DeKalb Co. Sheriff Releases More Information About Teen’s Death


Alan Michael Tarwater

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DeKalb County Sheriff Jimmy Harris released more details about the investigation into the death of a teenager.

Alan Michael Tarwater, 17, died April 4 at a home on County Road 1931 in Crossville.

Investigators have arrested Todd LaShane Thomas, 43, for questioning.

He is charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

“There was some activity going on at the residence the night before the juvenile was found dead in the residence, that we feel Mr. Thomas could have stopped,” Harris said.

“Not that he was involved in it, but he could have stopped being an adult.”

Investigators said Thomas is related to one of the other teens who was at the house with Tarwater.

Harris said other adults may also be charged in the case.

“There is a possibility that there can be more arrests made that didn’t intervene in maybe what was going on with these juveniles that could have stopped it,” the Sheriff said.

The Sheriff’s Office is still awaiting the toxicology report for Tarwater.  They believe they have the cause of death, but can’t say for certain until the report is back.

“We don’t expect foul play, but we can’t rule that out until we get the cause of death back from Huntsville,” he said.

“We think we know, but I can’t make that determination what it might have been.”

DeKalb County deputies continue to interview people, and are working with Marshall County DHR and other Marshall County investigators.

Harris said Tarwater spent time in the custody of DHR in several counties, but not DeKalb.

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