Summer Wells’ father arrested in court Monday on violation of probation charges

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(WJHL) — The father of missing 5-year-old Summer Wells appeared at an arraignment hearing Monday morning following his DUI arrest over the weekend.

Wells, who was booked in and out on an own recognizance bond, was later seen by News Channel 11 crews leaving the jail Monday morning.

The 9 a.m. appearance in Judge Daniel Boyd’s courtroom led to Donald Wells’ arrest for violation of probation. Wells was walked out of the courtroom by Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson.

Wells was in the hearing to address charges received on Saturday, Oct. 29 for driving under the influence, among other charges.

Court documents obtained by News Channel 11 state that Wells was placed on probation after he was convicted in April 2021 of possession of a handgun by an intoxicated person.

Around 9:20 a.m., Sheriff Lawson entered the courtroom. Another officer placed Wells under arrest for the alleged violation of probation. Following his arrest, Wells approached the podium.

Wells mentioned in court that he was unsure how he could keep up with the court expenses along with maintaining child support for his sons.

He followed this statement and said that the blood work from Saturday night’s arrest would “tell all” and added that he could represent himself.

The judge asked Wells when his last day of work was, to which Wells replied saying he has been working on his house and “things for welfare” to get the boys back. He included that he and Summer’s mother, Candus Bly, launched a YouTube channel in the hopes of finding Summer.

Wells added that he was going through “a lot of things” and “a lot of heartache” and would “plead mercy from the court.”

Boyd appointed Wells a public defender and reset the hearing to Feb. 7 at 1 p.m. to await Wells’ blood results from his DUI arrest Saturday.

He faces the following charges for Saturday night’s incident:

  • Expired vehicle registration
  • Open container
  • Financial responsibility law
  • Driving on roadways laned for traffic

This is a developing story. Stay updated on-air and online at WJHL.com.

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