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Tara Cole
9 months ago

8 years... & I still remember my Friend, Tara Cole... & hope that she is Peaceful with Jesus now...

Bobby W. Elliott.

BALLAD OF TARA COLE
7 years ago
http://freedomtracks.com/balladoftaracole.html BALLAD OF TARA COLE [ country-folk ] Let me tell y’all a story ‘bout a girl named Tara Cole Who slept in Riverfront Park where the Cumberland waters flow One night two men who didn’t want the homeless comin’ ‘round Rolled her in the muddy river and young Tara Cole drowned American river of tears flowing from sea to once shinin’ sea Beside your banks homeless children lie in wretched misery Can’t we read between the lines and warnin’ signs of the times? The hole in the sky and in our soul keeps on growin’ And American river of tears keeps on flowin’ Tara was a meek lowly lamb, they called her “Little Bit” Though she tried, she often cried that she never could quite fit In a city with little pity focused on the bottom line Though in plain daylight she was ignored most all the time American river of tears flowing from sea to once shinin’ sea Beside your banks homeless children lie in wretched misery Can’t we read between the lines and warnin’ signs of the times? The hole in the sky and in our soul keeps on growin’ And American river of tears keeps on flowin’ You know, a mighty nation once united is splittin’ apart at the seams Like a great ship without a rudder tossed in a nightmare of broken dreams Now, we sing this song for Tara Cole that her death be not in vain Let's pull together, help each other, be a united nation once again Can’t we read between the lines and warnin’ signs of the times? Our children will reap these seeds of hate we’re sowin’ And American river of tears keeps on flowin’ Copyright © January 1st, 2007 by freedom Tracks Music. All rights reserved. *Fair use for the purposes of this forum, in order to address social justice issues, economic issues, issues of racial and homeless profiling. Please do NOT take copies of these lyrics.
from the Freedom Tracks website
7 years ago
Tara Cole TARA "Little Bit" COLE
On an August summer night in 2006, a young homeless female named Tara Cole was sleeping on a wharf at Riverfront Park in Nashville, Tennessee, when two men stepped out of the shadows and rolled her into the Cumberland River.  Witnesses tried but were unable to rescue her.
Tara's body was found ten days later when the city, after several nights of ongoing vigil and much prodding from local advocates, finally moved a barge (see letter from K-9 Search & Rescue officer below claiming body could have been found much sooner).  This is the second known deliberate killing of a homeless Nashville resident within the past two years, both apparently murdered for being poor.  (biography below)


Click Here for "Ballad of Tara Cole" lyrics
8 years ago
From: "Homeless Power" info@homelesspower.org To: info@homelesspower.org Subject: Homeless Power: Tara Cole Study Date: Wed, 8 Nov 2006 15:41:52 -0600 For Immediate Release: NASHVILLE HOMELESS POWER PROJECT RESPONDS TO FIRE DEPARTMENT REVIEW OF TARA COLE RECOVERY CASE FIRE DEPARTMENT CONCLUDES: “Tara Cole’s body could have been discovered sooner, had the barge been moved sooner.” The Metro Fire Department released a report from a study on the recovery process of homeless woman Tara Cole on October 31st, 2006. In this study, Stephen D. Halford, Director-Chief Fire Department concludes: “...I do believe, however, that there is a reasonable probability that Tara Cole’s body could have been discovered sooner, had the barge been moved sooner.” (Page 8). The study also shares that: “It appears, however, that the initial request to have the barge moved on Monday, August 14th was not pursued after Wednesday August 16th.” For the full report go to: http://www.nashfire.org/press/OEM_recoveryOP_review.htm The Nashville Homeless Power Project just became aware of the study on November 8th. As an organization, the Nashville Homeless Power Project would like to formerly thank the workers of the Metro’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM), the Police Department, the Fire Department, Parks and Recreation, who worked so hard to help recover the body of Tara Cole. We also offer specific thanks Sergeant Nikki Ivey, Volunteer, K-9 Handler and Team Leader, of Metro OEM of advocating moving the barge as quickly as possible. Clemmie Greenlee, formerly homeless and staff person for the Nashville Homeless Power Project shares: “Would the barge have been moved earlier if Tara Cole was the daughter of one of our Council Members? Would the barge have been moved if her family had been identified on August 11th instead of August 16th?” John Zirker, formerly homeless and President of the Nashville Homeless Power Project shares: “Tara Cole was not only chronically homeless but also known as gentle and “would never hurt a fly”. We are thankful that the Mayor’s Commission to End Chronic Homelessness has a plan to house chronically homeless people, such as Tara Cole, saving tax dollars and keeping people safe. We hope they reflect that commitment sooner rather than later. Otherwise, there may be another Tara Cole.” OTHER RELEVANT EXCERPTS FROM THE STUDY, Page 5 Tuesday, 8-15-06 Day Five …Roy Wilson talked to Tom Cross in the Department of Law about a proposed agreement from Ingram to Metro Parks regarding barge movement. The proposed agreement from Ingram would require the Metropolitan Government to pay any costs incurred by Ingram, including damages caused by Ingram’s own negligent or intentional acts relative to barge movement. Tom Cross immediately completed review and explained to Roy Wilson that the indemnity provision would need to be removed before the Metropolitan Government could legally agree. In the afternoon Scott Harris called Metro Parks and inquired into the status of moving the barge. Mike Bayes advises that there is a specific legal issue involved with moving the barge and that the proposed vendor, Ingram, advises that a hold harmless agreement must be signed before they move the barge. Mike Bays advises Scott Harris that they (Metro Parks) are working to resolve the problem. Page 4, Wednesday, 8-16-06 Day Six Scott Harris further states that before leaving, Nikki Ivey reported to him her K-9 alerted down river between the two bridges, but was not positive on the alert. In contrast, Nikki Ivey states that she advised Scott Harris that the body was under the barge and that she was 95% certain. Page 8 When reviewing the entire situation, the most significant question begged is why no action was taken in executing the agreement to get the barge moved between August 16th and August 20th. Page 8 full report: The contractor responsible for movement and set up of the barge, the Ingram Barge Company, promptly received the request from the Metro Parks on either Monday or Tuesday August 14th or 15th, however, upon the advice of their legal counsel, Ingram advised they could not move the fully loaded barge unless Metro would agree to “indemnify” Ingram for any damages that might result from the move. Ingram stated that they could move the barge on Tuesday evening August 15th if the indemnity agreement they had proffered to Metro Parks could be signed. On Tuesday August 15th, Roy Wilson presented the “Indemnity Agreement” from Ingram to the attorney from the Metro Department of Law they normally work with, Tom Cross. On Tuesday August 15th, Tom Cross advised the Roy Wilson that Metro could not agree to Ingram’s Indemnity Agreement as Metro was constitutionally barred from signing such an indemnity agreement. James Gray advised that he believes he followed up with Tom Cross regarding the request after Tuesday, August 15th. It appears, however, that the initial request to have the barge moved on Monday, August 14th was not pursued after Wednesday August 16th. Nashville Homeless Power Project Homeless Organizing the Homeless & Working for Solutions 42 The Arcade, Nashville , Tennessee 37219 Office: (615) 733-0633 Cell: (615) 569-4740 info@homelesspower.org http://www.homelesspower.org
Tara Cole
8 years ago



Tara Cole."Glenn Dukes, Webber's public defender, pointed out that the police investigation showed no evidence the two men stole anything from Cole. But outside the courtroom, Howard Allen, co-founder of the Nashville Homeless Power Project, said they did take something from her. "They took her life," he said. "They took everything she had."- fair use, for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/krw2a




8 years ago



"Timothy Webber's parents, who would not give their first names, watch and listen as witnesses testify about the drowning of Tara Cole. (JOHN PARTIPILO / THE TENNESSEAN)"- fair use for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/krw2a




Terry Cummings, witness, testifies
8 years ago



"Terry Cummings tells the court he heard a splash, saw Tara Cole in the river and helped pull out a man who tried to rescue the homeless woman on Aug. 11. (JOHN PARTIPILO / THE TENNESSEAN)"- fair use for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/krw2a


8 years ago



Dares led to death, detective testifies. "Timothy Webber, 21, left, and Josh Dotts, 22, were charged with criminal homicide and aggravated assault in the death of Tara Cole. They are accused of pushing Cole into the Cumberland River. (JOHN PARTIPILO / THE TENNESSEAN)"- fair use for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/krw2a



Dares led to death, detective testifies
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/krw2a Thursday, 09/07/06 Dares led to death, detective testifies Suspects in Cole drowning bound to grand jury By AILENE TORRES Staff Writer Tara Cole's last words were a prayer. "Help me, God! Help me, God!" screamed the 32-year-old homeless woman moments after being pushed into the Cumberland River on Aug. 11, one witness said. During a preliminary hearing Wednesday for the two men accused of killing Cole — Timothy Webber, 21, and Josh Dotts, 22 — witnesses testified that the men dared each other to push Cole into the water. Earlier in the evening, Webber and Dotts had been drinking with friends at the Blue Moon bar in Lebanon when they decided to drive to Nashville to meet girls. But Webber, of Tribble Lane in Lebanon, suggested they instead "beat up homeless people in Nashville," Metro police detective Ricky Winfrey said. When the men arrived at Riverfront Park, they saw a sleeping homeless man, whom Webber allegedly urinated on and kicked, Winfrey testified. Both men were heard calling homeless people on the dock names and telling them to get jobs, he said. Later, Webber used a beer bottle to hit Jesse Masters, another homeless man who was sleeping on the dock, the detective said. About 30 minutes later, Webber and Dotts returned to the spot where Cole was sleeping. They were heard arguing about who would roll Cole into the river, Winfrey testified. "Josh Dotts did say that they stood there at the railing and dared each other," Winfrey said. In their statements to police, each man fingered the other as the one who rolled Cole into the water. When arrested at his home, Webber said that he wasn't going down for killing someone, Winfrey said. "He said he wasn't going to take a murder charge, and Josh Dotts was the one who dumped her in the river," Winfrey said. Police, however, believe Webber was the one who jumped over the railing and pushed Cole, Winfrey said. Others testified about trying to save Cole's life. Timothy Holder, 44, who also was sleeping on the dock, jumped in to save her, but Cole panicked and pushed him under, he said. "I tried to save Tara's life, (but) she grabbed hold of my arm and got around on my back," Holder said. "The current in the Cumberland … it was all I could do to get loose and get me out." Terry Cummings, another homeless man, said he heard the splash, saw Cole in the water and ran for help. Cummings was able to rescue Holder, but Cole had already gone under, he testified. Police officials searched the river, but Cole's body was stuck underneath a barge used for concerts and wasn't recovered for 10 days. The judge ruled that there was enough evidence to send the case to the grand jury, which could decide to indict. Dotts is being held in jail in lieu of bonds totaling $120,000. Webber is being held in jail in lieu of bonds totaling $195,000. Glenn Dukes, Webber's public defender, pointed out that the police investigation showed no evidence the two men stole anything from Cole. But outside the courtroom, Howard Allen, co-founder of the Nashville Homeless Power Project, said they did take something from her. "They took her life," he said. "They took everything she had." • *fair use*
Case of suspects in homeless woman killing sent to grand jury
8 years ago
http://tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060906/NEWS03/60906019 Case of suspects in homeless woman killing sent to grand jury STAFF REPORTS The case of two men suspected of pushing a homeless woman into the Cumberland River where she drowned was turned over to the Davidson County Grand Jury for possible indictment, a judge ruled Wednesday. Timothy Webber, 21, and Josh Dotts, 22, are charged in the death of Tara Cole, who was killed Aug. 11, after being pushed from the riverside dock where she had been sleeping. Both are being held in the Metro Jail. For more, read tomorrow’s Tennessean. *fair use* Men in Court for Drowning Homeless Woman http://www.newschannel5.com/content/news/21817.asp Posted: 9/6/2006 4:19:00 PM Updated: 9/6/2006 4:32:05 PM The two men accused of pushing a homeless woman to her death will now face a grand jury. Timothy Webber and Josh Dotts appeared in court Wednesday. A detective told the court that Timothy Webber admitted to police the two had dared each other to roll Tara Cole into the Cumberland River. The men were caught on downtown surveillance cameras just moments before the murder. Cole's body was later found under a barge at Riverfront Park. The court also heard from two homeless men, one who drove into river to rescue Cole. "I tried to save her life. She grabbed hold of my arm and I put her on my back and she pulled me under," Timothy Holder, who tried to rescue Cole, said. "Then I saw the other guy jumped in they were struggling. She was pulling one of the guys down that tried to help her. So at that time I ran up towards the 2nd Avenue to get help from a police officer," Eyewitness Terry Cummings said. Webber and Dotts were both charged with criminal homicide and aggravated assault for hitting another homeless man in the face with a bottle. If they make bond the judge stated the two will have to wear electronic ankle bracelets. *fair use*
Tara Cole's hopes, love stir family as they bid farewell
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/f56kd Sunday, 09/03/06 Tara Cole's hopes, love stir family as they bid farewell By MICHAELA JACKSON Staff Writer Carol Boyd's voice cracked as she touched a tissue to her eyes and then looked out at the somber crowd. "It's very touching what everyone has done … in Tara's memory," Boyd said. "We were just blessed to have her as part of our family. "It's difficult to deal with because we weren't afforded the opportunity to see her one last time. … I know Tara's looking down with that beautiful smile." Boyd spoke falteringly of her stepdaughter, Tara Cole, the 32-year-old homeless woman who drowned when two men allegedly rolled her off the dock where she was sleeping and into the Cumberland River on Aug. 11. About 80 people gathered at St. Ann's Episcopal Church on Saturday to mourn Cole's death. One after another, members of Cole's family took their places before the crowd and expressed their appreciation, as well as their heartfelt love for Cole. Cole's cousin Jerry Wardlow delivered the eulogy, holding back tears. "Hopefully, some good will come out of this," Wardlow said. "She wasn't someone you could just forget about, and I'm glad she is in a better place and she's not suffering anymore. "There's many Taras out there, and we want to help them. … Homeless people are people, too." Cole's father, Darryl Boyd, did not speak during the service, but after it was over he said that his daughter was not actually homeless because she had a family to come home to and money with which to support herself. "What Tara was doing was by choice," he said, adding that he had tried to persuade her not to stay on the streets, but Cole's mind was made up. "It's kind of hard to tell an adult child how to live their life," he said. "She wanted to live off the land." Carol Boyd also spoke after the service about the reason for Cole's condition, and the precarious nature of mental and physical well-being. "I hope this wakes up the city of Nashville to the problem of homelessness," she said. "Anybody can become homeless at any time, for many reasons. In Tara's case, she had an illness." The memorial service was organized by the Nashville Homeless Power Project in tandem with a memorial service taking place on the same day in Cole's hometown of Elgin, Ill. "(This service is important) not only to commemorate this young lady but also to bring a higher awareness to the community that homeless people are so highly at risk for violent crime in many forms," said Amy Denton, secretary for NHPP. "It seems to be a growing trend for some people to perpetrate crime on homeless people because they are basically defenseless." • *fair use*
City suspends K-9 unit that criticized search
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/lfv3l Thursday, 08/31/06 City suspends K-9 unit that criticized search Proficiency doubted; leader claims reprisal By TRAVIS LOLLER Staff Writer A volunteer who last week criticized the handling of the search for a homeless woman who drowned in the Cumberland River has been suspended, along with the team she leads, until its performance can be evaluated by an independent specialist. On Wednesday, K-9 unit leader Nikki Ivey said she thought the suspension was retaliation for a letter she wrote to Vice Mayor Howard Gentry, criticizing Mayor's Office of Emergency Management officials. OEM interim director Kevin Penney said Ivey's team was being evaluated simply because of a sub-par performance. "This component of our program does not meet the necessary levels of proficiency required," he said Wednesday. Ivey established the volunteer K-9 search and rescue program for OEM four years ago. She wrote its protocols and certifications, which were approved by the agency. She questions why she was never asked to revise them, if there was dissatisfaction with the way her team operated. "We've had 26 call-outs this year alone," she said. "If we're not qualified, why did they continue to call us?" A 10-day search earlier this month for the body of Tara Cole, a homeless woman who witnesses said was pushed into the river as she slept on a dock, brought criticism from the homeless community and its advocates, who thought the body should have been recovered sooner. Search efforts initially focused on a Riverfront Park barge tied to the shore near the place where Cole was last seen, but then expanded down the river. Her body eventually was recovered from under the barge after its location was indicated by specially trained dogs from Memphis that were accustomed to searches on the Mississippi River. Shortly after the recovery, Ivey wrote to Gentry saying that her dog, Tbaa, had pinpointed the body under the barge twice, before the outside K-9 team was brought in. "Tara Cole should have been recovered within 15 hours of her reported drowning," Ivey wrote. "This would have allowed the family, at the very least, an open casket service." Penney has disputed Ivey's claim, saying that the difference between the local team and outside K-9 team was like night and day and made him realize that the OEM team needed to be evaluated as soon as possible. Penney said he did not want to give the impression that the agency does not appreciate its volunteers. "We welcome anyone willing to put in the time and effort to become fully qualified," he said. The independent evaluation will let management know where the K-9 unit's weaknesses lie, he said, so the program can be improved. While denying that the move was retaliation, Penney did say that Ivey did not use the proper chain of command for her grievance. Ivey said she wrote to Gentry after a call to an OEM official went unreturned, but that she never expected the letter to become public. "I want them to take this seriously and change the way they respond to emergencies — trust in their volunteers," she said. Fire Department Chief Stephen Halford, who is overseeing OEM until it gets a permanent director, gathered the agency's management on Tuesday and reviewed the efforts to recover Cole's body. On Wednesday he said in an e-mail to The Tennessean that "it appears that OEM personnel and volunteers executed their duties in a timely, safe and professional fashion." He expects to complete a written evaluation in the next two weeks, he said. Whether or not Ivey eventually is welcomed back by OEM, she said she would be able to continue her volunteer work. In January, she formed an independent K-9 search organization that is seeking nonprofit status: the Tennessee Emergency Rescue and Recovery Association. • *fair use*
8 years ago
This is so creepy!!!!!!!!!!!! People and their lost of their humanity!!!!!!!!!!!!!
8 years ago
Harmony, man's inhumanity to man never astounds me. I am ashamed to even read something as horrible as this story. It is just so devastating to read. I pray justice prevails! And people should be organizing all sorts of marches about this....
Lafayette Man Charged In Homeless Woman's Death
8 years ago
http://www.maconcountytimes.com/articles/2006/08/30/news/newsb.txt Lafayette Man Charged In Homeless Woman's Death By Linda Worsham Josh Dotts, 22, of Lafayette, and Timothy Webber, 21, of Lebanon , were arrested Thursday, August 24, by Metro Nashville Police, and charged with criminal homicide for the death of Tara Cole, 32, a sleeping homeless woman who drowned after she was rolled into the Cumberland River , on August 11. Dotts and Webber were also charged with aggravated assault for striking Jessie Masters, 26, a homeless man, in the face with a bottle. Dotts is believed to be the one who struck Masters, and Webber is believed to be the one who pushed Cole into the river, according to a Metro Nashville Police Department media release. Information that Josh Dotts had been arrested later on August 11, in Lafayette, and charged with DUI, just 18 hours after the alleged attack on Jessie Masters and the death of Tara Cole, came to light with the breaking news of the Nashville arrests on August 24. Dotts was squealing his tires and speeding, according to LPD Sergeant Ray Amalfitano, who pulled the vehicle over in the Krystal parking lot, at about 9:30 p.m. on August 11. Timothy Webber was a passenger in the vehicle driven by Dotts that night, but he was not charged with a violation, according to Sgt. Amalfitano. “I called for back-up when I observed both suspects acting extremely nervous. I searched the vehicle and didn't find any weapons, just a bottle of liquor,” Sgt. Amalfitano said. “Dotts was swaying and staggering. I administered three field sobriety tests and he couldn't execute any of them. He registered .19 on the breath test and .08 is the limit, so I arrested him,” the sergeant explained. The big break in the case of the assault on Jessie Masters and the drowning death of Tara Cole came when a person with knowledge about the murder contacted police after seeing downtown surveillance video on TV, according to Nashville police reports. Two friends, who traveled to Nashville with Dotts and Webber, and are considered witnesses, were reported to have told police the men went downtown with plans to rough up people sleeping on the streets near Riverfront Park . “When they came to Nashville, two wanted to see some girls and two wanted to get rowdy,” said Nashville Detective Ricky Winfrey. The four men became separated during a foot chase after Dotts allegedly struck Masters. Two of the men returned to the car, but Dotts and Webber went back into the park, according to witnesses. Several other homeless people in the area went in the water after Cole, but were unable to save her from drowning. The incident happened at about 3:00 a.m. on August 11. Dotts and Webber went to Nashville on the night of the murder to harass and assault the homeless, Detective Ricky Winfrey and the other Nashville investigators concluded. Josh Dotts was a 2002 graduate of MCHS. Other than occasionally breaking school rules, he was not involved in any serious trouble, according to school board officials. Timothy Webber has been arrested at least three times, previously. Charges include car theft, possession, public intoxication, and resisting arrest, according to Lebanon police. Dotts has had a few citations, but no prior arrests in Lafayette , according to LPD records. Tara Denise Cole's death has called attention to the plight of Nashville 's homeless community. A nightly vigil was held in Nashville , until Cole's body was found under a barge used for concerts on the river, more than ten days after she drowned. Cole was living as a homeless person, but she was not without a home, according to her family members who reported they have not seen her for three years, and thought she was living in a shelter. Cole began showing signs of bipolar disorder in her early 20s, and she often stopped taking her medication, according to her family. She was shy, and often slept on the pier, and Cole had an active bank account, according to reports from the Tennessean. “The actions of these two men are sickening. I am greatly disturbed that they chose to travel into our downtown area from other counties to bully the homeless,” Metro Police Chief Ronal Serpas said in a media release. Dotts and Webber were held in the Metro Nashville jail, pending a preliminary hearing of the charges against them. *fair use*
8 years ago
"Howard Allen, who has served as an organizer with the Nashville Homeless Power Project, called Cole's killers "real weapons of mass destruction" and said he was at a loss for words to describe his feelings about the arrests. "She was asleep and had no chance to ask God for help," Allen said. "All she had time to do was scream … But she is home now, she's got a neighbor in God, and there are plenty of Taras still sleeping on these streets." Harmony- I, too, am at a loss for words. This is really getting to me- that two jerks can go out, get drunk, decide to "harass" the homeless, and snuff out an innocent life of a woman who was doing the best she could and just trying to get some sleep... their mindset (who knows what it really was- I can only speculate) may have been that homeless people are less than human, but these mens' brutal actions only reveal their appalling lack of humanity.
8 years ago



"Howard Allen, back, Bobby Wayne Elliot, center, and Ann Denton, front, support one another after a night court hearing for two suspects arrested in connection with the death of Tara Cole. (ALAN POIZNER / THE TENNESSEAN)"- fair use for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/p8jvo



2 suspects arrested in homeless death
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/p8jvo Friday, 08/25/06 2 suspects arrested in homeless death Men were drunk, looking for trouble, police say By KATE HOWARD Staff Writer When two murder suspects went downtown to Second Avenue two weeks ago, Metro police said Thursday, they were drunk and intent on harassing the city's homeless. Timothy Webber, 21, of Tribble Lane in Lebanon and Josh Dotts, 22, of Smalling Road in Lafayette were arrested Thursday in the death of Tara Cole, 32, a homeless woman who drowned Aug. 11 after she was pushed into the Cumberland River as she slept. Metro police detectives said Webber and Dotts were looking for trouble that night. Statements that their friends gave to police indicated that they came downtown with plans to rough up the people who spend their nights sleeping on downtown streets. The other two men whom Webber and Dotts were with are considered witnesses and haven't been charged, police said. Dotts and Webber were charged Thursday with criminal homicide in Cole's death and with aggravated assault on a homeless man who was hit in the face earlier that night. "When they came to Nashville, two wanted to see some girls and two wanted to get rowdy," said Detective Ricky Winfrey. Both men were held at Metro Jail pending a court hearing. Police said that Webber, Dotts and their two friends were captured by surveillance videos along Second Avenue. They matched the descriptions that witnesses had given to police of the men who pushed Cole. The surveillance videos were given to the media, and three of the men contacted police after seeing themselves on TV, Winfrey said. According to the statements that police said the men gave, the four men were separated during a foot chase after Dotts struck Jessie Masters, 26, in the face with a bottle at Riverfront Park. They all started to go back to the car, police said, but Dotts and Webber went back into the park at some point and saw Cole lying there. Police believe Webber was the person who jumped the pier's railing about 3 a.m. and pushed the sleeping woman into the river. Some other homeless people in the area jumped in after Cole but were unable to save her, police said. Lebanon police said Webber had been arrested there at least three times. In April 2004, he was arrested on a car-theft charge. On Christmas Eve that year, Webber's girlfriend told police that he struck her in the face with his fist during a fight. Last June, Webber and another man were spotted urinating on a Lebanon police patrol car. He was charged with possession and transportation of liquor while under 21, public intoxication and resisting arrest, police said. Cole's stepmother, Carol Boyd, said by phone Thursday evening that she was looking forward to seeing justice served. The arrests "definitely help," Boyd said. "I don't know if any of us will ever, ever understand the mentality" of whoever killed Cole "and what they were thinking or why they did this to her …" but that news of Thursday's arrests "definitely does help with some closure." Members of Cole's family have said that, although Cole was living as a homeless person, she was not without a home. Her mother lives in Illinois, and her father and stepmother live in Indiana. They last saw her about three years ago, and they all thought she was living in a shelter. Cole began showing signs of bipolar disorder in her early 20s, according to family, and she often stopped taking her medication. She was known in the downtown area as quiet and shy, and she often slept on the pier. Police said she had an active bank account in town. Seeing the two suspects on a video screen during their booking at the police department's headquarters Thursday afternoon left Ann Denton, an organizer with the Nashville Homeless Power Project, with mixed emotions. Sickened. Horrified. Prayerful. The arrests are "a relief, but this is just the tip of the iceberg," Denton said. The death has called more attention to the homeless community, she said, and the need for more housing is tragically obvious. Denton participated in vigils held nightly until Cole's body was recovered by divers from beneath a barge used for concerts, more than 10 days after she drowned. Howard Allen, who has served as an organizer with the Nashville Homeless Power Project, called Cole's killers "real weapons of mass destruction" and said he was at a loss for words to describe his feelings about the arrests. "She was asleep and had no chance to ask God for help," Allen said. "All she had time to do was scream … But she is home now, she's got a neighbor in God, and there are plenty of Taras still sleeping on these streets." *fair use*
Two arrested in killing of homeless woman
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/m8pvl Thursday, 08/24/06 Two arrested in killing of homeless woman Metro police have arrested two men in connection with the Aug. 11 murder of Tara Cole, a homeless woman who was pushed into the Cumberland while she slept on a dock in Riverfront Park. Timothy S. Webber, 21, of Lebanon and Josh S. Dotts, 22, of Lafayette are both in custody, and each has been charged with criminal homicide. The two had come to Nashville that night with specific intent to assault and harass homeless people, police spokesman Don Aaron said in a press release. “The actions of these two men are sickening,” Chief Ronal Serpas said. “I am greatly disturbed that they chose to travel into our downtown area from other counties to bully the homeless.” “Detective Ricky Winfrey and his fellow investigators at the Central Precinct were determined to identify the persons responsible for Tara Cole’s death. I am very proud of their efforts and dedication,” Serpas said. Cole’s body was recovered from underneath a barge that supports the Riverfront concert stage Tuesday. Police believe it was Webber who physically pushed Cole to her death. Both men also face charges of aggravated assault in another incident. They are accused of striking a homeless man, Jessie Masters, 26, in the face with a beer bottle earlier in the evening. - IAN KRIEGISH *fair use*
Timothy Webber, 21, of Lebanon, and Josh Dotts, 22, of Lafayette
8 years ago



"Metro police have arrested two men in the murder of Tara Cole, the homeless woman who was pushed into the Cumberland River. Timothy Webber, 21, of Lebanon, and Josh Dotts, 22, of Lafayette, were charged with rolling Cole into the river as she slept." fair use for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/hazs2



Arrests Made In Homeless Murder
8 years ago
http://www.newschannel5.com/content/news/21589.asp Arrests Made In Homeless Murder Posted: 8/24/2006 5:49:00 PM Updated: 8/24/2006 10:44:08 PM Metro police have arrested two men in the murder of Tara Cole, the homeless woman who was pushed into the Cumberland River. Timothy Webber, 21, of Lebanon, and Josh Dotts, 22, of Lafayette, were charged with rolling Cole into the river as she slept. According to Metro Detective Ricky Winfrey, the two men were drinking in Lebanon with two other men. The four decided to drive into Nashville, where they split up. Dott and Webber planned to harass the homeless, and the other planned to meet girls. Webber snuck up on Cole, and rolled her into the water. Dotts assaulted another homeless person, Jesse Masters, with a bottle. The two were booked in night court, and charged with criminal homicide. They were also charged with aggravated assault for hitting Masters with a bottle *fair use*
Police cite 'significant break' in drowning of homeless woman
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/f52vm Thursday, 08/24/06 Police cite 'significant break' in drowning of homeless woman Investigators are "significantly" closer to solving the murder of Tara Cole, a well-loved homeless woman who was pushed into the Cumberland River as she slept at Riverfront Park Aug. 11, Metro police said. “Early today several persons were interviewed. We are working diligently to resolve this case as quickly as possible and I believe it will be resolved in the very near future,” department spokesman Don Aaron said, adding that arrests could come as early as today. Police have been examining video surveillance tapes from cameras in Riverfront Park and along First Avenue. From those tapes, police have identified two men who fit the descriptions they were given by witnesses, swaggering along First Avenue just before Cole was drowned in the Cumberland River. Aaron said that as a result of the public broadcast of those images, “the police department late Wednesday received a very significant break in this murder case.” -IAN KRIEGISH *fair use*
Police Have Suspects in Homeless Murder
8 years ago
http://www.newschannel5.com/content/news/21540.asp Police Have Suspects in Homeless Murder Posted: 8/22/2006 4:12:00 PM Updated: 8/22/2006 5:08:06 PM Metro Police said they have four suspects on video tape in the murder of Tara Cole, the homeless woman who was pushed into the Cumberland River and drowned. The video was from a Metro security camera at 2nd Avenue and Broadway on August 11 at 3:00 in the morning. The video is in black and white, and the quality is poor, but shows four people crossing 2nd Avenue and walking toward Riverfront Park. Police said one man was wearing camouflage pants and a black tank top. They said earlier in the evening they were making cat calls at girls in Printer's Alley. Police believe these young men were responsible for Cole's death. “We think that it's pranking gone bad. These are four young male whites. They're down here. The video shows them being somewhat aggressive, more than the normal crowd around them,” Rickey Winfrey of the Metro Police Department said. Homeless people on the Riverfront were surprised to hear the latest development. They believed all along that it was a homeless on homeless crime. “I've heard the story over and over two guys did it not four,” one homeless man said. “And they did it and it turned out worse than what they really wanted it to do.” Search crews found a body Monday night under a barge that is used for concerts at Riverfront Park. Forensic tests will confirm whether the body is that of Tara Cole. If you have information that can help Metro Police please call Detective Ricky Winfrey at 862-7067. *fair use*
Body may be that of homeless woman
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/hxbz5 Tuesday, 08/22/06 Body may be that of homeless woman Concert barge was moved to let divers search underneath By KATE HOWARD Staff Writer Divers on Monday night recovered a body they believe to be Tara Cole, a woman police say was pushed by two men into the Cumberland River while she slept 11 days ago. The body was found by divers about 7 p.m. under a barge used for concerts at Riverfront Park. Police believed past efforts to find her body had failed because her body was stuck underneath the barge, so the barge was moved Monday evening up the river in hopes of loosening the debris. The 32-year-old woman lived on Nashville's streets and often slept on a boat dock at Riverfront Park. On her last night there, witnesses told police two men pushed her into the river for no apparent reason, and she drowned, despite the efforts of two friends to save her. Police haven't identified any suspects in the case, but Metro police spokeswoman Amanda Sluss said police are gathering surveillance tapes from local businesses to try to find out where the men had spent the evening. Carol Boyd, Cole's stepmother, said from Indiana that she is thankful Cole's body may have been recovered, but said she and Cole's family are still far from a sense of closure. "I don't think we'll ever have closure until we find out who did this to her," Boyd said. She, Cole's father and her mother traveled to Nashville last weekend to meet with police and some of Cole's friends. The experience was surreal, she said, because they knew Cole was probably still in the water. "We're relieved if it is her, we can finally put her to rest now," Boyd said. "On the other hand, we're deeply saddened that it's a reality now. … There was always that hope, maybe, that there was a slim chance that it wasn't true." Boyd knew when she saw the photo homeless advocates passed out at candlelight vigils that the woman leaning against the wall with a hat pulled over her eyes was her stepdaughter. She remembers Cole as a beautiful, bright young woman full of dreams before she began showing signs of bipolar disorder in her early 20s. Boyd said Cole's family has spent the past decade trying to keep Tara in treatment programs and on medication. "We've been trying so hard to get her better, but the bottom line is, she just wouldn't stay on her medicine," Boyd said. The illness led Cole to live a life of homelessness, Boyd said, but she had many places she could have gone. That fact makes the way Cole died even more difficult to take, she said. "That someone could actually just throw someone into a river like that. … They must have felt like her life didn't mean anything," Boyd said. "Little did they know she had a huge, huge family that loved her and cared about her very much." Four boats owned by the Mayor's Office of Emergency Management and the Sumner County Emergency Management Agency patrolled the river, with a cadaver dog and divers from the Hendersonville Fire Department. The Ingram Barge company moved the concert stage about 6 p.m. The body was found just after 7 p.m. As the boats in the water gathered together in the river near the Woodland Street Bridge, alongside the barge's temporary location, about a dozen of Cole's friends and homeless advocates silently walked up and down the grass at Riverfront Park, holding candles and continuing the vigil they've held nightly since her death. When it became clear that the divers had found something, the group gathered to join hands, end their vigils and pray for Cole. "I've had so many calls about this and no answers," said John Zirker of the Nashville Homeless Power Project. "We need to get this behind us. … I keep praying for housing for the folks who are ready to come up off these streets." • *fair use*
Dixie, yes..
8 years ago
I am sad that the world is the poorer without Tara Cole.. more than anything right now I am feeling angry... outraged... this just keeps going on..and on... this "ten year plan to end homelessness" is a vile, hypocritcal joke. I'm convinced the government's cynical enough to just mean that, by the end of ten years, they hope that all homeless people will be dead- from the elements, from hate crimes, from disease, from malnutrition... of course, the government has all the money it needs to fund illegal wars.. meanwhile it cuts funds to homelessness-related programs...
This Hateful World
8 years ago

... how horribly sad ~ I just don't have words to respond...

like when you grit your teeth then want plant one on the jerk who did "it"...

whoa ~ wish I could, just really wish I could... then I would have to go after all the KKK and other hate groups ~ one of these days...

Humans who direct their hate toward homeless on whatever level are filthy~ even if they jump out of a mercedes to poke fun or demeaning waste at a homeless ...

"THEY" must be better humans or something??

so now this looks like a double hate crime to me-
8 years ago
a crime against homeless, and a racial hate crime...
Tara Cole
8 years ago


"Tara Cole, pushed into the river and presumed drowned, had bipolar disorder, her family says."- fair use for humanitarian purposes http://tinyurl.com/g3x2e



Homeless woman was loved but lost, kin say
8 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/gd8jr Saturday, 08/19/06 Homeless woman was loved but lost, kin say Family wants public to know Tara's story By TRAVIS LOLLER Staff Writer Pearl Cole remembers the last time she spoke to her daughter. Tara Cole had bipolar disorder and would disappear sometimes without a trace. She had been out of touch and living on the streets of Nashville, but she called her mother three weeks ago to tell her she wanted to come home to Elgin, Ill. "She was supposed to call me back because I was on the way to work and we were making arrangements for her to get treatment," Pearl Cole said, "but she never called back." Then, on Tuesday she got a call from the Metro Police Department, informing her that Tara Cole, 33, might have drowned. Soon she learned more. On Aug. 11, as Cole was sleeping in her usual spot on a Riverfront Park dock, two men sneaked up to her, quickly rolled her into the water of the Cumberland River and ran away. Two other men staying on the dock dived into the river after her, but were unable to pull her from the swift current. The last anyone saw of her, she was being swept toward the prow of a nearby barge that was tied to the shore. Her body has not been found. In the days after the attack, very little could be discovered about the woman. Friends on the street knew her as Tyra. They described her as sweet and so quiet that she hardly ever talked. But Cole had a family who loved her and wants the world to know her story. "I just want people to know that Tara had goals and a vision and wanted to make something out of herself," Pearl Cole said. "The only reason she wasn't able to accomplish that was because of her illness." "She suffered from a mental illness," her stepmother. Carol Boyd, said. "She was bipolar and would not stay on her meds." Boyd and Pearl Cole drove to Nashville on Friday from Indiana and Illinois with Tara Cole's father and stepfather, a brother and other members of her extended family. They attended a vigil that homeless advocates are holding nightly until Cole's body is recovered. "She was living a homeless life, but she wasn't homeless," Boyd said, noting that her family wanted to provide care for her. "Her illness just wouldn't allow her to make good choices," Pearl Cole said. As a child, "she was always happy-go-lucky," said stepfather Dewitt Cole. "She always had a smile on her face." Her family first knew that something was seriously wrong when Cole was about 20 and they got a call from Colorado police who said she was behaving strangely. She wouldn't stay on her medications because she didn't think she needed them, her mother said. When she came to Nashville about three years ago, it took her mother six months and a private detective to find her. Police have not found Cole's assailants and do not know why anyone would want to harm her. Police Cmdr. Andy Garrett, who recognized Cole from street patrols, has said the crime seemed to be without motive. Random violence is something that many homeless people say they have learned to live with, but recently it has become a form of entertainment for some. In a series of videos available over the Internet called Bumfights, video makers pay homeless people to fight each other and hurt themselves, said Michael Stoops, executive director of the National Coalition for the Homeless in Washington, D.C. The videos also show teenagers hurting the homeless — for example, taping them with duct tape and hosing them down with water. "Last year in Los Angeles, some suburban teens … watched Bumfights and then went out with baseball bats and beat up people sleeping on the streets," Stoops said. "People who come across Bumfights on their computers, 99.9 percent are not going to go out and hurt people," he said, "but the videos give the idea that the homeless are the new despised community. No one cares what you do to them and you can get away with it." Leonard Woodrum, a truck driver for The Tennessean, saw a car stop next to a homeless man on Grundy Street around 2:30 a.m. Wednesday. The passenger, whom Woodrum described as a young, white man, got out of the car and pulled an orange construction cone from the car. "(He) threw it at the homeless man like he was throwing a baseball," Woodrum said. "The driver, I think he had a camera phone," he said, "because I saw a flash when the guy threw the cone, so I think they were taking pictures." "The homeless man said it didn't hurt him," Woodrum said, "but no one deserves that." Many people have said the same of Cole since she was attacked. "We were always afraid something terrible would happen to her because we were not able to keep her well," said Boyd, "but I never, never expected to hear that someone would pick her up and throw her in the river." "She was very bright and accomplished," Boyd said. "She would have been able to do anything." • Enlarge Tara Cole, pushed into the river and presumed drowned, had bipolar disorder, her family says. RELATED ELEMENTS # Aug. 17, 2006: Body in river not that of homeless woman # Aug. 16, 2006: Homeless advocates: Too little done to find body # Aug. 15, 2006: Friends, neighbors from streets mourn woman pushed into river # Aug. 12, 2006: Men push homeless woman into river RELATED ARTICLES # Ending homelessness VIOLENCE AGAINST THE HOMELESS Homeless men and women say they are often victims of random violence that does not make the news and sometimes is not even reported. In the past few years, at least two other violent crimes against the homeless in Nashville received wide publicity. • In January 2003, Albert Blanchard was sleeping on Broadway when Eric Erwin and two friends walked by. Erwin threw a lighted match onto Blanchard and the three ran away. Blanchard caught fire and suffered second- and third-degree burns to his arms and abdomen. He spent more than six months in the hospital. fair use
Vigil to be held tonight for homeless murder victim
9 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/efgmx Monday, 08/14/06 Vigil to be held tonight for homeless murder victim By LEE ANN O'NEAL Staff Writer A homeless woman believed to have drowned after being pushed into the Cumberland River early Friday will be remembered at 8 p.m. tonight at a vigil at Riverfront Park. The woman, known only by a first name, Tyra, was shoved into the river about 3:30 a.m. Friday, a witness reported. Witness Jesse Masters said he saw two men shove the woman into the river, then run off. Masters said he and another man tried but were unable to save the woman. Police have not officially identified the victim. *fair use*
Homeless advocates: Too little done to find body
9 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/s3v4y Wednesday, 08/16/06 Homeless advocates: Too little done to find body Debris in river after rains adds danger, Metro official says By TRAVIS LOLLER Staff Writer and LEE ANN O'NEAL Staff Writer As the search continues for the body of a homeless woman pushed into the Cumberland River, some homeless advocates say the effort is not sufficient. Two men pushed Tyra Cole from a Riverfront Park dock, where she was sleeping, into the Cumberland River early Friday morning, witnesses have said. The Mayor's Office of Emergency Management is coordinating a search for the body. But the recent heavy rains have pushed a lot of debris in the river, emergency coordinator Scott Harris said, making it difficult to use sonar and dangerous to use divers. That explanation has frustrated people such as the Rev. Charles Strobel, a Catholic priest who founded the Campus for Human Development, a homeless-services agency. "As dangerous as it may be, if it were another citizen in this community, not a homeless person, I think efforts would still be made to find the body," Strobel said. "Can we imagine any other drowning tragedy in the city that would not have a constant search going on?" Harris said the extended search time is nothing unusual. "I've spent 17 days on that river before, looking for people who drowned," he said. "We're following the procedures we do every search." Twice a day, boats are searching debris piles downstream of where Cole was last seen. To keep the pressure on searchers, Howard Allen has organized a 7 o'clock vigil each night at Riverfront Park until Cole's body is found. Allen has been homeless and recently founded the nonprofit Humanities Caregivers Project to address issues that affect the homeless. "I'm not going to let it die," Allen said. "We count, too, and we die, just like everybody else." • *fair use*
Homeless Woman Dead After Drowning Attack
9 years ago
http://www.newschannel5.com/content/news/21338.asp Homeless Woman Dead After Drowning Attack Posted: 8/11/2006 11:36:00 AM Updated: 8/12/2006 9:11:17 AM A Thursday night attack has left a young homeless woman dead, and now police are searching for her killers. Police said two men pushed her into the Cumberland River while she was sleeping in the Riverfront Park downtown. According to police, the woman was homeless and she usually slept out in the open at Riverfront Park because she felt safe there. Several witnesses told police that two men walked up and rolled her into the Cumberland River. Some of the witnesses said the men were homeless as well. Other witnesses said they never saw the two men before. Tim Holder, who is also living on the streets, was one of the people to see it happen. He said the men threw a bottle at him after they pushed the woman into the water. He jumped in to try to save the woman but he told police the current was too strong. "There was nothing I could do, she was about to drown me," Holder said. Police boats have begun combing the river. Police believe that the body may have gone underneath the Riverfront Stage. They have not been able to identify her, although Holder said that she goes by Tasha on the streets. “They need to get what’s coming to them and I hope the law finds them,” Holder said. Police believe the girl drowned, and they are treating the case as a homicide. “To throw a person into a swift river, I mean in a conscious effort to pick her up and toss her in the water, I don't see how you couldn't expect someone to die,” Roy Dunaway of Metro Police said. They have not searched with divers because of the weather. They felt the current would be dangerous for divers, but dispatched dogs to aid in the search. As of Saturday morning, Metro Police still have not found the two suspects nor have they learned the identity of the victim. If you have any information on this case, please call Metro Police *fair use*
Tara Cole
9 years ago
http://tinyurl.com/g3x2e Saturday, 08/12/06 Men push homeless woman into river She slept on dock; body not found By TRAVIS LOLLER Staff Writer She was petite, young and extremely shy. She wore a ski cap and jacket even in the heat of summer. One man who knew her said she "wouldn't hurt a tick on a dog." But around 3:30 a.m. Friday, seemingly for no reason, two men rolled her off the edge of a dock at Riverfront Park where she had been sleeping. More than 12 hours later, her body had not been found. Jesse Masters said he was sitting on a bench on the dock when he saw two men jump over a railing near the river's edge, where the woman often slept. They shoved her and ran off. "I heard someone say, 'She's in the water,' " he said. "I had to decide whether to go chase those guys or go get her." Masters said he was one of two people who jumped into the water to try to save the woman. The first man reached her, but she pulled him down. He was drowning and had to push her away. Then Masters reached her, but the same thing happened to him. "I tried to grab her by the wrist to drag her along, but I was fighting against the current," he said. "I was drowning myself. If it hadn't been for two big guys who pulled me out of the river, I would have drowned." Masters and another witness, Terry Cummings, said they recognized the two assailants because the men had been on the dock earlier that evening and hit Masters in the face with a beer bottle. Advocates say the homeless are often targeted for attacks. In 2003 a man sleeping on the sidewalk near Third Avenue and Broadway was set on fire. The following year, a pizza delivery driver injured a homeless man who frequented Gallatin Pike when he plowed into the man's shopping cart with his truck because the man was "lollygagging in the road." Several people who knew the victim of this most recent attack were at Riverfront Park on Friday afternoon. They described a person who hardly ever talked. Even someone who considered her a good friend did not know her last name or where she was from. Two people said she was called Tyra. "I remember that because, when she told me, I said, 'Oh, like Tyra Banks,' and she laughed," said Bobby Elliott. "I think that was the only time I ever saw her smile." Asked whether they were worried about more attacks, several homeless men at the park said they just wanted to get their hands on the two men. But one homeless woman, who did not want to give her name, said the attack did make her worry for her safety. The Metro Fire Department water rescue team searched the river for several hours overnight, according to a police statement, and the Mayor's Office of Emergency Management took over the search in the morning. Emergency coordinator Scott Harris said he thinks the woman's body may be under a barge that serves as a concert stage and is tied up next to the dock where she slept. There is so much debris under the barge, he said, it would be dangerous to send in divers. Instead, emergency workers were trying to pull the debris out and using sonar to search for the body on Friday. Police have not yet identified the victim. Metro Police Cmdr. Andy Garrett said she was someone he would see on the street and speak to regularly, but she never spoke back. She only nodded. That someone would want to hurt her "makes you sick to your stomach," he said. Police will not treat the case lightly just because the woman was homeless, he said, noting that four detectives have been assigned to the case. But on Friday afternoon during a break in the recovery efforts and with no police in sight, Cummings surveyed the place in the river where the woman was last seen and said, "If she'd been a white woman from Brentwood, every policeman in the county would be here." Anyone with information on the crime should call the police at 862-7044 or Crime Stoppers at 74-CRIME. • *fair use*