Bartley pleads not guilty

Kenneth Bartley pleads not guilty in Campbell County school shootings:

How does this make any sense?

A 14-year-old boy on Friday pleaded innocent in the killing of a high school administrator and the wounding of two others in November.

Kenneth Bartley stood quietly with his head down during an arraignment in Campbell County Criminal Court at Jacksboro. Defense attorney Mike Hatmaker told Judge Shayne Sexton that Bartley was pleading innocent to a seven-count indictment that included first-degree murder.

He shot 3 people, killing one, in front of witnesses and he pleads not guilty? I smell an insanity defense coming.

34 Comments

  1. “He shot 3 people, killing one, in front of witnesses and he pleads not guilty”.

    You took the words right out of my mouth. The insanity defense is the only way the defense can go in this case and it WILL NEVER work. He clearly came to school with an agenda…

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  2. I smell a semi-insanity defence coming, more like “under duress” which is more like temporary insanity. Theyy could also be gearing up to cite abuse……..am getting my popcorn out for this one.

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  3. Insanity has already been ruled out or it would have been kept in juvenile court.

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  4. I think when it is all said and done, more then Little Kenny will be on trial. Lots going on here then has been in the news and not abuse from family………..:arrow:

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  5. anon in tx Says: “He shot 3 people, killing one, in front of witnesses and he pleads not guilty”.

    What witnesses??? He was led in a small office with no windows, door closed and the SRO office on the outside of that door per demand of the principal Gary Seale. So whose left?? Mr. Ken Bruce, whose would be the most creditable, is no longer with us. Kenneth who probably was under the influence of drugs. Mr. Pierce whose going to go along with Mr. Seale because of “the chain of command.” And then Mr. Seale who is clearly a liar and “never liked him anyway” (meaning little Kenny).

    By the attorney pleading “not guilty”, we as a community now have the opportunity to find out the truth. I hope there are no plea bargains and I don’t believe there will be any insanity defenses because none are needed. This is a bright intelligent young boy and even the smartest person can make bad judgment decisions when under the influence of drugs. If that wasn’t true then drugs would be legal for all to use. This community needs a trial so that the healing process can begin to heal. There will be no winners .. no heros .. no celebrations! But the truth of what happened in that little room, the truth of what happened before that day, the truth of what has happened since and the truth of what the law actually means is what is needed!

    What hasn’t happened that NEEDS to happen is the arrest of Gary Seale. If it wasn’t “BUT FOR” his actions there would not be a charge of murder facing this young boy. Gun in school is a crime and having drugs is illegal as well. Maybe those charges would have been enough to get this child some help before it was too late. But ‘late’ it now is because of the interception of Principal Seale taking action into his own hands. Seale’s failed all of us, the students, the community, educators that care, Kenneth Bartley and most of all Ken Bruce. I implore the justice system, the Attorney General’s office, TBI, the Governor’s office, the community of Campbell County, and anyone who believes real and true justice must be done in this case to begin the investigation of the actions of the principal on that dark November 8, 2005. We’ve all seen the pictures of Kenneth Bartley in handcuffs, its about time we see Principal Seale being led to a police car in handcuffs and facing his responsibility in the death of Kenneth Bruce.

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  6. To the cougar mom who claims that Mr. Seales need to be arrested? WHAT FOR? For taking the person who is suspected of having a gun into an office where no children can be harmed. I graduated from Campbell County High School, and I was under the rule of Mr. Seale in both Middle school and High School…and yes sometimes he does have some things that he could do better, but you know what…he is not to blame for Mr. Ken Bruce’s death. And yes, I knew Mr. Bruce, I was in one of the first classes he taught. He was a fine man, an awesome teacher, and an even better principal. AND it is a great loss in this community because so many people were touched by him. What the hell did you expect Mr. Seale to do? ALLOW AN ARMED CHILD UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF DRUGS WANDER THROUGH THE SCHOOL ALL DAY POSSIBLY KILLING CHILDREN???? If you think that is what needs to be done then YOU need to be arrested. And in my personal opinion he did the correct thing. The most correct thing that could be done. Doing what they did took a great deal of bravery. WOULD you be able to lock yourself into a room with someone who may have a gun, risking yourself to save others. Probably not. And that these men did this speaks great deal of how much they are trying to do what is right. Everyone stumbles on doing what is right I am sure you do too, as do I. But to say that Mr. Seale is responsible is an awful allegation that should not have been made. I am positive that Mr. Seale and Mr. Pierce both have regrets about that day, and that they wish everyday that they could do something different…but what happened has already happened. They are not to blame…the one to blame is the one that is on trial. And the fact that you didn’t take the time to think of the guilt these men have because they survived has shown that you care nothing more than getting some sort of revenge on them. Because I know many people in this community have grievances with one or more of them. I am dissapointed that someone from this community views this tragedy in this light.

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  7. Cougar Mom, you are great!! I think you may be too wise for this forum. Trying to inform the ignorant is sometimes a lost cause, especially when they are unwilling to even consider another side to the story.

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  8. Oh Donna, there are many more people that view this tragedy in the same light that . Negligence is to blame for Ken Bruce’s death. The policy states “Law enforcement are to be called” when a student is suspected of being armed. Federal law backs this policy in every single state. Kenneth Bartley sat in that office for 15 minutes casually chatting (no mention of the weapon at this time) with Mr. Pierce while Seale took his time getting to the office. This does not seem like the actions of any courageous or heroic person in my opinion. And I believe that Mrs.Jo Bruce may share my opinion. Please read this article written by Jim Dossett of The LaFollette Press:

    “The widow of a slain Campbell County High assistant principal scolded the Campbell County Board of Education and central office staff at a Thursday meeting. Jo Bruce directed pointed remarks to board members and central office staffers, saying she was tired of hearing how well school personnel handled the Nov. 8 tragedy in which her husband, Ken, and two other principals were shot.

    “You keep saying that everything was done well, but that’s not acceptable.

    “As Ken’s wife, I definitely know that something went wrong that day. We all know that something went wrong or three men would not have been shot,” Bruce told board members.

    Bruce said she has repeatedly asked the central office to review the school safety plan, but she believes those requests have not been followed.

    “Why, when told that the boy had a loaded gun in his pocket, was he (the assailant, Kenneth S. Bartley) not searched?

    “The SRO (School Resource Officer) did a good job getting him out of class, but he was still not searched even at Mr. Pierce’s office,” she said.”
    By Jim Dossett of The LaFollette Press:

    Hmmm… Makes you wonder what really happened….

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  9. For what? Neglience first of all. There’s a little test the law uses called “BUT FOR” .. “If it wasn’t BUT FOR the actions of Gary Seale, Mr. Bruce would not have been shot.” That test in itself proves negligence.

    What else you know say? How about attempted murder. Perhaps he is the one that shot Kenneth .. didn’t you hear that Kenneth was shot also? How about murder? Perhaps during the alleged scuffle it was Seale’s that shot Mr. Bruce? Have you asked him? Would that change your opinion of your ‘hero’ to hear he was the one to blame? How about not following state law: Tenn Code states a principal has a ‘duty’ to contact law enforcement when notified a deadly weapon on campus. How about breaking Fed law: pretty much the same .. principal has duty to contact law enforcement.

    Seiber says “What the hell did you expect Mr. Seale to do?”
    I expected him to do his JOB as defined by state and federal law.

    Seiber says “ALLOW AN ARMED CHILD UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF DRUGS WANDER THROUGH THE SCHOOL ALL DAY POSSIBLY KILLING CHILDREN???? “
    It was the last class of the day that Mr. Seale’s was notified. He didnt even take it serious but rather strolled around the school for over 20 minutes until Mr. Pierce finally convinced him to come to the office.

    Seiber says “WOULD you be able to lock yourself into a room with someone who may have a gun, risking yourself to save others.”
    Hell no. That is pure and utterly STUPIDITY and has been proven as such. Why not follow the law and do the RIGHT thing then NO one would be dead now. Why are you praising this man for being a bully because that’s what he was doing. He took the law into his own hands not risking his life to save others. The child was seated and calm per Ms. Phillips SRO.

    Seiber says “But to say that Mr. Seale is responsible is an awful allegation that should not have been made.”
    I do say it and I believe it. And I hope that he will be charged, convicted and punished.

    Seiber says “Mr. Seale and Mr. Pierce both have regrets about that day, and that they wish everyday that they could do something different…”
    First you want us to believe they are hero’s and did nothing wrong .. now you want us to believe they have regrets .. which is it?? .. are they hero’s that did everything right .. or negligent and wish they had done the right thing??

    Seiber says “I am dissapointed that someone from this community views this tragedy in this light.”
    Well Ms. Seiber I am disappointed that more people in this community would rather lavish Seale with praise instead of taking the time to see the truth.

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  10. There’s a little test the law uses called “BUT FOR” .. “If it wasn’t BUT FOR the actions of Gary Seale, Mr. Bruce would not have been shot.” That test in itself proves negligence.

    You mean like “If it wasn’t BUT FOR Kenny Bartley bringing a gun to school Mr. Bruce would not have been shot.”?

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  11. Exactly Trench .. your a great observer! That makes them both negligent in my book!

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  12. Cougar Mom, apparently you haven’t ever had to call the police here. I have and you know what…most of the time they won’t even bother to show up. A police officer or sheriff’s deputy will call you on their cell phone before they even make an attempt to come out.

    If the police were called for everytime that there was an accusation of a weapon on school property, they would be there every single day, all day long.

    I never once said that they were heroes. I said that in my humble opinion that they did the best thing that they could have done. And NO it was NOT the last class of the day. I know for a fact that there were emergency vehicles there shortly after noon. And as for you saying that there were no other witness…have you ever been into the office at the high school. It isn’t by any means tiny…and has at least 2 exits that I recall. And there are usually on average about 10 persons there… because that is where the guidance counselors offices are also.

    If you were somewhere and someone was killed you would always wonder what you could have done differently and if that could have saved them.

    You wouldn’t even go into that office if it meant saving the lives of children? Well, that is the difference in you and them…they are not selfish. They were thinking far beyond themselves.

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  13. Seiber Says: “you haven’t ever had to call the police here. I have and you know what…most of the time they won’t even bother to show up.”Well once the police were called after the shooting the law enforcement arrived immediately .. why would they not have if Mr. Seale had called like he was supposed to and NO ONE would have been shot.

    Seiber Says: “If the police were called for every time that there was an accusation of a weapon on school property, they would be there every single day, all day long.”
    Then maybe they should be but I don’t believe that would be necessary. Do you know how many times that a deadly weapon was found on the CCHS campus last year? How about the year before? Do you believe that there are that many weapons there and if so then why aren’t we having a killing say once a week??? You make it sound like its a daily occurrence. But all that is beside the point. The point is that STATE law says and FEDERAL law states that the principal has a duty to contact law enforcement first and immediately. It doesn’t matter how many times a day it has to be done. If the State and/or Federal Law says law enforcement must be called every time a student is caught chewing gum well then they should be called. Who gives Seale the authority to say that he is ABOVE the law? If the laws aren’t correct then lobby and have them changed but until they are changed then EVERYONE must obey or be charge accordingly. Until then we should EXPECT those in authority to be good role model and set examples and until further notice a deadly weapon on campus warrants the teachers to call principals/assistant principals and assistant principals to call head principals and head principal to call law enforcement. And as far as chewing gum .. well knowing Seale’s he probably give a 10 day suspension for that and since I haven’t found anything in the State or Federal law about it then Seale can probably do that without breaking any laws.

    Seiber Says: “And NO it was NOT the last class of the day.”
    Yes it was .. the ‘Fourth Period’ which was the last class of the day! Tell me about the FACT emergency vehicles there shortly after noon? Maybe they were there for another reason?? Hmmm were you there that day … I WAS!

    Seiber Says: “have you ever been into the office at the high school.”
    Yes, Mr. Pierce’s office, Mr. Seale’s office, Mrs. Brown’s office, Mrs. Mabry’s office, Mrs. Arnold’s office, and a few others.

    Seiber Says: “It isn’t by any means tiny…and has at least 2 exits that I recall. And there are usually on average about 10 persons there… because that is where the guidance counselors offices are also.”
    I believe you are referring to the open office area .. where Mrs. Morton usually is .. where the intercom is and several desks with phones .. that is NOT where it happened. And yes the open office area does have two doors .. one leads to the main lobby with a large glass half wall and the other is down the hallway that leads into the main hallway which you have to cross before entering the hallway infront of Mr. Seale’s office and Mrs. Brown (which used to be the storage area for the guidance counselors). How long has it been since you graduated? Actually that area has been changed once again just this past year.

    Seiber Says: ” If you were somewhere and someone was killed you would always wonder what you could have done differently and if that could have saved them.”
    Yes I understand what you are saying. Everyday for the rest of my life I will wonder what I could have done differently that could have changed the path of that child Kenneth. Do you ever wonder what you could have done differently to help that child??

    Seiber Says: ” You wouldn’t even go into that office if it meant saving the lives of children?”
    Of course I would do anything that meant saving the lives of children and especially those students of CCHS! I would have taken that bullet in a heartbeat for Ken Bruce as well! But they didn’t save anyone’s life by going in that office that day .. the only thing that resulted was the death of Mr. Bruce per Mr. Seale’s negligence.

    Seiber Says: “Well, that is the difference in you and them…they are not selfish. They were thinking far beyond themselves.”
    Selfish?? Yes I am selfish .. I wish with all my heart that Ken Bruce was still here .. he was an important part of my family’s lives especially my son who considered him an uncle. So call me selfish for wanting him back here. Call me selfish for wanting the children at CCHS safe. Call me selfish for wanting whatever! But that fact is Mr. Seale isnt just selfish he’s a BULLY. And he proved it that day!

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  14. Okay. You first said that you wouldn’t go into that room…then you say you will. But I digress. I do agree that Mr. Seale CAN be a BULLY. And a major one at that. I know this first hand. And for you to imply that Mr. Bruce meant nothing to me personally is truly hurtful because his death has hurt me. And yes…if I knew that Kenny was going to bring a gun I would have done anything and everything in my power to stop him. I want the children at CCHS safe also. It broke my heart when this happened. I remember sitting in class watching the Colombine massacare unfold and I rememer thinking, thank God this will never happen here.

    And as for the weapon you say on campus. If you would recall in 93 or 94 a child brought a gun (unloaded) to LaFollette Middle School. And yes weapons are on CCHS property EVERY SINGLE DAY. I remember when I went to school the boys that hunted had shotguns and such on gun racks in their trucks, some even had compound bows. Hell, most of the boys and even some girls carried pocket knifes. And let’s not forget how deadly a finger nail sharpner can be. One stab to the neck and boom. And the metal compass that the students are required to have in geometry. So yes, there are weapons there EVERYDAY!

    I wish this was a perfect world what stupid stuff like this happens, but it isn’t and no one knows when or if it will ever happen. I remember a time when I couldn’t fathom the thought of something like this taking place here. BUT IT DID. And now, our reality must change. It must change to take into account all the little things that MIGHT or MIGHT NOT happen.

    Perfect example. The car accident awarness program they started there. They started bringing in people to talk about car crashes, speed, and drinking and driving. They did this after several students were killed. Hell, they even put a memorial up in front of the school with their names on it. The 4 years I was in CCHS there was a student killed in a car wreck EVERY YEAR! One was one of my best friends.

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  15. And yes I know when the emergency vehicles began arriving because I live STRAIGT ACROSS THE ROAD!!!! THEY BLOCKED MY ROAD!!!

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  16. TENNESSEE INJUSTICE: KENNETH BARTLEY TO BE TRIED AS AN ADULT

    AND PETITION IN SUPPORT OF KENNETH BARTLEY

    As the state of Tennessee begins yet another trial of a juvenile being tried as an adult, my concern once again turns toward a child who is not an adult.


    (LaFollette Press) Kenneth Bartley in court, 11-16-05

    My grief and compassion naturally go out to the Bruce family who suffered such a great loss, and just as naturally I feel for the child being tried as an adult. All victims in this situation are deserving of consideration, and must be considered for a fair trial to take place.

    It is my understanding that the child standing trial, Kenneth Bartley, age 14, was abusing prescription drugs at the time of the shooting and had been abusing various prescription drugs and illegal drugs for some time. This does not excuse murder by any means but this aspect must be taken into consideration when determining the fate of this child.
    It is also my understanding that this child carried the gun to school to sell for Oxycontin after school. By all accounts, this child did not go to school that day with the intention of shooting or killing anyone. It appears to me that this child had a serious drug problem, by all accounts that I have heard, and it was his drug problem that went unnoticed, or rather, ignored by those who were supposed to guide him.
    It is also my understanding that this child came to school with the gun already loaded with the clip in it. However, I have heard conflicting accounts, that the boy loaded the gun in the office and then put the clip in it. These are two entirely different reports of what happened that day. Had the boy had time to load the gun and put the clip in, surely the administrators would have had an opportunity to get the gun at this time especially, if this child was under the influence of drugs at the time of the shooting. The principles accounts of what happened in the office on that day have been very vague and inconsistent with other reports. Mr. Pierce, I believe, said that he was shot during the struggle for the gun. Kenneth was also shot in the hand during the struggle for the gun. In an article, Pierce stated it all happened so fast. Were the other shots that injured the other administrators fired during the struggle too? Why would a principle confront a child who reportedly had a gun on him in a small confined area?
    Being that, the administrators cannot even be sure of what exactly happened, how can it be determined, beyond a shadow of doubt, what exactly happened in that tiny office on the day of November 8th, 2005? One thing is for sure, a deeply loved and admired man, beloved husband and father, respected teacher, and good friend died that day, two administrators were injured, and a young boy’s life was ruined. Nobody is a hero in this situation. There are no winners.

    Negligence on the other administrators’ part may be to blame for Ken Bruce’s death.

    This child clearly, lacked the appropriate structure and guidance necessary for healthy adolescent development. It appears that he was overlooked, or rather, neglected by those who were supposed to care for and love this child most. Kenneth Bartley needs treatment, not to be locked up in a prison cell, with no chance for rehabilitation. He is a child and children are capable of change. He is 14 years old. He will change so much in the next several years. It would be a travesty to lock this child up in a prison cell, in essence giving up all hope of rehabilitation.

    1. All children deserve the chance to redeem themselves.

    2. At the time of the shooting, Kenneth was three months into his 14th year of his life.

    3. Developmentally, as many studies have indicated, a 14 year old child is not physically or mentally capable of comprehending the complexity of their actions and the severity of their actions and their consequences.

    4. Also, it is very likely that this child was under the influence of drugs when the incident occurred. Several reports indicate that this child was abusing several different drugs. Kenneth was charged with possession of Schedule II narcotics with intention to sell that day too.

    5. It is unclear as to when and in what manner the shots were fired. There are conflicting accounts as to whether or not the gun was already loaded with the clip in it prior to the child entering the office. Assuming that Kenneth was under the influence of drugs at the time of the shooting, then one would think that this would significantly impact his ability to reason, by impairing his judgment, slowing his motor movement and coordination, and altering his state of mind. Therefor it is very unlikely that he would have been able to load the gun and put the clip in the gun in a timely manner. Especially, considering he was unfamiliar with the gun. Why was the gun not taken away during this time? Surely this would have been an opportune time to intercept the weapon instead of waiting until it was loaded with the clip in place. Other accounts indicate that the gun was already loaded with the clip in place, prior to Kenneth entering the office. It has already been reported that the boy and one administrator were shot during the struggle for the gun. If the appropriate procedure was followed (law enforcement called in to handle the situation) it is likely that no one would have been harmed. Appropriate procedures were followed at a neighboring school only days after the Campbell County shooting, in which law enforcement was called, and no one was hurt.

    6. Three months prior to the shooting, August 8th 2005, Kenneth had an altercation with his neighbors in which the police were called. Nothing was done. This child was crying out for help and no one did a thing. Kenneth even contacted his case worker, and still he received no treatment. Many people failed this child. The signs were present, but ignored or overlooked by all involved.

    7. Kenneth should be held accountable as the CHILD that he was and still is.

    8. Kenneth should be given the chance to be rehabilitated, so that he can one day live a life outside of prison. Prison gives a child no opportunity for rehabilitation or personal growth.

    It is my hope that the jury strongly considers the option of rehabilitation. The fate of this child now lies in the hands of the jury.

    Below is a quote from one of the posts I wrote on Kenneth Bartley’s http://www.kidsincourt.net forum page.

    Quote:
    Kenneth’s transfer hearing was going to be open to the public. Usually, juvenile cases are closed to the he public however, based on his charge, it was ruled an open court session. I am confident that Kenneth’s attorney chose to waive Kenneth’s right to this trial in his best interest. Campbell County, TN is a small town and I honestly believe that Kenneth would not have had a fair trial. It appeared from the very beginning that this child’s case would be tried by the media. Many people in this small town feeling’s and opinions are based on their personal relationships with the victims and their families. Their opinions and judgments are not based on the facts. They refuse to listen to the facts. Had Kenneth gone through with this transfer hearing, his case, beyond a doubt, would have been sent to adult court, d/t the nature of his charge. TN law dictates that a juvenile charged with murder case will stay in the juvenile court, only if the juvenile is found committable to a mental facility. Kenneth Bartley was found non-committable to a mental health facility. To avoid all of the unwanted negative media coverage, I assume that Kenneth’s lawyer chose to waive the hearing in Kenneth’s best interest. Hopefully, the jurors in adult court will be more removed from the small town and able to be more objective when looking at the facts. I pray. I hope. That is all anyone can do at this point.

    Below is another quote form one of my posts on Kenneth Bartley’s http://www.kidsincourt.net forum page, in regard to additional resources being available now that his trial has been moved to adult court.

    Quote:
    I really have no idea what exactly these additional resources are. But I am hopeful that this jury will look more at the facts surrounding the incident. There is so much more involved in this case than just a boy going to school with a loaded gun and shooting three administrators. The details and the events leading up to the shooting need to be looked at objectively for Kenneth’s sake. There are too many inconsistencies as to what happened during the struggle. Also, many other important areas need to be thoroughly examined before a decision can be made. I know that most people want to believe that the administrators acted as heroes by disarming the student. But others argue that negligence on the principle’s part (Mr. Seale) lead to the other administrator’s death. I have even read that Mr. Bruce’s widow, Jo Bruce, has since voiced her frustration with the way the situation was handled. My understanding of what I read was that Mrs. Bruce was tired of hearing people call the administrators heroes. And that maybe the principle inappropriately handled the situation by taking matters into his own hands, resulting in Mr. Bruce’s death. Mrs. Bruce requested that this matter be investigated. My main concern is, why was the school policy not followed and why was the resource officer sent out of the small office without searching Kenneth first? Should the principle have taken matters into his own hands? If appropriate procedures were followed (law enforcement called to handle the situation), could the shooting have been avoided all together? I have heard reports that a few days after the shooting, another child allegedly brought a gun to school, not far from Campbell County High School. However, in this case, appropriate procedures were followed (law enforcement were called to handle the situation) and no one was harmed. Also, was Kenneth on any drugs at the time of the shooting? Were any drugs found in his system? Was blood work done? This information has not been released or even eluded to in the media. But several reports indicate that this child had been abusing prescription drugs. And it was also reported that he allegedly brought the gun to school to sell for drugs after school. These are just a few of the many things that I think need to be examined before a verdict can be reached. Hopefully, the additional resources that they may have access to in adult court, will help in determining what exactly happened that day.

    (Below are two articles discussing Jo Bruce’s thoughts on the shooting, the death of her husband, Ken Bruce, and her ability to find forgiveness in her heart.)


    (News Sentinel)

    Quote:
    A Remarkable Woman

    http://blogs.wate.com/patterson/?m=200604

    Posted in Behind the Scenes by
    Gene Patterson on April 25, 2006 (excerpt)

    When her heart could’ve filled with the blackness of anger and revenge, she chose the light of forgiveness.

    Her example of dignity and grace in the face of tragedy is one we will not likely see again for a long time.

    She is a driven woman, driven to make a positive difference for the children of Campbell County and everywhere.

    On the day of her husbands funeral, she made this pledge:

    I made a promise that day to make sure that Ken Bruce would always be remembered for the way he lived his life and not just for the way he died. I promised Ken that our family would in fact, be better, not bitter, and that we would do whatever was necessary to restore his school back to a place of learning and laughter and not a place of violence.

    Jo Bruce lives that promise everyday. Shes working with state lawmakers on the SAVE Act..Schools Against Violence in Education. She believes its passage can make a difference.

    Quote:
    Wife Of Slain School Administrator Criticizes Campbell Co. School Board
    Submitted by Left Of The Dial on Fri, 2006/01/27 – 4:31pm.
    From Jim Dossett of The LaFollette Press:

    http://www.knoxviews.com/node/155

    The widow of a slain Campbell County High assistant principal scolded the Campbell County Board of Education and central office staff at a Thursday meeting. Jo Bruce directed pointed remarks to board members and central office staffers, saying she was tired of hearing how well school personnel handled the Nov. 8 tragedy in which her husband, Ken, and two other principals were shot.

    You keep saying that everything was done well, but that’s not acceptable.

    As Ken’s wife, I definitely know that something went wrong that day. We all know that something went wrong or three men would not have been shot, Bruce told board members.

    Bruce said she has repeatedly asked the central office to review the school safety plan, but she believes those requests have not been followed.

    Why, when told that the boy had a loaded gun in his pocket, was he (the assailant, Kenneth S. Bartley) not searched?

    The SRO (School Resource Officer) did a good job getting him out of class, but he was still not searched even at Mr. Pierce’s office, she said.
    (Above article provided by LaFollette Press)

    Yes, this child needs to be held accountable for his actions, but as a child.
    This child did not have appropriate supervision and guidance. By all accounts, Kenneth was neglected by those who were supposed to guide and care for him, and overlooked by the public educational institution, that was fully aware of his past behavioral problems. It also appears that this child had a serious drug problem that went unnoticed, or rather, ignored. The media mentions little about his drug abuse and the multiple accounts that Kenneth was on drugs at the time of the shooting, thus altering his state of mind. If this child was indeed on drugs at the time of the shooting, then I would think that this would significantly impact his ability reason, by impairing his judgment and altering his state of mind. And if it was reported that Kenneth had a gun, then why would the principle think it in his best interest to confront this child in a small confined space? Many studies show that a 14 year old child does not have the same developmental capacity and maturity to comprehend the complexity and the magnitude of their actions, the consequences of their actions, and the impact and the lasting effects of their actions, that an adult has yet they are able to stand trial as an adult in our justice system.


    (Yahoo News) Kenneth in court, 11-16-05

    **PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION (link below) IN SUPPORT OF KENNETH BARTLEY.


    Kenneth in court, 3-30-06
    (Wade Payne Associated Press- News Sentinel)

    “THIS CHILD NEEDS TREATMENT AND A CHANCE FOR REHABILITATION NOT IMPRISONMENT”

    http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/433285928

    _________________

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  17. Bobbie, you lost what little credibility by telling me you’re a member of Kids In Court. The same group who wanted Eric Schorling and Jason McLaughlin tried as juveniles. Scholing plunged a 7 inch blade into the middle of his ex-girlfriends back. McLaughlin shot two other students to death, one at point blank range. Sometimes kids are beyond help. Bartley is one of them.

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  18. Seiber Says: “Okay. You first said that you wouldn’t go into that room…then you say you will.
    If going in a room would save childrens lives YES. But thats not what this is about.
    What I would NOT do is take an armed child in a tiny room, removed the SRO officer, shut the door and begin ‘The Seale Treatment’ not to mention breaking the law (state and federal) by never calling the law enforcement! Its asking for trouble! (‘The Seale Treatment’: To irritate, torment, to impede and exhaust by repeated attacks or raids, disrespect, to coerce or inhibit by as as if by threats, to make timid, fill with fear, to choke, to stick lollipops in people’s mouth)

    Seiber Says: “But I digress. I do agree that Mr. Seale CAN be a BULLY. And a major one at that. I know this first hand.
    Please share your story! I understand it may be extremely personal and it you’d like you can tell me directly at cchscougars@gmail.com.

    Seiber Says: “And for you to imply that Mr. Bruce meant nothing to me personally is truly hurtful because his death has hurt me.
    If you think I implied that then I’m sorry. But Mr. Bruce’s blood is on Mr. Seale’s hands and I’m trying with all my heart for everyone to see that! (And yes Trench, its on Kenneth’s hands also!)

    Seiber Says: “And yes…if I knew that Kenny was going to bring a gun I would have done anything and everything in my power to stop him. I want the children at CCHS safe also. It broke my heart when this happened.
    I dont mean just the day of the shooting. What about before that? Did you know Kenneth? What did you do on your last birthday .. anyone call you and say ‘happy birthday’ .. anyone email you .. how about a gift or a party? Kenneth’s last birthday made state news when he went to a neighbor’s house with a gun .. Campbell Co law enforcement was called (and yes they showed up immediately) .. all because Kenneth crying out for help! Next birthday .. anyone that helps make you feel good or special or that day .. make sure you thank them .. Kenneth he didnt have anybody.

    Seiber Says: “I remember sitting in class watching the Colombine massacare unfold and I rememer thinking, thank God this will never happen here.
    I know what you mean .. I still pray that a massacre like Colombine never happens here especially since next year I still have a child in school there. (mas·sa·cre (mas’?-k?r) n. The act or an instance of killing a large number of humans indiscriminately and cruelly typically five or more people.) I have spoken to many of the students that were there at Colombine and they’re fears and scars very similar to those of our children at CCHS the day of our shooting. The saddest part for me is I believed it could have happened like Colombine here and possibly worse due to the disrespect this principal showed these children.

    Seiber Says: “And as for the weapon you say on campus. If you would recall in 93 or 94 a child brought a gun (unloaded) to LaFollette Middle School.
    I’m sorry I don’t recall that, at that time I was not a resident of Campbell County. Was law enforcement called? Did anyone get shot? What happened to that child?

    Seiber Says: “And yes weapons are on CCHS property EVERY SINGLE DAY. I remember when I went to school the boys that hunted had shotguns and such on gun racks in their trucks, some even had compound bows. Hell, most of the boys and even some girls carried pocket knifes. And let’s not forget how deadly a finger nail sharpner can be. One stab to the neck and boom. And the metal compass that the students are required to have in geometry. So yes, there are weapons there EVERYDAY!
    First of all Code (Tennessee State Law) doesn’t have a finger nail sharpener or a metal compass listed under ‘deadly weapons’. And you’re right about shotguns on gun racks and compound bows, hell I am guilty of that myself right! So why didn’t Mr. Seale have any of those guys/girls bring their guns into that little office and shut the door and do heavens only knows what? I’d put my money on a school shooting that day as well!

    Seiber Says: “ I wish this was a perfect world what stupid stuff like this happens, but it isn’t and no one knows when or if it will ever happen. I remember a time when I couldn’t fathom the thought of something like this taking place here. BUT IT DID. And now, our reality must change. It must change to take into account all the little things that MIGHT or MIGHT NOT happen. I agree. As a matter a fact I brought my children here to begin and live their high school years in a nice small community where it is safe to go to school. I brought them here from a large city where the police substation was at the entrance of the school and metal detectors everywhere. I didn’t want my children to experience that for their entire high school days. I really did believe it was safe here and as a parent I did what I could to protect my children. One way I did was to DEMAND to my children to NEVER go into a room with Mr. Seale. They had instructions as to what to do if that were to proposed. Every day I wish I had told Kenneth and every other child in that school the same thing! I wish more parents would have done that, especially Kenneth’s. I implore any student there now .. any parent to tell their children .. NEVER go into an office with Mr. Seale. Someone may die .. its a PROVEN fact now!

    Seiber Says: “Perfect example. The car accident awarness program they started there. They started bringing in people to talk about car crashes, speed, and drinking and driving. They did this after several students were killed. Hell, they even put a memorial up in front of the school with their names on it. The 4 years I was in CCHS there was a student killed in a car wreck EVERY YEAR! One was one of my best friends.
    Great example! For the rest of my life the weigh on my shoulders will be that I didn’t make more of an “awareness” of Mr. Seale and his potential threat. That’s what I am doing now and will continue to do. I hope and pray daily that no one else will ever have to die because of the actions and/or negligence of Gary Seale!

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  19. Trench Says: “… Schorling and Jason McLaughlin tried as juveniles. Scholing plunged a 7 inch blade into the middle of his ex-girlfriends back. McLaughlin shot two other students to death, one at point blank range. Sometimes kids are beyond help. Bartley is one of them. ”
    Come on Trench .. comparing these are ridiculous. McLaughlin had imaginary friend and obessesed about his acne .. took a gun safety class ..then took a gun and murdered classmates in cold blood! Scholing was the nazi wanna-be who planned .. then literally back-stabbed his ex-girlfriend then bragged about it. Kenneth was a kid who had no parental guidance who had no intention of killing anyone and got cornered in a tiny school office. Clearly there was an adult negligence in place when the state and federal laws were broken. I don’t remember anyone breaking any laws in their cases (other than them) and having innocents die because of it. Kenneth is NOT one of those beyond help .. but I believe Gary Seale is!! 😕

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  20. the boy that brought the gun before was permantlyremoved from public schools. The reason why he brought it was proof of the Bullying that you speak of…but this time not Mr. Seale, but rather Mr. Ray. The boy was of Arabic decent (I think but not sure), Auri Paura, and many older boys beat him up repeatidly, and nothing was done. So, he brought the gun to try to scare the ring leader of it all (who was also removed from public schools for bringing a knife) into leaving him alone. And the situation was handled the same way then. Since that point there have been many accusation of people with guns/knives that were false. And I would think that they thought this was the same type of situation.

    You also make mention of the “But If” clause in the laws. Well, but if his parents hadn’t removed him from a program to help him (mentioned in another article here) it wouldn’t have happened. But if the parents had the guns properly locked in a gun cabinet, or a safety lock that is available at any police station in the county for FREE, it wouldn’t have happened. If you are going to go with the negligence factor, then you need to go to the very start of the chain. And yes, I do admit there are many negligent people involved, but in most cases they never thought it would have ever happened here.

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  21. Because I am member of Kids in Court does not mean that I support and advocate for each individual child. I do not even know which children you are referring to. Each circumstance is different. I am a advocate for Kenneth Bartley. And Trench, your approval means nada to me. Actually losing credibility with you Trench, makes me know I am doing the right thing all the more.

    Like

  22. In my “TENNESSEE INJUSTICE: KENNETH BARTLEY TO BE TRIED AS AN ADULT”, I even referenced how days later a student at a neighboring school brought a gun to school and the appropriate procedures were followed (law enforcement called), and no one was injured.
    It seems that a few of you could benefit from reading my above article (#18) in its entirety. It explains everything. Quote from my article: ” a few days after the shooting, another child allegedly brought a gun to school, not far from Campbell County High School. However, in this case, appropriate procedures were followed (law enforcement were called to handle the situation) and no one was harmed.”

    Like

  23. “Bartley pleads not guilty to school shootings”
    June 9, 2006


    http://www.wate.com/Global/story.asp?S=5009838&ampnav=0RYv
    (VIDEO AT THIS STORY LINK)

    JACKSBORO(WATE/AP) — Kenny Bartley, Jr., 14, pleaded not guilty Friday to fatally shooting a high school administrator and wounding two others in November.

    A seven count indictment accuses Bartley of first-degree murder in the shooting of Assistant Principal Ken Bruce after being called to the office at Campbell County Comprehensive High School.

    In the indictment, Bartley is also charged with another count of felony murder of Bruce while committing attempted murder on the other two men injured, Principal Gary Seale and Assistant Principal Jim Pierce.

    Although charged as an adult, Bartley would not be eligible for death penalty. Friday was the first court appearance he has made as an adult.

    The judge has set a July 14 trial date.

    Just three months before the shootings, police say Bartley threatened to kill his neighbor.

    The disturbing details were recorded by 911 dispatchers in Campbell County.

    On August 8, 2005, Bartley called his case worker from his neighbor’s house. The 911 tape says, “He is threatening to kill his neighbors so the cops will come and kill him cause he doesn’t want to kill himself. That’s what he is telling his case worker.”

    The case worker was able to contact a Grainger County officer while she was on the phone with Bartley and told him to call 911. “She believes he will try this,” she says.

    The officer urged dispatchers to send sheriff’s deputies to the home. “They do have the weapon in the house. He is threatening to take that weapon and kill his neighbor, his friend and then the police kill him.”

    According to the 911 tape, Bartley was having problems at home.

    The incident happened just a few months after Bartley was taken out of Kingswood School, a treatment facility for children.

    6 News spoke with Kingswood Principal Darrell Helton in December. He says Bartley’s parents enrolled him because of behavioral problems. They pulled him out before his treatment was complete.
    (WATE/AP)

    MANY PEOPLE FAILED THIS CHILD ON A GRAND SCALE -Bobbie7day


    (Yahoo News)

    Below quote from News 6 Article (WATE)
    Quote:
    “Just three months before the shootings, police say Bartley threatened to kill his neighbor.

    The disturbing details were recorded by 911 dispatchers in Campbell County.

    On August 8, 2005, Bartley called his case worker from his neighbor’s house. The 911 tape says, “He is threatening to kill his neighbors so the cops will come and kill him cause he doesn’t want to kill himself. That’s what he is telling his case worker.”

    The case worker was able to contact a Grainger County officer while she was on the phone with Bartley and told him to call 911. “She believes he will try this,” she says.

    The officer urged dispatchers to send sheriff’s deputies to the home. “They do have the weapon in the house. He is threatening to take that weapon and kill his neighbor, his friend and then the police kill him.”

    According to the 911 tape, Bartley was having problems at home.”
    (WATE/AP)

    Bobbie7day: I wonder what happened to Kenneth that day, that made him so upset. No one ever asks the most important questions. The paper says he was “having problems at home”, what problems would those be? Clearly, this child was asking for help, or better yet, crying out for help. How much more obvious did he have to be. So many people failed this child on a grand scale. The signs were everywhere, but essentially no one cared enough to do anything about it. The police let him go without charging him with anything. Kenneth was allegedly on drugs at the time of this incident too. The same type of drug that he was on when the school shooting took place. And Kenneth did not get treatment after this incident, even after speaking with his case worker, who he called while the actual altercation was taking place with his neighbor. KENNETH CALLED HIS CASE WORKER FROM THE SCENE!!! HE WAS REACHING OUT!!! NO ONE HELPED.

    Below quote from News 6 Article (WATE)
    Quote:
    “The incident happened just a few months after Bartley was taken out of Kingswood School, a treatment facility for children.

    6 News spoke with Kingswood Principal Darrell Helton in December. He says Bartley’s parents enrolled him because of behavioral problems. They pulled him out before his treatment was complete.”
    (WATE/AP)

    Bobbie7day: The above information about Kenneth not completing his treatment at Kingswood is incorrect. Kenneth did complete this school’s program. The school called Kenneth parents to have them come pick him up. Kenneth had been at this school for a year and a half, with no report of any serious behavioral problems. Kenneth appears to do well when he has appropriate structure and guidance. He had only been home three months when incident occurred with his neighbor. Hmmm… Makes you wonder what was going on in this poor child’s life.

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  24. bobbie says The case worker was able to contact a Grainger County officer

    Why would Grainger Co. be called? That is 2 counties away, and the fastest they could have gotten there would have been NO faster than an hour.:|

    Like

  25. Seiber Says: And NO it was NOT the last class of the day. I know for a fact that there were emergency vehicles there shortly after noon.”
    Donna I have acquired a copy of the 911 calls to the county and the first of which started at 2:11pm. If you send me your email I will gladly email you a copy of it in mp3 format. I’m not sure what the emergency vehicles were there for but it wasnt for the shooting. 😕

    Like

  26. Seiber Says:Why would Grainger Co. be called?

    During the incident Kenneth was on the phone with his counselor which was in the county where Kenneth temporarily resided before(Grainger) and that counselor upon learning the situation (i.e. child with gun) called 9-1-1 which was answered by Grainger Co. authorities. That dispatch and law enforcement division then immediately notified the neccessary personel in Campbell County to then handle the situation.

    Like

  27. Donna, The Grainger County Police Department obviously transferred the case worker’s call to the LaFollette or Jacksboro Police Department. The case worker was calling from Grainger County, so they automatically connected her with this counties’ police department.

    Like

  28. Also, Donna, Kenneth did not even arrive to school until 12:30pm (which would have been during his third period class) on November 8th, 2005. Your information is incorrect Donna.

    Like

  29. Okay, I said after noon. About 1 or so. There were emergency vehicles there. I called my uncle who’s daughter was a senior. She was in Choir class during the lock down. The Choir teacher only had 3 classes when I went there. She didn’t teach a 4th period class. I do know that he was late that day.

    And Bobby, if the 911 call went to Grainger Co. that was the closest officials. They may have had to go out of district, but in that circumstance I think it would have been fine until CCSD arrived. And why the sheriff’s dept. because there is a little known law that states that city officers are only allowed to go 1 mile into the other districts. Does no one remember this from when the Wal-Mart moved. LaFollette Officials were so angry about the lost tax revenue that they told Jacksboro that they would not help them monitor the lots and such there. Jacksboro officers turn around at First National Bank, as does LaFollette officials.

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  30. Okay about the compass and the nail file. Ok maybe the compass isn’t in there, but I damned for sure know that the stupid people have put nail files on that list because in cosmotology we had to sign for them and return them at the end of the day. We weren’t allowed to carry them because according to the administration, “they were deemed hazardous, as are also fingernail clips” *shakes head stupid I know*

    Like

  31. Donna,

    I DO NOT KNOW HOW ELSE TO PUT IT SO THAT YOU WILL UNDERSTAND: KENNETH CALLED HIS CASE WORKER FROM THE SCENE. SHE WAS IN GRAINGER COUNTY KENNETH WAS IN CAMPBELL COUNTY (LAFOLLETTE). SHE MADE THE CALL TO 911, BECAUSE KENNETH TOLD HER HE WAS THREATENING TO SHOOT HIS NEIGHBORS SO THAT THE POLICE WOULD COME AND SHOOT HIM, BECAUSE HE WAS TOO AFRAID TO KILL HIMSELF. HE SAID, “THEN IT WILL ALL BE OVER.” HE WAS SOBBING, CLEARLY CRYING OUT FOR HELP. GRAINGER COUNTY THEN PROMPTLY TRANSFERED HER CALL TO CAMPBELL COUNTY DISPATCHERS, WHO THEN WENT OUT TO THE SCENE (IN LAFOLLETE, CAMPBELL COUNTY)!!! IT IS AS SIMPLE AS THAT. KENNETH WAS UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF VALIUM AT THE TIME THIS ALTERCATION TOOK PLACE, AS WELL AS ON THE DAY OF THE SCHOOL SHOOTING.

    Like

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