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Local News

  • Leon Houston calls federal charges 'smokescreen'

    Leon Houston is on trial for allegedly possessing firearms while being an unlawful user of a controlled substance.
    He told a federal jury, however, the charge is a smokescreen to hide what’s really going on in America.

    “Our civil liberties are in dire jeopardy,” he said. “I just hope that some of you people on this jury will see through this.”

  • Jim Henry’s a Good Guy for the second time

    Tennessee Department of Children’s Service’s Commissioner Jim Henry has been singled out for special recognition by the Tennessee Women’s Political Collaborative of Tennessee.
    Each year, the group honors men who have demonstrated their support of women with its Good Guy Awards.
    Kingston’s Henry, a 2005 Good Guy Award winner, has been tapped again.

  • Ten Mile man charged with attempted murder

    The Roane County grand jury added a charge of attempted first-degree murder against Daniel Phillip Thompson, a Ten Mile man accused of severely beating his girlfriend.
    The grand jury also indicted Thompson for aggravated assault and especially aggravated kidnapping when it met last month.
    Thompson’s alleged crimes occurred between July 12-17.
    Tiffany McDavid told Roane County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Murphy that Thompson began beating her because he thought she was unfaithful.   

  • Randolph pleads not guilty

    Accused robber Mark Andrew Randolph pleaded not guilty at his arraignment in U.S. District Court last week.
    Randolph faces five counts of robbery, five counts of using a firearm during a crime and one count of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.
    The court appointed attorney Jonathan Moffatt to represent him in the case.
    Randolph is accused of robbing a Shell Favorite Market in Sweetwater, a Subway in Lenoir City, a Subway in Knoxville, a Sonic in Knoxville and Rocky Top Market on Bluff Road in Kingston.

  • Kingston to consider policy to regulate cold-pill sales

    Kingston City Council plans to discuss an ordinance at its Tuesday workshop that would regulate the sale of ephedrine- and pseudoephedrine-related products within the city limits.
    Cold and allergy-relief medications that contain ephedrine and pseudoephedrine can be used in the illegal manufacture of methamphetamine.
    “I’m still for trying to get a prescription requirement for pseudoephedrine,” District Attorney General Russell Johnson said.

  • BIG RED DEBUT

    Rockwood Fire Department welcomed its new Sutphen G-2 pumper truck earlier this month. Community supporters turned  out for the unveiling. “This is a $410,000 investment for Rockwood,” Mayor James Watts said.

    Rockwood Assistant Fire Chief Matt Crabtree, center, holds a teary-eyed Fire Chief Mike Wertz as the new fire truck rolled into town. Wertz was overwhelmed with the support he had been given by the city of Rockwood. The new truck will replace another vehicle in the department’s aging fleet.

  • Authorities still focused on killing

    Another Roane County grand jury session has come and gone, and still no one has been charged in the 2012 shooting death of Russel Charles Blevins.
    Sheriff Jack Stockton said the case remains under investigation.
    “We’ve definitely not forgotten about it,” he said.
    According to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, family members found Blevins, 85, dead of multiple gunshot wounds in his home at 138 Hart Orchard Road, Kingston, on Aug. 12, 2012.

  • Airport Road to reopen soon

    A popular shortcut from Cumberland and Morgan counties to Rockwood may soon reopen.
    “We are actually in the process of trying to open Airport Road back up,” said Roane County Road Superintendent Dennis Ferguson.
    Ferguson said he hopes to have the road open in the next couple of weeks, but completion of work may postpone the opening until the first of December.
    “We took the asphalt top layer down to the dirt,” Ferguson said of the process to mend the sinking roadway.

  • Leon Houston federal trial to start today

    After multiple delays, Leon Houston could finally face a federal jury this week.
    As of late Friday, his trial on a firearms charge was still listed on the U.S. District Court calendar.
    According to the calendar, the trial is scheduled to start today – Monday – at 9 a.m. in the federal courthouse in Knoxville.
    Houston was previously scheduled to stand trial in March, August and September, but all those trial dates were postponed.
     He’s charged with possessing a firearm while being an unlawful user of a controlled substance.

  • SPONGEBOB IN ROCKWOOD?

    Two-year-old Kameron Pelfrey, dressed as SpongeBob SquarePants, is among the trick-or-treaters frequenting Rockwood’s Kingston Avenue on Halloween night. Superheroes, princesses and those wearing spooky garb to reflect the season are among those scooping up the treats. Look for more little goblins and sweethearts in Wednesday’s issue of the Roane County News.