Parents charged following drinking gathering

Becky Campbell • May 8, 2012 at 10:01 PM

Twenty juveniles and an 18-year-old were found at a Jonesborough home along with 100 containers of beer, malt liquor and Jell-O shooters Sunday evening after a mother called police about her missing daughter.

The two adults at the house, Patrick L. Mills, 45, and Patricia Mills, 43, of 115 Meadowview Drive, Jonesborough, were arrested on 20 counts of contributing to the delinquency of a child.

Washington County Sheriff’s Deputy Eric Bradford first took a report on Sunday from a woman who said her teenage daughter had been missing overnight.

Officers then responded to the Millses’ home and were allowed inside where the found the alcohol containers — some empty and some partially full — scattered through the house.

The girl reported missing by her mother was found in a bedroom in bed with several other minors, according to the affidavit of complaint Bradford filed in Washington County Sessions Court.

Other teens, including an 18-year-old, were found asleep in other rooms of the home.

According to Bradford’s affidavit, the Millses signed statements indicating they knew there was an underage drinking party going on in their house while they were there.

Officers took some of the juveniles home and released them to their parents and others were picked up by their parents at the Millses’ residence.

The Millses were scheduled for a hearing in Session Court Tuesday, but the case was reset and they were each appointed attorneys. Charles London was appointed to represent Patrick Mills and the public defender’s office was appointed to represent Patricia Mills. Their next court date is June 11.

As for the juveniles who were reportedly consuming alcohol the night before, Sheriff Ed Graybeal said there will not be any charges.

“We talked to juvenile services and they said there wasn’t enough information to prosecute,” Graybeal said.

His understanding of the event was “it was just a gathering at their home,” and unrelated to any school function. “I don’t think it was connected to any prom or anything like that.

“I think it’s really bad judgment on the adults’ part. That’s just common sense to me,” he said.

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