Teen indicted in murder case

Friday, July 27, 2012

By Karen Hall

Staff Writer

A young Lewisburg man was indicted this week, charged with the shooting death of Penny Blackwell Coyle.

Jerron Blake Braden, 18, was indicted on one count of first-degree murder. The indictment states on or about Nov. 21, 2011, Braden did "intentionally and with premeditation did kill Penny Blackwell Coyle."

Appointed attorney David McKenzie and Braden stood side by side in court Wednesday afternoon for arraignment. Braden confirmed his identity, and McKenzie waived formal reading of the indictment and entered a plea of not guilty on behalf of his client. Braden's next court appearance is to be Aug. 22.

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Agent Andrew Kon was the witness who made the presentation to the grand jury. Coyle's death was also investigated by the Marshall County Sheriff's Department, the Lewisburg Police Department, and agents of the 17th Judicial District Drug Task Force.

Braden was arrested on Dec. 20, 2011. At the time of the murder he was a juvenile (his birthday is Nov. 22), so his case remained in Juvenile Court, with Judge Lee Bussart Bowles making strenuous efforts to protect Braden's privacy.

In June Bowles held a closed hearing, at the end of which the charge of first-degree murder was transferred to Circuit Court. This was done before the grand jury's June meeting, but law enforcement waited until this month to present the case to the grand jury.

Unsubstantiated information that two or more other people involved in Coyle's death have been circulating since the murder, but so far no one else has been charged.

Bowles appointed McKenzie to represent Braden in Juvenile Court, and Circuit Court Judge Robert Crigler continued that appointment.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment constitutes only charges and that every person is presumed innocent until their guilt has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt.