Local News

  • Holiday comes early at church

    Dozens of visitors enjoyed an early Thanksgiving meal on Saturday, courtesy of Trinity Baptist Church in Harriman.

    “We wanted to connect with our community,” said Pastor Tim McMichael.

    “We, as a church, wanted to see our community,” he added. “... and let them know we love them.”

    McMichael was happy with the turnout for their first Thanksgiving offering.

    “We didn’t know what to expect,” he admitted. “These are precious people. It is really great to have them here.”

  • Organ donors, prelit trees make ‘most thankful’ list

    Thanksgiving is one holiday that is actually instructive.

    While being thankful should come naturally every day, it is especially encouraged the fourth Thursday in November.

    We asked folks in the community what they are specifically thankful for this year, and received a variety of answers.

  • Buying at home helps out Roane

    Folks looking for Black Friday sales can go far and wide to find a bargain.

    Roane County’s Chamber of Commerce, however, wants people to know they can find a lot of those deals within the county lines.

    “There are so many things people can buy in Roane County that they don’t even think about,” Chamber Member Services Coordinator Lindsey Stevens said.

    “And it helps Roane County in so many ways. Fifty percent of all local sales tax goes directly to the schools.”

  • Harriman’s flakes stay up for winter

    Last year when Harriman officials decided to leave some of their holiday lights up long after the Christmas season, some may have thought the city employees were just lagging.

    Not so, according to Mayor Chris Mason, who said once again part of the lights, namely the snowflake ones, will remain through winter.

    “After Christmas the angels will come down, but the snowflakes will stay up,” he explained.

    “They are snowflakes, so they are winter lights.”

  • Big bash marking judge’s retirement

    A retirement party is scheduled at the Roane County Courthouse on Dec. 18 for 9th Judicial District Criminal Court Judge E. Eugene Eblen.

    The party will be held from 1 to 6 p.m. on the second floor in the criminal courtroom.

    Eblen’s bailiff, Don Gooch, said he expects a big turnout.

    The district is made up of Roane, Loudon, Meigs and Morgan counties.

    “He’s got a lot of friends,” Gooch said.

    Eblen took over as criminal court judge for the district on Sept. 1, 1978.

  • False imprisonment, assault charges dropped

    Charges of aggravated assault and false imprisonment have been dismissed against Kelly Vance.

    The 37-year-old Rockwood man was arrested on those charges on May 30.

    According to the court records, the charges were dismissed on Nov. 9 on a motion by the state.

    The alleged victim in the case was Vance’s girlfriend, Kelsey Erickson. Court records said she did not want to prosecute.

    Vance, according to court records, has to pay a $150 attorney appointment fee by Dec. 7. He could face contempt proceedings for not doing so.

  • OS official wants litterbugs to pay

    Oliver Springs Alderman Omer Cox would like to clean up the town, but he is tired of being the one to do it.

    He told the Board of Mayor and Alderman Thursday during the group’s regular monthly meeting that he had periodically been picking up trash at various locations, and he would like to see the police chief look into purchasing surveillance cameras to catch perpetrators leaving their garbage.

    “I can pick up litter by the truck load,” he said. “If they are going to litter, we should make them pay for it.”

  • Reporter's Notebook: Could Leon Houston be home for Christmas?

    The maximum sentence Leon Houston faces for sending a threat via interstate commerce is five years.

    A federal jury found him guilty of the charge last week.

    Houston has already served nearly three years, so U.S. District Court Judge Pamela Reeves could chose to let him out with time served at his sentencing hearing scheduled for Dec. 21.

    If he does get out of jail, there will be some things he won’t be able to do because of the conviction, most notably possessing a firearm.

    Convicted felons are not allowed to do that.

  • $20,000 allotted to help assessor

    The Roane County Property Assessor’s Office won’t be without help when it tries to defend UT-Battelle’s appraisal to an administrative judge.

    Earlier this month, the Roane County Commission voted to spend $20,000 to allow the assessor’s office to hire outside help.

    “I don’t see that we have any choice in this issue,” Commissioner  Darryl Meadows said. “Regrettable.”

    UT-Battelle is the management contractor for the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

  • BACK IN CUSTODY: Escapee apprehended on New Hope Road

    Adam Phillips’ time on the lam lasted a little more than a week.

    The Roane County Jail inmate who walked off a work detail at the courthouse on Nov. 12 was apprehended Friday at a home on New Hope Road.

    “He complied with everything we asked him,” Roane County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Tim Phillips said.

    “He came to the front door and opened the front door and we took him into custody.”

    Adam Phillips, 35, arrived back at the Roane County Jail in a police cruiser just before noon.