Man Charged In Death Of 3-Year-Old Girl Claims She Fell Down Motel Stairs

Tuesday, December 5, 2017
Rhasean Lowry
Rhasean Lowry

A man charged in the death of a three-year-old girl claims she died from a fall down the stairs at the Econo Lodge at Bonny Oaks Drive and Lee Highway.

However, prosecutor Lance Pope told a Criminal Court jury that Rhasean Lowry made up the story to cover his own attack Aug. 26, 2014, on Tatiana Emerson, his girlfriend's daughter.

Dr. Bryan Vance, a Parkridge emergency room physician, was asked if he thought the girl died from a fall. He replied, "It did not appear to be a fall. It looked like she had been assaulted to me."

Dr. Vance said he happened to be standing near the front of the emergency room talking with a security guard when Lowry came in and said he needed help with someone in his car who was injured.

Dr. Vance said he volunteered to go help, saying, "It was kind of slow. I was not doing anything and the nurses were busy."

He said when he went out in the parking lot Lowry motioned him to his car. It was then he saw the motionless child in the back seat with a sippy cup in her lap.

The witness said she was "staring forward with a blank stare. She was very pale with a gray appearance. I knew she was in distress."

He added, "She looked dead to me at the time."

Dr. Vance said he put one hand to her chest and the other to her neck, but was unable to get either a pulse or a breath.

He said he then sprinted into the hospital while cradling the little girl in his arms. He said, "I thought to myself, Oh, my God, I've got a dead child in my arms."

He said, "I ran probably the fastest I have in my life."

Dr. Vance said he and a team of nurses worked on Tatiana for about 20 minutes and finally got a pulse after shocking her. He said she was then rushed to Children's Hospital for more intensive care.

He said Lowry came into the room soon after the child was brought in. He said Lowry several times talked about the child having some milk in her hands and tripping. He said Lowry "never asked if she was going to be alright."

Nurse Deborah Kay Blevins said Dr. Vance came rushing into the emergency room, saying, "We need help."

She said she immediately started doing compressions on her chest to try to revive her, but she said, "She had no signs of life that I could detect."

She noticed bruising on her ear, her neck and other parts of her body.

Ms. Blevins said Lowry "had no emotion. He was very quiet. He was not tearful."

The witness said, "I was tearful. I was not able to go back to my station" for the rest of the day.

Officer Caleb Brooks told of going to Children's Hospital to take photos of the multiple bruises on the child's body.

He said one appeared to be in the pattern of a belt buckle. He later went to the jail and retrieved Lowry's belt.

Prosecutor Pope said, despite the fact there were seven security cameras at the motel, none was focused on the stairs where Lowry claims she fell.

He said Lowry told police he and the child had gone down to the lobby to get milk and coffee that morning, but he said a camera there showed that did not happen.

The child was declared brain dead two days after being taken to the hospital and died the next day.

Lowry was initially charged with rape of a child and filing a false report. Those charges were dismissed prior to the jury selection.

The child's mother, Melanie Emerson, was charged with aggravated child endangerment. She is due in court next Tuesday.

Lowry had taken her to work that morning and was alone with Tatiana, it was stated.




Cook Arrested For Aggressive Panhandling On Gunbarrel Road

Chattanooga Police have charged Anthony Lebron Cook with aggressive panhandling on Gunbarrel Road. Cook, 51, is also charged with public intoxication. An officer said he responded to Panda Express on a panhandling call. Employees said they had asked Cook to leave multiple times, but he refused. They said he kept asking for money for food. When the officer arrived, Cook ... (click for more)

Haslam Proposes $30 Million For School Safety

Governor Bill Haslam Tuesday proposed $30 million to improve school safety across the state in the amendment to the fiscal year 2018-19 budget proposal to be considered by the General Assembly in the coming weeks. The funding includes $25 million in nonrecurring and $5.2 million in recurring school safety grants. Earlier this month, the governor appointed a School Safety Working ... (click for more)

The Panhandling "Tax" On Gunbarrel

I’ve been reading about the panhandling problem in downtown; it is a huge problem in the Gunbarrel area, too.  It’s commonplace to be accosted by panhandlers when walking from your parked car into a commercial establishment.  And often they are aggressive.  I look carefully around my car before getting out, but sometimes someone will be lurking in between cars and ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Meme From The Meanies

Hardly a day goes past that I don’t receive several strings of memes in my incoming emails and yesterday there was one particular collection that gave me pause for thought. First, here’s the definition of a meme: “An Internet meme (/mi?m/ MEEM) is an activity, concept, catchphrase or piece of media which spreads, often as mimicry or for humorous purposes, from person to person via ... (click for more)

Keiser, Wigg Power Ooltewah Past East Hamilton, 9-5, in 5-3A Baseball

Frustrated by an early season hitting slump, Ooltewah left-fielder Payton Keiser broke loose with four hits, including a clutch three-run triple in a five-run seventh inning, and drove in five runs as the Owls beat rival East Hamilton, 9-5, Tuesday in District 5-3A action in horrible weather for baseball. Keiser had run-scoring singles in the second and fourth innings and ... (click for more)

Moc Golfers Finish 9th At Linger Longer Invitational

The Chattanooga Mocs men’s golf team finished ninth Tuesday at the Linger Longer Invitational. The Mocs final round 300 gave them a season-best 876 total for the 54 holes. Lake Johnson led today’s effort with a level-par 72. Luke Long was one off his pace with a 73. Andrew Weathers and Oliver Simonsen carded 77 and 78, respectively, to round out the counting cards.  The ... (click for more)