Updates to our Terms of Use

We are updating our Terms of Use. Please carefully review the updated Terms before proceeding to our website.

Monday, June 24, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Tenn. State Senator Arrested for Mayhem

DICKSON, Tenn. (CN) - An outgoing Tennessee state senator was arrested two nights in a row for stalking and threatening his neighbor.

According to police records obtained by Courthouse News, Sen. Jim Summerville was first arrested on Friday, Oct. 17. around 6:30 p.m. for stalking a neighbor in Dickson, Tenn. The neighbor told police that Summerville put up a sign facing her house that said, "keep it up, you've been warned."

The neighbor filed an earlier report with police in September regarding Summerville's behavior, according to the records.

"Mr. Summerville began parking his car so close to her driveway that it made it difficult for her to pull out onto the street. She stated he used a flashlight to shine it into her residence late at night, and even shined it on her guests as they left her residence," the incident report states. "She stated that he even went to the point of putting the flashlight on the fence to shine into her residence, and changed the batteries around midnight so it would keep shining into her residence throughout the night."

Other allegations made by the state senator's neighbor include Summerville yelling obscenities and flipping off her and her guests, hitting her fence with a cane, and throwing toilet paper on her front porch.

The police report, written by Officer Andrew Perez, states that Summerville appeared intoxicated while talking to police and made a sign that read, "Police harassment in progress."

"He held the sign in front of him as if he were picketing. At one point he placed the sign on the hood of my patrol car and stated, "get this on camera,'" the Perez report states.

Summerville was arrested and was taken to the Dickson County jail on a $2,000 bond. He was also given a citation earlier in the evening for animals at large after his dogs began barking loudly and ran down the road.

The senator was arrested again on Saturday morning, Oct. 18, for assault against the same neighbor. He held up the same "keep it up, you've been warned" sign and waived a can of mace at the neighbor and her landlord.

According to an incident report compiled after the second incident, after Summerville got out of jail late Friday night, he went over to the neighbor's house to retrieve a pair of shoes from her porch.

According to Officer Michael Phillips, the neighbor feared he would assault her or vandalize her house. Summerville was arrested for assault and taken to Dickson County jail again, this time on a $10,000 bond.

The two incidents are the senator's only recent brush with the law; in September the Associated Press reported he was arrested and charged with public intoxication for drinking in his neighbors' yards.

Summerville's term ends after the Nov. 4 election. Until then, he represents Cheatham, Dickson, Hickman, Humphreys and Robertson counties. His political affiliation is independent.

Categories / Uncategorized

Subscribe to Closing Arguments

Sign up for new weekly newsletter Closing Arguments to get the latest about ongoing trials, major litigation and hot cases and rulings in courthouses around the U.S. and the world.