Thick tongues, mushy mouths


“Mush mouthed and thick tongued”

Knox County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Joshua Hodge was wrapping up a call on Parkside Drive just before midnight Feb. 13 when the previously quiet night suddenly turned, well, not so quiet.

“I heard a loud crashing sound and saw smoke coming from around the building,” Hodge wrote in the ensuing report. “I then ran around the building to observe a white Chevy Aveo crashed into the wall of Turkey Creek Medical Center.”

The driver, a 33-year-old man, was slumped over the wheel with his foot still firmly planted on the gas pedal. After being pulled from the vehicle, the man “appeared to have no knowledge of the wreck he was just involved in,” Hodge said. 

In addition to being unsteady on his feet and having pinpoint pupils, the man “appeared mush mouthed and appeared to be thick tongued,” Hodge said. 

The man claimed that he’d been trying to counter one type of drug withdrawal by using a different drug, then refused to consent to a blood test and refused any medical treatment. He was jailed for DUI and violating the implied consent law, Hodge reported. 

Damage to the building was estimated by Hodge to be around $1,000.

Bevy of bad ideas  

An order of protection (OP) is designed to protect you from another person who allegedly poses a threat to your well-being. Cops, prosecutors, and judges all do their parts to make an OP work by, well, ordering the person you’re afraid of to stay away from you or face the legal consequences.

An OP won’t work, however, if you keep hanging around with the person who is considered to be a threat to you. You shouldn’t call them, go to lunch with them, or invite them over to your home on the weekend to do tequila shots. Any of those things is a bad idea.

Unfortunately, some people are drawn to bad ideas in the same way that an orange tabby is drawn to catnip.

The Knoxville Police Department officers who responded to a reported disturbance were likely all but overwhelmed by the tidal wave of bad ideas that greeted them at the front door of an apartment on Bedrock Way at 3:20 a.m. Feb. 14.

You see, the woman who lived in the apartment had invited three people over for an evening of booze and television. She’d gotten into an argument with one of her guests, a man who then proceeded to punch her TV until the screen broke, cutting up his hand and spattering the room with blood.

A female guest then tried to intervene and was rewarded with a punch in her face.

It turned out that the whole affair legally shouldn’t have happened in the first place because the apartment’s occupant had previously taken out an OP against him. 

“But he still comes over every weekend,” noted the officer who wrote the report.

The jackass with the bleeding hand made himself scarce before police arrived, but both women said they wished to press charges.

With friends like these....

A woman called E-911 around 10 a.m. Feb. 15 to say that her car had inexplicably suffered severe front-end damage while she slept.

The mystery was at least partially resolved when KPD officers arrived at the Wilson Avenue home and the lady explained that she didn’t actually live there. Rather, she’d spent the night partying and had passed out drunk inside the house only to find her car damaged when she got up the next day. 

She wasn’t alone in the house, however, and the other people who were present filled in the gaps in her narrative. They explained that after the woman had conked out, an unnamed male subject had lifted her car keys and then taken those occupants of the home who were still conscious on a late-night food run. 

“The witnesses stated they were afraid due to the suspect’s reckless driving and made him drop them back off at the residence,” according to the police report.

The suspect then took off with the car and stayed gone for several hours. When he finally returned, they claimed, the vehicle had apparently been wrecked and he chose to make himself scarce before she woke up.

The officers said they couldn’t identify the suspect and gave the woman a case information card. 

A woman at an Atlantic Avenue address reported learning a similar trust lesson on Feb. 13 when the generous decision to loan her car to a male friend backfired.

The problem wasn’t that he failed to return the vehicle or that it was damaged. The problem was that he asked to borrow it again, let slip that he wanted to “go buy dope,” and then stole $250 in cash from her dresser when she had to temerity to tell him, “No.”

The victim wasn’t going to just let her property walk out the door and so decided to put up a fight. Unfortunately, she lost the altercation and the thief managed to get away. 

The cops later noted it was clear from the condition of her home that a struggle had taken place but also indicated they couldn’t locate the suspect.  

Who’d have thought that happy endings and substance abuse don’t often go together?

Tales of the Scruffy City is compiled from public records provided on request by the Knoxville Police Department, Knox County Sheriff’s Office, and other government agencies. We do not identify the citizens who appear in these reports in order to protect their privacy. Many of those who appear in police reports are guilty of nothing more than having a bad day, while even those who are formally accused of a crime are innocent until proven guilty. Tales of the Scruffy City is Copyright 2021 by Hard Knox Wire.

J.J. Stambaugh may be reached at 

Published on March 4, 2021