville Bomber Was Inadequate

An after-action review board found that the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) 2019 response to a report of the Nashville bomber was inadequate. They noted that the follow-up to the August 2019 incident had multiple issues: namely, lack of documentation and insufficient information gathered. However, the review board also asserted that its analysis doesn’t mean that the bombing was preventable.

The After-Action Review Board concludes that there is no way to know for sure if the suicide bombing on December 25, 2020 could have been prevented. Law enforcement followed protocols and procedures regarding the 8/21/19 incident, however deficiencies were identified in how the follow-up investigation was conducted. An after-action report, by its very nature, invites the examiners to employ hindsight in reaching their conclusions. But there is danger in that. One must not assume that because certain good practices were not followed or certain actions were not taken, the outcome would have necessarily been different had those proper steps been taken. All we can say for sure is that following the best practices and being diligent creates the best opportunity for a good result next time.

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Nashville Criminals Steal Guns, Take Advantage of Drivers Who Won’t Lock Doors

Thieves throughout Nashville are stealing firearms from other people’s vehicles and even stealing the vehicles themselves because the owners aren’t locking their vehicle doors. “This, according to a press release that members of the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) published this week.

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U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Can’t Confirm Citizenship Status of Gunman Who Shot Metro Nashville Police Officer

Metropolitan Nashville Police Department at house in suburbs

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) couldn’t confirm the citizenship status of Salman Mohamed, the 22-year-old gunman who shot at Metro Nashville Police officers earlier this month. The Tennessee Star placed an open records request with USCIS, only to be told that Mohamed’s date and place of birth would be required in order to verify Mohamed’s citizenship status. The Star offered USCIS this information: Mohamed’s full name, age, last known residence, and date of death.

After assessing your request, and consistent with 6 C.F.R. § 5.3, USCIS FOIA has determined your request did not describe the records sought in sufficient detail to enable our personnel to locate such records with a reasonable amount of effort. A date of birth and place of birth should be provided for the subject of record in order to enable our personnel to locate such records with a reasonable amount of effort. Accordingly, this office is administratively closing your request pursuant to 6 C.F.R. § 5.3(c). This administrative closure does not prejudice your ability to submit a new FOIA request. (emphasis added)

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Nashville’s Community Oversight Board Wants Metro Police to Increase Diversity Hires Based on NAACP-Prompted Report

Metro Nashville’s Community Oversight Board (COB) wants the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) to prioritize diversity when hiring. This came out of an advisory report focused on reforming MNPD hiring procedures, requested by the Nashville NAACP. In the conclusion of its report, the COB insinuated it wasn’t enough for MNPD’s current standards to hire applicants who are critical thinkers, empathetic, problem solvers, good communicators, and have integrity. They recommended that MNPD prioritize diversity more.

“The data analysis in this report shows that there are racial, ethnic, and gender disparities in the hiring process that should be evaluated and addressed so that the goal of diversifying the police force can become a reality,” read the report’s conclusion. “The eleven recommendations offered in this report aim to encourage community, transparency, accountability, equity, justice, and evidence as core components of the police department.”

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Metro Nashville Officer Shot, Hospitalized After Responding to Call Set Up to Lure and Kill Officers

Three Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) officers were ambushed after responding to a 911 call alleging that a woman had been shot. One officer, Brian Sherman, was shot multiple times in the upper left arm and transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center. According to MNPD, the call was a setup executed by an individual that police identified as the gunman, 22-year-old Salman Mohamed. His immigration status is unknown.

In a press conference late Tuesday night, Metro Police Public Information Officer Don Aaron explained that Salman falsely told the 911 operator around 6 p.m. CST that his brother had shot his mother, and that shots were continuing to be fired. Aaron explained that Mohamed answered the door when the MNPD officers knocked on the door of the residence identified in the 911 call about ten minutes later. Only Sherman was hit in the ensuing gunfire.

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Nashville Attorneys Offers Up $2.25 Million Settlement for Daniel Hambrick Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Metro Nashville attorneys settled for $2.25 million with the parents of Daniel Hambrick in their wrongful death lawsuit. That settlement wouldn’t bring closure to the entirety of the ordeal, however. The settlement will not resolve a separate case concerning Andrew Delke, the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) officer who shot Hambrick. Delke still faces a first-degree murder charge.

By offering this settlement, Metro government clarified that neither they or Delke were admitting to any wrongdoing or liability. Metropolitan Director of Law Bob Cooper suggested that this settlement would help offer some closure for the community.

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TBI Investigates Police-Involved Shooting in Nashville of Suspect Who Allegedly Rammed Several Patrol Vehicles

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is looking into an officer-involved shooting Wednesday of a suspect who allegedly rammed several police cars in north Nashville.

The TBI on Wednesday tweeted, “HAPPENING NOW: TBI Agents are investigating a reported officer-involved shooting in Nashville, at a location in the 2200 block of Brick Church Pike.”

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Metro Nashville Police Prepare for Possible Inauguration Day Protest at State Capitol

Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) revealed that it would be adopting a “heightened security posture” at the State Capitol on Inauguration Day. MNPD informed the Metropolitan Council of these measures less than a week after the Capitol Hill riot took place.

In a copy of the letter obtained The Tennessee Star, Chief of Police John Drake informed the council that several unique protests would occur leading up to and on Inauguration Day. He reassured them that there wasn’t any “indication of an imminent threat of violence or danger.”

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‘I Believe in Heroes’: Downtown Features Mural Honoring Police Who Responded to Nashville Bombing

Downtown Nashville now features a mural honoring the six police officers who evacuated residents ahead of the Christmas Day bombing. Sergeant Timothy Miller and officers Brenna Hosey, Amanda Topping, Tyler Luellen, Michael Sipos, James Wells are depicted on a rendition of the famed “I Believe in Nashville” mural series. Their version of the mural reads, “I Believe in Heroes.”

The mural is located at the corner of 2nd Avenue and Broadway, just ahead of the site of the bombing. The street is still blocked off due to the wreckage being cleared away. The groups behind the popular Instagram pages dedicated to the Nashville community and the “I Believe in Nashville” mural series painted the mural with the permission of the building owner, Hard Rock Cafe Nashville. The mural is expected to remain until the window underneath is replaced. After that, it will be framed and hung inside the building.

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Nashville Bomber Anthony Warner Reportedly Wrote to Acquaintances About Lizard People

Nashville bomber Anthony Warner reportedly mailed packages to people he knew before the attack with pages containing nonsensical rambling statements about lizard people and UFOs.

NewsChannel 5 reported on the development in the Christmas Day bombing case.

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Nashville Police Say There Was ‘No Evidence or Reasonable Suspicion’ of Anthony Warner Building Bomb Last Year

Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) stated that last year’s investigation into the Nashville bomber yielded no evidence or suspicion of a crime. Chief John Drake revealed those details in a statement on Anthony Warner, the bomber linked to the Christmas Day explosion in downtown Nashville.

Drake explained that MNPD were called by an attorney to address a suicidal woman with two guns last August. The woman at the scene was Pamela Perry, Warner’s girlfriend at the time. She reported to police that Warner was making bombs in his RV trailer, and stated that both guns belonged to him. The attorney, Raymond Throckmorton III, reportedly represented both Warner and Perry.

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Nashville Police Announce Death of Anthony Warner in Christmas Bombing

Just hours after confirming that 63-year-old Anthony Quinn Warner was under investigation for an explosion that rocked downtown Nashville on Christmas, the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department (MNPD) confirmed that Warner died in that explosion. 

“BREAKING: Law enforcement is now announcing that Anthony Warner, 63, of Bakertown Rd, is the man believed responsible for Friday’s explosion He perished in the blast. No one else is presently believed to have been involved. Thank you to our federal & state partners,” MNPD said in a statement. 

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Metro Nashville Police Arrest Suspect in I-440 Shooting Death of Nurse Caitlyn Kaufman

Metro Nashville Police Department SWAT officers on Friday arrested Devaunte L. Hill in the December 3 murder of Nashville nurse Caitlyn Kaufman as she drove to work on Interstate 440, police said.

Hill, 21, was taken into custody at his apartment in the Berkshire Place complex on Porter Road in East Nashville, MNPD said.

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Mayor John Cooper Announces Detective John Drake as New Metro Nashville Police Chief

Veteran Detective and Interim Chief John Drake has been selected as Metro Nashville Police Department’s new chief, Mayor John Cooper announced Monday at a press conference.

Drake, 56, is a Nashville native who began his MNPD career in 1988 and has served in a number of jobs throughout the department, the city said in a press release here.

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Mayor Cooper’s Policing Policies Commission Says Crime Isn’t Criminals’ Fault – Need to Minimize the Police

Nashville Police

During a meeting last week, Mayor John Cooper’s Policing Policies Commission (PCC) Policies Group indicated aims to diminish police and stated that criminals aren’t entirely at fault for their crimes.

Gideon’s Army Founder and CEO Rasheedat Fetuga was the main guest speaker. Vice Chair Amanda Lucas brought on Fetuga to speak, calling her a “visionary.” 

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After Nearly Ten Thousand People Gather for Nashville Worship Event, Metro Public Health Investigating to File Charges

An estimated nine to ten thousand people attended a “Let Us Worship” protest in downtown Nashville on late Sunday afternoon. The event was hosted by Sean Feucht, a Christian artist known for his leadership in the California-based megachurch, Bethel Church.

Attendees flocked to the Public Square in downtown Nashville, in front of Metro Courthouse. The day of the event, Feucht announced in a Twitter video the last-minute arrangements for time and location.

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Nashville Mayor John Cooper’s Restaurant Police Cite Two Downtown Bars For Having Too Many Customers

Informants reportedly helped Nashville Mayor John Cooper’s restaurant police cite two downtown bars over the weekend.

WSMV reported that a task force cited Dogwood and Rebar, both on Division Street, on Saturday for having too many patrons, including on the patio. The task force had members from Metro Public Health Department, the Metro Nashville Police Department and the Metro Beer Board. The task force checked on Dogwood again on Sunday.

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Local Activist Wendi Mahoney Talks About Her New Fundraiser Lunches For Law Enforcement Officers

Monday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, guest host Ben Cunningham welcomed local Nashville activist Wendi Mahoney to the newsmakers line to discuss her new fundraiser Lunches for Law Enforcement. 

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Tennessee Man Arrested on Eight Charges Connected to Nashville Riots

The Metro Nashville Police Department announced a “significant arrest” Wednesday night in connection to the May 30 riots outside the Metro Courthouse.

According to a press release, authorities have arrested 33-year-old Ryan Keith Ray on eight criminal charges. Ray has been charged with inciting a riot, arson, two counts of burglary, and four counts of felony vandalism.

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Nashville Police Arrest Protesters in Connection with Skateboard Assault on Influential Real Estate Developer

Metro Nashville Police say they arrested a man in connection with an assault on influential real estate developer Tony Giarratana during the May 30 protests.

Nicholas Barrett, 25, on Wednesday was charged with felony aggravated assault for allegedly striking Giarratana from behind with a skateboard outside 505 Church St. during the protest.

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Mayor Cooper Reinforces Police Chokehold Ban, Duty to Intervene

Mayor John Cooper said this week that he has asked the Metro Nashville Police Department to strengthen its policies to “explicitly prohibit the use of chokeholds and to further clarify officers’ duty to intervene.”

However, as the statement from Cooper’s office notes, chokeholds are already prohibited under Tennessee law in most circumstances. Additionally, since the Metro Nashville Police Department (MNPD) doesn’t train officers on the technique, chokeholds are “not allowed per Nashville police policy and have not been allowed for decades,” said the statement.

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Liberal Group Calls on Nashville Police Chief to Resign, More Council Members Support Move

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Tennessee called on Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson to resign in a statement released Wednesday.

“Over the last ten days, tens of thousands of Nashvillians have stood together in peaceful protests to express their outrage over the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. These powerful protests highlight the outrage over the enduring and deep-rooted problem of racist policing and structural racism in the United States,” the group said in its statement.

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Tennessee Authorities Investigating String of Five Officer-Involved Shootings, Including Off-Duty Officer

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has opened investigations into five different officer-involved shootings in the last nine days, including the shooting of an off-duty Metro Nashville officer.

According to a statement from the Metro Nashville Police Department, Officer Darrell Osment was “inexplicably” shot in the back “without warning or provocation” while walking his dog Thursday night. Osment said he was in plain clothes when he encountered a man he did not know on the street.

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Funding, Respect Are Crucial for Metro Nashville Police Department, Swain Says for Peace Officers Memorial Day

  Mayoral candidate Dr. Carol Swain spoke out on her plans to support the Metro Nashville Police Department in light of today being Peace Officers Memorial Day. “This week is National Police Week,” Swain said. “I would like to thank the brave officers who sacrifice their time and put their…

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Tennessee Ranks As One of Worst States in Which to be a Law Enforcement Officer

  Tennessee is near the bottom of the list when it comes to best states to be a police officer, according to a new ranking. Tennessee is 45 of 51 (including Washington, D.C.) of top states in which to be a policeman, according to a ranking by WalletHub. In the…

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Nashville’s Community Oversight Board to Offer Executive Director Job to Chicago Civil Rights Lawyer William Weeden

Nashville’s community oversight board has turned to someone outside of the community – Chicago, to be exact – to lead the organization’s oversight of police. The oversight board voted Tuesday to offer the executive director job to Chicago attorney William Weeden, Nashville Public Radio said. The board selected Weeden over…

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Nashville Promises, Once Again, to Give Rank and File Workers Cost of Living Adjustment Increase

Metro Nashville’s rank and file workers may receive a cost-of-living raise that the city has long promised but failed to deliver after a contentious budget process last year. Nashville Mayor David Briley on Monday announced a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) of 3 percent for all Metro employees in FY 2020, starting…

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Metro Nashville Students So Out of Control Teachers Fear for Their Lives, SROs Fleeing from Alternative Schools, Educators, Officials Say

“Chaos” is one word used by a teacher to describe student behavior in Metro Nashville Schools during a shocking town hall discussion hosted by Phil Williams of NewsChannel 5. A story about the town hall discussion is available here. “There’s no accountability for the students,” one teacher said. Metro Nashville…

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Community Mourns Nashville Musician Allegedly Slain by 5 Youths in Robbery

A memorial service was held Monday at Belmont University to honor alumnus Kyle Yorlets, a musician who was shot and killed during a robbery allegedly committed by five youths, one of them as young as 12. Yorlets, 24, allegedly was shot on Thursday, Feb. 7 by two boys and three…

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Grand Jury Indicts Metro Nashville Police Officer Delke on First-Degree Murder Charge in Hambrick Shooting

A grand jury indicted Metro Nashville Police Department Officer Andrew Delke on a charge of first-degree murder in the shooting of Daniel Hambrick. District Attorney Glenn Funk’s office announced the decision Friday, Nashville Public Radio (WPLN) said. The case will be tried in the Criminal Court of Davidson County, NewsChannel…

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James Smallwood Commentary: Following Vital Police Training Is Never a Crime

by James Smallwood   This week, Americans showed their respect and support of local police by celebrating National Law Enforcement Appreciation day. Many government officials recognized this celebration by issuing proclamations, offering tributes, and declaring their admiration for the men and women who keep us safe. Here in Nashville, District…

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Metro Nashville Police Officers Begin Test Run of Expensive Body Cameras

Metro Nashville plans to roll out body cameras on all officers in 2019, adding another costly layer of regulation to law enforcement. A few officers began testing body cams last week, Nashville Public Radio said. The city and community advocates have pushed for this oversight since at least 2016. The…

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Nashville FOP Demands PAC Stop Using Officer Likenesses to Advocate for Civilian Oversight Board

The Fraternal Order of Police sent a cease-and-desist letter to Accountability Matters PAC, saying the group used police officers’ images without permission to support Amendment 1 (setting up a civilian oversight board). The commercial uses photographs of several Metro Nashville Police Department officers without their permission, James Smallwood, president of…

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Police Civilian Oversight Board Redundant, Expensive, Denies Due Process of Officers: FOP President

A civilian oversight board for the Nashville Metro Police Department “sounds like a warm and fuzzy,” but one expert says that is not the case. James Smallwood is president of the Nashville Fraternal Order of Police. “People immediately think, ‘Well, that’s a great idea,’” Smallwood told The Tennessee Star this…

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Hambrick Family Attorney Goes Off the Rails in WTN Interview on Police Shooting

WTN radio’s Dan Mandis tried to hold a reasoned debate with the attorney representing the family of a man who was shot and killed by Metro Nashville Police last month. Mandis hosted attorney Joy Kimbrough on his Super Talk 99.7 program Monday. The audio is available here. Kimbrough represents the…

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Anti-ICE Protest Strains Nashville Police, While Bredesen Stays Quiet on Threat To City Where He Was Once Mayor

CoreCivic protesting ICE

The Metro Nashville Police Department reported it arrested 20 anti-ICE protesters Monday, pulling officers away from their regular duties. Meanwhile, Democratic Senate candidate Phil Bredesen has been silent about the public safety issue. Dozens of protesters descended on the Green Hills headquarters of private prison company CoreCivic and blocked the…

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6 Shootings in Nashville in 24 Hours Highlight Double-Digit Increases in Violent Crimes

Nashville Police

Officers with the Metro Nashville Police Department responded to at least six unrelated shootings in less than 24 hours, NewsChannel 5 reported Saturday. Meanwhile, police report a spike in violent crimes in the state’s capital. The first shooting happened around 10:30 p.m. Friday on Joseph Avenue at Riverchase Apartments. Officials…

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Bird Scooter Company’s Efforts to Wing It Makes Metro Nashville Mad as a Wet Hen

Some are saying that rental scooters in Nashville pose a safety concern following a hit and run crash Sunday. Metro Nashville Police were searching for a black Lexus sedan that allegedly hit and critically injured two Bird scooter riders Sunday at Fifth Avenue North and Union Street, a police press…

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Mayor Barry’s Alleged ‘Off the Clock’ Adultery Has Public Implications for City Government Operations

Since publicly admitting to concealing her two year adulterous relationship with Sgt. Robert Forrest while he was an active duty Metro police officer and head of her security detail, Mayor Megan Barry has tried to convince the public that what she claims was an “off the clock” private affair, has no…

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Young Man Fatally Shot on Nashville MTA Bus

An 18-year-old has been charged in the fatal shooting Monday of another 18-year-old on a Nashville Metro Transit Authority (MTA) bus in Madison. Antonio S. Jones is charged with criminal homicide in the fatal shooting of his acquaintance, Tyvonceea Hayden. The shooting happened at noon as the bus was traveling…

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Eight Arrested After Fight at Music City Central Bus Station in Downtown Nashville

Eight young people were arrested Tuesday afternoon outside the Music City Central bus station in downtown Nashville as a result of a physical altercation. Some resisted arrest when police arrived. Patricia Hill, 18, allegedly struck an officer in the face and continued to struggle with him until taken into custody,…

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No Road Closures Planned For Monday’s Eclipse, Nashville Authorities Say

No eclipse-related road closures are planned for Monday, according to a Metro Nashville Police Department press release issued this week. Authorities are cautioning people to be aware of moving traffic and not get distracted by viewing the eclipse. “Nashville has a number of places to safely watch and enjoy next…

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