Polk County man charged in deaths
Posted: Friday, April 9, 2010 8:01 pm
BENTON (AP) — An investigator said a man charged in the deaths of two women from overdoses of prescription drugs in rural East Tennessee obtained the painkillers legally and the case reflects a growing problem.
Forty-six-year-old Terry Hawkins of Polk County is charged with two counts of second-degree murder. He is being held on a $35,000 bond, pending an arraignment. Investigators said he has not hired a lawyer.
Sheriff’s Department Detective Kevin Cole said Hawkins is accused of providing prescription painkillers at his residence to the two victims, 44-year-old Becky Beavers and 32-year-old Tabitha Peak.
Investigators found the women’s bodies Saturday at the residence near Copperhill, after Hawkins was arrested in nearby Fannin County, Ga.
Cole said Beavers lived with Hawkins and Peak was visiting.
He said both deaths were from overdoses of pain medications obtained by prescription in Georgia.
“It was a large quantity” that Hawkins legally obtained, Cole said.
The detective said prescription abuse is “really on the increase. You have these doctors out here who freely prescribe these things.”
Published in The Messenger 4.9.10