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Local News

  • Confusion reigns after Houston verdict; lawyer says retrial likely

    By TERRI LIKENS

    rceditor@bellsouth.net

    Neither side in the double-murder trial of Rocky Houston will find resolution in their Christmas stockings.

    A jury on Friday afternoon found Houston not guilty of some charges and could not agree on others.

    Judge James “Buddy” Scott did not immediately declare it a mistrial as he did when jurors could not agree in the trial last summer of Rocky's brother, Leon.

  • TVA mudslide forces Swan Pond evacuation

    BY TERRI LIKENS

    rceditor@bellsouth.net

    About a dozen homes were evacuated overnight after a dike collapsed, spilling a thick sludge of water and ash near the Kingston Steam Plant. Homes affected are in the area of Swan Pond Road and Swan Pond Circle.

  • TVA impoundment breaks, moving homes, covering roads, railway

    By TERRI LIKENS

    rceditor@bellsouth.net

    A Roane County man took a wild ride when his home was pushed off its foundation and into the road by a wall of sludge from a TVA containment pond.

    That Swan Pond area home near TVA’s Kingston Fossil Plant was one of about a dozen residences that were inundated with a thick sludge from a fly ash retention  pond that collapsed just before 1 a.m. Monday.

    It was a rude awakening on a night where temperatures dropped to 11 degrees.

  • Emory River closed by spill

    By TERRI LIKENS

    rceditor@bellsouth.net

    The U.S. Coast Guard closed part of the Emory River Tuesday because of sludge and debris from Monday’s TVA retention pond break.

    TVA President Tom Kilgore, in a news conference Tuesday, released inspection reports that showed two minor breaches in the failed retention pond — one in 2003 and another in 2006.

  • Bredesen: State will be looking over TVA's shoulder

     

  • Fall-out over ash spill continues

    By TERRI LIKENS

    rceditor@bellsouth.net

    It’s no secret that Roane County defines itself by its waterfront.

    Although a few other counties make a similar claim, Roane County officials declare theirs has more waterfront miles than any other Tennessee county.

    Since the TVA fly-ash impoundment break on Dec. 22, that waterfront has changed — and not just near the coal-fired Kingston Fossil Plant where the break occurred.

  • Watts Bar Belle to leave Kingston

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    rcraymond@bellsouth.net

    It’s official — the Watts Bar Belle is leaving its Kingston dock.

    That move was also the basis of a heated debate between two Kingston City Council members at Tuesday’s special-called meeting.

    Despite earlier claims that the move was due to the ash spill, general manager Francie Harkenrider claims poor business in general is more to blame.

  • Cawood not censured for sex encounter

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    Repulsive, inappropriate and outrageous.

    That’s how a hearing panel for the Board of Professional Responsibility described the behavior of Kingston attorney Chris Cawood.

    However, the panel concluded the behavior did not violate any rules of professional conduct.

    The Board of Professional Responsibility, which acts as a watchdog agency for the Tennessee Supreme Court, brought the action against Cawood for dealings he had with Lisa Steinmetz.

  • Brockovich: ‘Don’t be afraid to speak up’

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    rcraymond@bellsouth.net

    With a team of lawyers, doctors and researchers by her side, well-known activist Erin Brockovich spoke to an audience of about 200 in Roane State Community College’s gymnasium on Friday night about the catastrophic fly ash spill at TVA’s Kingston Fossil Plant on Dec. 22.

    Brockovich said she came to Roane County after receiving hundreds of e-mails from people asking her to visit.

    “I’m here on behalf of a community concerned with a tragedy,” she told the crowd.

  • TVA relocating affected residents

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    The new fishing pole Charli Michaels’ 5-year-old son got for Christmas hasn’t gotten much use.

    The fly ash spill has made young Anthony afraid to put it in the water, Michaels said. 

    “He says water’s not his favorite color,” she said.

    Her son stood beside her when she addressed TVA officials during a public hearing on the fly ash spill at the Roane County Courthouse Monday night.