Rockwood Man Charged in Drug-Related Death of Girlfriend

January 16, 2024

CUMBERLAND COUNTY – A joint investigation by special agents with the Drug Investigation Division of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office has resulted in the indictment of a Roane County man, in connection to the drug-related death of a Rockwood woman.

In January 2022, TBI drug agents joined deputies in investigating the death of Ashley Nichole Cressel (DOB 10/29/1991), who was found unresponsive at her workplace in Cumberland County in August 2021. She was transported to a local hospital, where she was pronounced deceased. It was later determined she died from acute methamphetamine toxicity. During the course of the investigation, agents developed information that identified the victim’s then-boyfriend Michael Kerley as the individual who provided her the drugs.

On January 8th, the Cumberland County Grand Jury returned indictments charging Michael Paul Kerley (DOB 10/18/1988) with one count of Second Degree Murder and one count of Manufacture, Sale, Delivery of Schedule II Narcotics. Kerley was arrested by the Sheriff’s Office and booked into the Cumberland County Jail on a $500,000 bond.

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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