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Local News

  • Rockwood loses councilman

    Rockwood City Councilman Bill Thompson lost a long battle with cancer Sunday morning.

    He didn’t lose his wit and charm during his health struggles, and he stayed positive during his treatments, rarely missing a Rockwood City Council meeting.
    “Even when he was so sick, he’d say, ‘I’m going to get to feeling better.’” said City Recorder Becky Ruppe.
    Thompson was even positive when he recently attended a finance meeting and was encouraged to return home.

  • Motions hearing delayed in murder case

    A conflict has led to the appointment of a new lawyer for accused murderer Shawn Smoot, reports Assistant District Attorney General Bill Reedy.

    Smoot is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Brooke Nicole Morris. Her body was found at Blair Road and Old Blair Road on Oct. 15, 2011. Police said she had been shot.
    Last year Assistant Public Defender Walter Johnson was appointed to represent Smoot.
    “The public defender determined their office had a conflict,” Reedy said.

  • ‘No!’ said to tax hike

    Should residents have to pay more in property taxes to make up for a Roane County Schools shortfall caused by cuts in state funding?
    The county’s budget committee answered that question with a resounding “no” on Monday, voting to keep the county’s property tax rate at $2.18 per $100 valuation for the 2013-14 fiscal year.

  • Cousin county needs help from severe flooding

    Roane County, West Va., was devastated by flooding last week. More than 100 homes were damaged or destroyed.
    Roane Countians in Tennessee are collecting cash donations or Walmart gift cards to assist those Roane Countians in rebuilding their lives.
    Donation drop-off areas are as follows:
    • Harriman: Ellis Surplus and Salvage at 301 Roane St.
    • Kingston: Roane County Courthouse, County Executives Office.
    • Oliver Springs: James Brummett Insurance, 104 Kingston Ave.

  • Starved child hearing put off

    A motion hearing for Matthew Dotson has been rescheduled for next month.
    Dotson and his wife, Amanda, are charged with first-degree murder. They allegedly starved their 2-year-old son, Clifford, to death.
    Matthew Dotson’s attorney, Joseph Lodato of Knoxville, filed a motion to withdraw from the case because of his client’s “failure to fulfill contractual obligations,” the motion said.
    Assistant District Attorney General Bill Reedy said Lodato appeared in court on Monday, but Matthew Dotson was a no-show.

  • Calfee wins for Michael Dunn Center

    State Rep. Kent Calfee, R-Kingston, was among the 46 legislators who won a total of $8,300 in donations for charities in their communities during the Tennessee Health Care Association’s annual “Partnering for Charity” event.
    Calfee won $150 for The Michael Dunn Center.
    The lawmakers took turns spinning a giant wheel to earn contributions to charities of their choice throughout the state, including schools, churches, senior centers and other organizations.

  • Bolling tackles first council session

    The June 11 Kingston City Council meeting was new City Manager David Bolling’s first full session, and he was met with banter and some early kudos from department heads and council members.
    Bolling responded in kind, and even brought some good news to the table in his first official council report.

  • Harriman marks ‘12 years in a row’ of no tax increases

    Harriman taxpayers won’t have the city dipping into their pockets for more money for city coffers.
    Harriman City Council approved first reading of a budget last week that includes keeping the tax rate at $1.20 per $100 valuation.
    Council members will likely discuss the budget in a June 25 workshop before considering final reading at the first meeting of July.
    “This makes about 12 years in a row we haven’t raised them,” said Harriman Mayor Chris Mason recently.

  • Blaze blows out window of house

    Harriman Fire Department responded to a structure fire at 1121 Georgia St. Tuesday afternoon. “Upon arrival it had an extremely large amount of smoke showing,” said Fire Chief Brad Goss. “Finally, when the fire came through it had actually blown the window out of one side of the structure.”

  • No suppression for Leon Houston statements

    A federal magistrate is recommending that Leon Houston’s suppression motions be denied.
    Houston is charged in U.S. District Court with possession of a firearm while being an unlawful user of a controlled substance and using a telephone to threaten to kill attorney James Logan.
    He allegedly admitted to “getting high” and smoking “wacky tobacco” when he was questioned by law enforcement agents on Jan. 11.
    Houston claimed the agents had no right to be on his property and that his alleged statements should be suppressed.