Local News

  • Murder trial a go April 3 — maybe

    The Ralph O’Neal murder trial is on the docket for the current Roane County Criminal Court term, but prosecutor Bill Reedy isn’t overly optimistic.  

    “At this point, it’s a yes, but you got to understand that this case involves multiple people who are in federal custody,” he said. “Getting these people back from the feds for trial purposes is like trying to orchestrate the thing (sequester) that’s going on in Congress right now.”  

  • Houston wants jury pool of 500

    His work may not be elegant, but Rocky Houston has been moving forward with self-representation in his federal firearms case.

    He has filed several handwritten motions with the U.S. District Court in Knoxville. He wants to enlarge the jury pool, recuse U.S. Magistrate C. Clifford Shirley Jr., and suppress video evidence in the case.

    A federal grand jury indicted Houston in January on 14 counts of being a felon in possession of firearms. He faces up to 140 years in prison.

  • Vic King joins school board

    It took a change of the playbook, but now it’s official.

    Former Roane County High School football coach Vic King is a Roane County Board of Education member.

    On Monday, the Roane County Commission approved King filling the remainder of the seat of Marjorie Earick of District 5/6, who was elected to a four-year term last August.

    Earick recently decided to step down because of her husband’s illness.

  • Two housefires, two dogs saved

    Harriman Fire Department stayed busy last weekend, assisting Midtown Volunteer Fire Department on a house fire around 5:30 a.m. Saturday and working a second house fire in West Hills in Harriman on Sunday.

    When Harriman firefighters arrived at the scene at 212 Ben Henry Road, in Midtown’s service area, the fire was raging.

    “The roof had already collapsed in,” said Capt. Preston Hamby.

    Hamby and firefighter Jeff Cunningham saved two family pets in the Midtown fire.

  • Harriman Church of God prepares for big move

    Harriman Church of God’s dream of relocating to its new facility is moving quickly.

    The church, which closed on the property that was once home to EET and Dagger Canoe in Midtown on Dec. 10, 2012, already has moved into the office space and what will be the fellowship hall and kitchen of the building.

    Church members hope to begin having services there in June.

  • Not the end for Tiger Haven battle

    Is the Tiger Haven litigation over?

    Attorney James “Buddy” Scott let out a resounding “no” when asked that question Thursday afternoon.

    His firm, Pemberton and Scott, represents a group of East Roane County residents who filed a $10 million lawsuit against Tiger Haven in 2011.

    Tiger Haven countersued for $2.5 million, but the lawsuit was dismissed last week because of an agreed-upon order signed by the parties.

    Scott indicated the move was part of a legal strategy.

  • Developer's property tax appeals may be dropped for failure to pay

    Developer Matt Caldwell is in danger of having his property appeals dismissed for failing to pay property taxes.
    Caldwell, who has developed high-end properties in Kingston, has appeals pending with the State Board of Equalization for the 2010, 2011 and 2012 tax years.

    Barry Cofer, a deputy assessor with the Roane County Property Assessor’s Office, filed a motion to dismiss because of Caldwell’s unpaid taxes. The issue was discussed during a status conference at the Roane County Courthouse last week.   

  • Annexation: Harriman councilman wants more of Midtown

    The Midtown interchange along Interstate 40 and Hwy. 70 was a big investment for the city of Harriman.

    Harriman’s work on the infrastructure converted the area from a once-desolate exit off a busy interstate into a major area of commerce that includes Kroger and Lowe’s. It’s now home to a state-of the-art hospital, medical offices and a couple of businesses under construction.

    Also benefiting, Harriman Councilman J.D. Sampson points out, are businesses outside the city limits who are drawing on increased traffic.

  • Five sentenced in elk poaching

    Five people, including three from Oliver Springs, were sentenced after reaching a plea agreement in connection with the poaching death of an elk in Morgan County General Sessions Court, according to the Tennessee Wildlife resources Agency.

    Kenneth T. Kelly, Oliver Springs, Austin C. Woodall, Oliver Springs, Steven H. Daugherty, Petros, Samantha Leann McColl, Oliver Springs, and Donovan Cade Godwin, Coalfield, all pleaded guilty to charges placed after an investigation by Morgan County wildlife officer, Travis Buchanan.  

  • State’s nursing homes for veterans get nod

    Tennessee Department of Veterans Affairs Commissioner Many-Bears Grinder and the Tennessee State Veterans Homes Board issued a statement celebrating the U.S. News & World Report 2013 that names the Tennessee State Veterans Homes in Knoxville and Murfreesboro among the best in the country.

    The magazine rated more than 15,000 nursing homes using data research on nursing home safety, health inspection and staffing.

    The source of the data originates from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.