A killer reporterHere’s some old news that just recently came across our desk: Faced with spending the next 56 years of his life behind bars, Perry March decided to fashion a new career for himself as an ace investigative reporter. Shortly after he was sentenced in October 2006 for the murder of his wife Janet March, the convicted killer and onetime attorney filed a handwritten public information request with the Tennessee Department of Correction asking for information about the prison’s long distance provider. Specifically, March wanted a copy of the contract between the state of Tennessee and Global Tel*Link, which March sarcastically described as the company that “administers” (those quotes were his) the inmate telephone system. Memo to March: You’re in prison. You’re not allowed to have anyone in “your five.”
March closed his request with a plea that was almost as arrogant as it was pathetic: “I am incarcerated and indigent, and would appreciate you forwarding these documents to me, first class postage pre-paid, within seven days of the date of this letter.”
Clearly March never dealt with a governmental agency before. The Tennessee Department of Correction responded to March’s correspondence alright—two months later, on Jan. 18, 2007. In the letter recently obtained by the Scene, the department agrees to turn over public records about Global Tel*Link, but not without a price.
“The charge for providing the copies of these records is $.20 per page,” writes the department’s lawyer. “If you wish to purchase copies of these materials, please contact Lt. Joel Foster at your facility to make arrangements.”
If this is not quite poetic justice, it’s still perversely satisfying.
Oily customersIf it sounds too good to be true (like, let’s say, free gas), then it probably is. But unfortunately for two Nashvillians, the lure of a free fill-up was just too enticing, landing them both in trouble with the law.
After receiving several tips about motorists loitering at a Harding Place Shell Station when the business was closed, South Precinct detectives staked out the station, believing they were about to bust an ongoing drug operation. At about 1:30 a.m., two drivers pulled up to the pumps as officers watched from across the street. Nearly 45 minutes later, the cars were still there, yet no drug deal had gone down. Finally officers cruised into the parking lot with sirens blaring, blocking both cars from leaving.
The stunned suspects—a 21-year-old female college student and a 36-year-old family man—told police they did not know each other and were only there to get gas. Just then, gasoline began to overflow from the female driver’s tank, although no gallon or dollar amount appeared on the pump.
The young woman explained that several classmates told her it was possible to manipulate the credit card machine at this particular station after hours to get free gas. The male suspect then said he heard about the trick from his wife, who learned of it from her co-workers. The only catch was that the stolen gasoline flowed very slowly, causing the thieves to brazenly remain at the pumps for lengthy periods of time.
Although police busted these two late-night petrol pilferers and issued misdemeanor citations, other drivers managed to pull off the apparently popular scheme without getting caught, according to their report: “Officers found numerous credit card receipts on the ground and in the trash cans that showed $0.00, indicating that a number of motorists took part in the thievery.”
Class warfareMetro Council members are supposed to preside over arcane zoning disputes and sponsor resolutions honoring diligent Girl Scout troops. Once a year, they rubber-stamp the mayor’s budget proposal. And that’s about it. We certainly don’t want any council members, many of whom have trouble speaking a few words without throwing in an “I reckon,” having a say in how our kids be educatin’.
But don’t tell that to Duane Dominy, the otherwise agreeable Antioch council member who is proposing legislation that would require school administrators to spend time as substitute teachers. Dominy’s grandstanding bill, which is still to be drafted, is not binding—it would merely ask the school board to consider using all officials above the level of principal to spend more time in a classroom. Like the school board will listen to anyone. Our dysfunctional board has struggled even to select a firm to search for a replacement for the schools director who they fired after they initially gave him a vote of confidence. So there’s that. But here’s the more pressing question to anyone who has ever tried to watch Channel 3: Do we really want a council member from Antioch—or Hillsboro Village or Inglewood or West Meade—telling high-paid administrators how do to their jobs when most of them can’t even figure out how to regulate duplexes? That’s what we thought.
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