Restraining order still in place

By By Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
Feb. 15, 2001
Chancery Court Judge Jerry Mason on Wednesday continued a restraining order issued Feb. 5 against an Amtrak conductor who allegedly made threats against the lives of Meridian Mayor John Robert Smith and other Amtrak officials.
Shawn Charles Knowles told Mason he has not had sufficient time to secure legal counsel since he was served with a summons on Tuesday, the day before he was scheduled to appear for an injunction hearing.
Mason issued a temporary restraining order against Knowles after Amtrak filed a complaint stating Knowles told an Amtrak employee "I will call some people and take … John Robert Smith out."
Although court records reflect Knowles has a Meridian address at 2701 Willow Bend Drive, Apt. 2005, Knowles said he has not lived in Meridian since 1982. He currently resides in Georgia, he said.
Knowles asked Mason to dismiss the restraining order so that he can contact two union members for counsel.
Mason refused to dismiss the restraining order, but granted Knowles permission to contact Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers chairman Ray Longhauser and vice-chair Thomas Kelly.
Meridian Police Chief Gregg Lewis said criminal charges are possible. FBI agents were contacted Jan. 29, the night of the alleged threats and the agencies involved are investigating the threats, he said.
The complaint said Knowles made the threats because of a disciplinary hearing scheduled for Feb. 28 in which Knowles said he believes Amtrak officials have instructed other Amtrak employees to lie.
The Amtrak complaint states Knowles allegedly made threatening statements regarding Mayor Smith, Gulf Coast General Manager Deborah Wetter, Assistant General Manager of "The City of New Orleans" Dave White and John T. Eldridge, service manager for The Crescent line.
Mason's order prohibits Knowles from threatening, cursing, coercing, intimidating, insulting or doing bodily harm or threatening to do bodily harm, hindering, harassing or injuring anyone associated with Amtrak.
He is also not allowed to contact Smith or any other person listed in the complaint.
Knowles' injunction hearing is scheduled for Feb. 23 in Lauderdale County Chancery Court.
Marianne Todd is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. E-mail her at mtodd@themeridianstar.com.

Franklin County

PROGRESS 2024: Veteran Spotlight – Tony Chard

News

Car show benefit helps raise needed funds

News

Russellville High School varsity cheerleaders attend UCA cheer camp

Franklin County

NWSCC receives $18,000 in grants from Dollar General Literacy Foundation

News

Russellville equine therapy visits library program

News

Steam locomotive delivery to Red Bay delayed, arrives July 1

News

Local author holds book signing at RPL

Franklin County

Former Russellville resident performs ‘Miracle Worker’

News

Presenting: Miss Phil Campbell

Franklin County

All American Tang Soo Do students recognized

News

Russellville High School students sign to pursue fine arts careers

Franklin County

Football Funday, special needs probowl take place June 15

Galleries

PHOTOS: RMS students take the stage for spring sing

News

Russellville member named among finalists for GFWC Jennie Award

East Franklin

East Franklin Junior High celebrates May 21 graduation

Belgreen

Belgreen Class of 2024 celebrates graduation

Franklin County

Local churches plan Vacation Bible School programs

Galleries

PHOTOS: Tharptown High School Wildcats graduate

Galleries

PHOTOS: Phil Campbell High School students graduate

Franklin County

NEMCC announces more than 400 to spring vice president’s list

Franklin County

UNA releases spring dean’s, president’s lists

News

Roxy holds June 15 concert, plans other events

Franklin County

Free summer meal program available at Franklin County Schools

News

PHOTOS: Red Bay High School graduates celebrate

x