Nashville

Autopsy finds several drugs involved in death of Nashville mayor’s son

A Colorado autopsy report released Wednesday says Max Barry, son of Nashville Mayor Megan Barry, died from a combination of several drugs, including opioids, reports The Tennessean.

Drugs found in Max Barry following his death were Xanax, marijuana and two opioids — liquid methodone and hydromorphone. The autopsy also showed that he had recently used cocaine.

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Nashville Mayor Barry’s son dies of apparent drug overdose

News release from Nashville Mayor Megan Barry’s office

Max Barry, son of Mayor Megan Barry and Bruce Barry, died from an apparent overdose in Denver, Colorado on the evening of Saturday, July 29. Mayor Megan Barry and Bruce Barry have released a statement on this tragic news:

“Early this morning, we received news that no parents should ever have to hear. Our son Max suffered from an overdose and passed away. We cannot begin to describe the pain and heartbreak that comes with losing our only child. Our son was a kind soul full of life and love for his family and friends.

Our family would greatly appreciate your thoughts and prayers, and would respectfully ask for privacy as we mourn the loss of our child and begin to understand a world without his laughter and love in our lives.”

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Nashville surgeon running for Harwell’s House District 56 seat

Dr. Brent Moody, a Nashville surgeon and a Republican, tells The Tennessean he will run to succeed Beth Harwell in the state House seat being vacated by House speaker, who will run for governor instead of seeking reelection there.

“I think the people of the 56th District have been represented well by Speaker Harwell for a long time, so there will be a new choice for the people of the 56th District,” Moody said. “My plan is to get out there in due course and let them meet me.”

The 47-year-old skin cancer surgeon filed paperwork and appointed a treasurer for his campaign Monday.

Although Moody waited for Harwell to publicly announce her gubernatorial run over the weekend before filing his papers, he previously talked to the speaker about his intentions. She was helpful and gave him some advice, Moody said.

Word spread unofficially in the Spring that Moody could be considering the position after he posted a photo on Twitter on April 3rd of him meeting with House Majority Leader Glen Casada and Harwell.

Nashville state Senate candidate sending campaign emails to school employees

Would-be state senator Howard Jones has been blasting mass emails asking for donations to his fellow Metro Nashville Public Schools employees in violation of school policy, reports the Nashville Scene.

Jones is running for the District 19 seat currently held by state Sen. Thelma Harper; state Rep. Brenda Gilmore is also running.

Jones, a Baptist minister and assistant principal at John F. Kennedy Middle School, has been sending emails from his campaign account to staff at many, if not all, schools in the district — although apparently none to anyone in the administration and central offices.

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‘Political realities’ leave Nashville immigration ordinances dead

Citing “political realities,” Metro Nashville Councilman Bob Mendes has abandoned an attempt to seek approval of city ordinances that critics said would make Nashville a “sanctuary city” for illegal immigrants, reports The Tennessean.

He claimed the proposals had the support of a majority of Nashvillians but pointed to a backlash in more conservative parts of Tennessee.

“Despite the popular support in Davidson County, there’s been a great deal of opposition from outside the county, and these bills have become a political football for people running for governor in the Republican primary and other races statewide,” Mendes said at a Wednesday afternoon news conference.

“It’s almost become a race to the bottom to see who can criticize Nashville more, who can criticize immigrants more.

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Nashville ‘sanctuary city’ ordinance shelved amid new legal opinion, Republican howls of protest

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry urged city council members Tuesday to reconsider their support for an ordinance that critics – including most of the state’s Republican politicians, it seems – contend would make the state’s capitol a “sanctuary city” for illegal immigrants.

The council members sponsoring the ordinance, meanwhile, announced they are scrapping plans for a final vote on the proposal July 6. They didn’t say when, or if, it will be rescheduled.

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Republicans bash Nashville immigration ordinance (including pledge to invalidate it, if passed)

Nashville’s Democrat-dominated Metro Council approved Tuesday on second reading – with a third approval required next month – a “Nashville together” ordinance that would prohibit using any city funds, resources or facilities to assist enforcement of federal immigration laws.

The state’s Republican officeholders have been bashing the move since then. Here’s a sampler with one pro-ordinance press release thrown in.

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Nashville judge, facing federal charges, resigns

Nashville General Sessions Judge Casey Moreland, facing federal obstruction of justice charges, has resigned from the bench effective Tuesday, reports The Nashville Post.

Moreland’s lawyer submitted his resignation letter to a federal magistrate judge during a pretrial detention hearing (Friday), during which Magistrate Judge Joe Brown decided Moreland could return home while he awaits trial.

Mayor Megan Barry and several Metro Council members had previously called for Moreland’s resignation over allegations included in an FBI investigation that the judge had attempted to pay more than $6,000 to have a witness sign a false affidavit as well as plant drugs on the same witness in order to discredit her.

Moreland’s resignation is effective April 4.

The magistrate judge ruled that Moreland could be released prior to his trial, with conditions restricting his travel and communication with others. Moreland’s wife, Jacqueline, testified that the judge has experienced symptoms of depression and alcoholism for the past few years, and she agreed to oversee the conditions of his release. The two have not lived together since early February, after news media accounts revealed he had been involved in a relationship with the witness in the investigation, who was previously a defendant in his Nashville courtroom.

Legislature overrides local marijuana decriminalization

The Senate gave final approval Monday evening to a bill to override Nashville and Memphis city ordinances that authorized a civil penalty of $50 for possession of small amounts of marijuana.

The Senate vote was 26-5. The House gave approval 65-28 last week. Sponsors were Sen. Jack Johnson, R-Brentwood, and Rep. William Lamberth, R-Cottontown. The bill (HB173) now goes to the governor for his expected signature.

“The last thing we need to do is create a patchwork of laws in this state regarding criminal conduct,” said Sen. Ken Yager, R-Kingston, in supporting the bill in a Senate floor speech.

Sen. Jeff Yarbro, D-Nashville, noted the Nashville and Memphis ordinances both gave police officers discretion on when to issue a citation instead of making an arrest under state law while the bill’s language prohibits “any policy guideline or practice” by local governments on marijuana laws that is contrary to state law.

In doing so, Yarbro said, the bill with that language is effectively prohibiting officers from use of their discretion, something that is common practice statewide every day.

Sen. Sara Kyle, D-Memphis, said the bill puts the legislature on “a slippery slope” of taking control away from local elected officials when they should be given more flexibility, not less.

Johnson countered that “the slippery slope is when we start allowing local governments to decide which laws they want to enforce and which ones they do not want to enforce.”

Trump in Nashville: Time to ’embrace our glorious national destiny’

President Donald Trump touted his first 60 days in office as the most productive ever for a president during a Nashville rally Wednesday and, drawing roars from the thousands in attendance, slammed a Hawaii federal judge’s decision that temporarily halted the administration’s new attempt to ban most travel from six majority Muslim countries.

Further from The Tennessean:

He also promised to repeal Obamacare while throwing his support behind a House Republican effort to overhaul the controversial law and vowing additional changes of his own.

“It’s time for us to embrace our glorious national destiny,” Trump said at the conclusion of his 40-minute speech.

Trump took the stage Wednesday evening later than expected as long lines of supporters waited in the cold to get into Municipal Auditorium because of a security bottleneck and confusion. Over the course of the day, the line of people grew several blocks long, circling the perimeter of the state Capitol.

At the lawn of the Metro courthouse, thousands of protesters jeered as the president arrived in downtown Nashville. Inside the 1960s-era arena, multiple protesters interrupted Trump’s speech and were escorted out — including one woman holding a sign that read, “Medicare for all.”

Trump’s loyalists responded with chants of “Trump!” and “USA!” that were akin to his many stump speeches last year.

Trump, escorted by Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and the state’s two Republican U.S. senators, began his afternoon in Nashville at The Hermitage, historic home of Jackson, the nation’s seventh president whose populist appeal has drawn comparison to Trump.

“He understood that great leadership was about putting America first,” Trump said shortly after taking the stage for his rally. “It’s time that America heard your voice, and believe me, on Nov. 8, they heard your voice.”

ABOUT THIS BLOG

Former Knoxville News Sentinel capitol bureau chief Tom Humphrey writes about Tennessee politics, government, and legislative news.

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