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Local News

  • Late court becoming norm for hefty caseloads

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    One day continues to stand out from others at the Roane County Courthouse.

    “Mondays are getting horrible,” General Sessions Court Judge Dennis Humphrey said.

    That was evident last week. Humphrey’s courtroom also serves as the meeting place for the Roane County Commission. He was still holding court when commissioners showed up for their 7 p.m. meeting, so officials stood out in the hallway.

  • TVA trucks rankle residents again

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    A misunderstanding or an about-face on a promise.

    That issue came up last week between TVA and some residents in Swan Pond.  

    TVA is doing utility work in the area, and residents said that led to heavy truck traffic on Swan Pond Circle past Swan Harbour subdivision.

    “The problem we’re having is they promised us they would not bring truck traffic this way,” resident Andy Avel said.  

  • Mystery truck nearly kills man

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    The family of James Kirkland said he’s spent the last few weeks in the hospital.

    Someone else is responsible for putting him there, they said, but finding that person has proven difficult so far.

    According to a Tennessee Highway Patrol crash report, Kirkland was traveling east on Harriman Hwy. on June 30 when another vehicle, described as a log truck, crossed the center line and struck his left side mirror.

  • Miss Roxie, 107-year-old Rockwood columnist, dies

    By TERRI LIKENS

    tlikens@roanecounty.com

    One of Roane County’s most beloved figures, 107-year-old “Miss Roxie” McClendon of Rockwood, died Tuesday morning.

    As the author of the “Eureka” column for The Rockwood Times, she was one of the oldest newspaper columnists in the world.

    “She had the most peaceful, natural death,” Tina Crisp said of her grand-aunt.

  • Dead dog owner takes settlement from groomer, but threatens to picket

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    The civil matter between Regina Sutton and Lorri Case was settled in court.

    However, the feud may not be over.

    Sutton said she plans to protest outside L.A. Paws, Case’s pet- grooming business on Gateway Avenue in Rockwood, on Saturday.

    “I’m going to do everything I can to put her out of business,” Sutton said.

    Sutton’s dog, a 3-year-old schnauzer named Brunswick, died at L.A. Paws on June 11.

    “She killed my dog,” Sutton said.

  • Kingston considering body art proposal

    By TERRI LIKENS

    tlikens@roanecounty.com

    How to handle employee tattoos and body piercings was a prickly issue at Kingston City Council’s July workshop meeting this week.

    City Manager Jim Pinkerton brought up the issue as part of potential changes to the dress and appearance part of Kingston’s personnel manual.

  • Candidates look for answers at forum

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Ron Woody has spent years advising county governments how to do business.

    Mike Farmer wanted to know if Woody thought his consultant work qualified him to be Roane County executive.

    “Mr. Woody, you have indicated that you have the best experience,” Farmer asked during a candidates forum on Thursday.

    “Is it your position, then, that advising somebody how to do a job is better than actually doing the job yourself?”

  • Kingston dedicates pavilion to employees

    By TERRI LIKENS

    tlikens@roanecounty.com

    It was a classic Willie Gordon comment.

    After a glowing commendation from Kingston Mayor Troy Beets for fire chief’s leading role in building the new pavilion at City Park, Beets declared that the kitchen will forever be known as the Willie Gordon Kitchen.

    “At least it’s not the bathroom,” Gordon drawled in response.

    The pavilion was opened and dedicated at ceremonies Friday that were tied in with the annual Kingston city employees annual picnic.

  • Bumper marijuana plant crop eradicated in Roane County

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Instead of winding up on the streets, somebody’s yield of marijuana ended up in the hands of authorities on Tuesday.

    “I would say that we made it a bad day for a pot grower in Tennessee,” TBI Special Agent in Charge T.J. Jordan said.

    Jordan oversees the Governor’s Task Force on Marijuana Eradication. The task force discovered approximately 2,100 marijuana plants in a secluded area South of the River.

  • Harriman wants more from county

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    csimpson@roanecounty.com

    Harriman Councilman J.D. Sampson isn’t afraid to ask for more.

    He wants to ask the county to fund three police officer and three firefighter positions, and proposed as much at a recent Harriman City Council workshop.

    “We don’t get nearly enough for our county taxes,” Sampson said.

    “That sounds like metro government, J.D.,” Harriman Mayor Chris Mason said.

    Sampson disagreed.