Macon County Chronicle

Possible Double Homicide on Trammel Creek Rd.

On Friday morning, December 19th, the Macon County Sheriffs Department responded to the scene of a possible double homicide at 840 Trammel Creek Road, after receiving a 911 call around 8:45 a.m., where they discovered the bodies of 64-year-old Albert “Sonny” Phillips and 53-year-old David Rittenberry, with both men victims of apparent gun shot wounds.

“After evaluating the crime scene, we began treating the situation as a possible double homicide,” said Macon County Sheriff Mark Gammons. “I contacted the TBI and the District Attorney’s office for further assistance in the ongoing investigation.”

While Gammons is unable to release the cause of death until an autopsy report is completed, he did acknowledge that one victim was found inside the mobile home and the other outside. Several weapons were found on the property and the bodies, which had been there for at least five or six hours, were transported to the medical examiners office in Nashville.

“We are conducting interviews at this time,” Gammons noted, “and we will release more information as soon as possible.”

According to a close relative of Mr. Phillips, he didn’t have any enemies that they knew off and he had lived at that same location for over 30 years. Sonny, who was in bad health at the time of the shooting after a heart attack last year, and David Rittenberry, who was living in a small camper on the property, had been friends for over ten years.

Those responding to the scene included the Macon County Sheriffs Department, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Macon County EMS, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, Assistant District Attorney Justin Harris, Macon County Medical Examiner Steve Jones, Channel 4 News, Channel 5 News, Westmoreland Observer and the Macon County Chronicle.

If you have any information regarding the deaths of Sonny Phillips and David Rittenberry, contact the Macon County Sheriffs Department at 666-3325.

Albert Lee Phillips, better known as “Sonny” of the Trammel Creek Community in Macon County, is survived by daughters, Dawn Moss and Melissa Norton both of Florida; sons, Clay Phillips & wife Barbara of Kansas, and Chris Phillips of Florida; sisters, Tereasa Williams, Joyce Bryson, Evelyn Carter, and Sheila Ricker; brothers, Jackie Phillips, Bill Phillips, and Morris Phillips; 13 grandchildren and five great grandchildren. The family chose cremation and they are planning a private memorial service at a later time. Alexander Funeral Home, in Lafayette, was in charge of arrangements.

Funeral arrangements for David Rittenberry were unknown at presstime.