Family members of Hamilton County crash victim want closure


HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WDEF) — Family members of a man who was killed in a Hamilton County car crash are frustrated with the progress of the case. They want closure.

Justin Whaley made a brief appearance in court this afternoon. He is the former EMT and reserve deputy accused of driving drunk, going the wrong way down Highway 111 and hitting and killing James Brumlow in July of 2018.

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April Hinson, Brumlow’s mother-in-law, was upset the hearing was pushed back to September 18th.

“That it has just been put off. I seem to understand it a little bit more because they want evidence from the Soddy-Daisy Police Department, which they need to get all of that, the dashcams, whatever they need. But it is very disappointing again. We just want it to go to trial we are done with these little stops. It is hard enough,” Hinson said.

Hinson says these hearings make them relive that day over and over.

“Our daughter needs a little bit of closure after a year. It is really hard on her. It is hard on our grand kids. It is hard on us. We just need closure.”

Judge Barry Steelman says right now the jury will be from the area.

“If the defendant is able to establish though that there has been enough communication within the community about the case that you can convince me that it will be difficult to be successful in that effort, I may change my mind about it. We still have a little while,” Judge Steelman said.

Brumlow’s family members say they will keep on going to these hearings to show their support.

“If it was one of us he would be fighting for us and we are never going to give up that fight,” Hinson said.

Whaley’s trial is scheduled for January.