published Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

Meigs County deputy sheriff arrested in shooting

A Meigs County, Tenn., deputy sheriff is under arrest on charges related to shooting at his stepfather, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

Bradley Collins, 35, of Spring City, was indicted by the Rhea County grand jury on one count of aggravated assault and two counts of reckless endangerment, the release stated.

TBI spokeswoman Kristin Helm said the incident happened Sept. 23, 2012. Collins went to his sister’s home on Old Stage Road in Spring City on a report she had been assaulted by her father.

Collins arrived to find his sister safe and his stepfather, Randall Lee Copeland, had returned to his own home next door, Helm said.

Collins knew the Rhea County Sheriff’s Department was on the way, and he walked to Copeland’s house with his duty pistol.

Collins told investigators Copeland had a rifle in his hands and refused to put it down, so Collins fired twice at him but missed. However, nearby homeowners were outside when Collins fired, and 12th Judicial District Attorney General Mike Taylor asked the TBI to investigate the incident, Helm said.

Collins was booked into the Rhea County Jail this morning on a $10,000 bond.

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