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Local News

  • 'Perfect storm' contributed to ash spill

    By TERRI LIKENS

    tlikens@roanecounty.com

    A "slime" layer that took investigators more than two months to find and the angle of storage cells walls  contributed to the massive release of 5.4 million cubic yards of fly ash on the Swan Pond peninsula and Emory River, according to an engineering analysis of the disaster.

  • Officials still grapple with jail issues

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Many people are watching dollars closely in today’s economy. Jail inspector Barry Suttles said that’s why he expected to field some tough questions from county officials last Wednesday.  

    “Everybody is worried about the number of dollars,” Suttles said. “I understand that, and I respect that.”

  • Economy too much for longtime antiques dealers

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    jraymond@roanecounty.com

    A store in downtown Rockwood is filled wall to wall with items from the past — and each has its own story.

    Old Tennessee license plates, hats, clocks, old signs, pictures and other paraphernalia adorn the walls of C&B Trading Post, where brothers Bill Wright and Charles Carter buy, sell and trade antiques.

  • Patton ouster trial under way

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    jraymond@roanecounty.com

    Officials accused Roane County Constable Mark Patton of misconduct as the ouster trial of the beleaguered constable started Monday.

    Roane County Tom McFarland opened the trial saying that Patton has performed misconduct in his office as constable by threatening police officers, elected officials and citizens and also performing an illegal stop.

    “After this stop, there was a period of escalation,” McFarland said.

  • Patton case in judge's hands

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    jraymond@roanecounty.com

    After hearing two full days of testimony in the ouster trial of Roane County Constable Mark Patton, the outcome is in a judge’s hands.

    Judge Russell Simmons Jr. said Tuesday he will render an opinion as soon as possible.

    Roane County Attorney Tom McFarland and District Attorney General Russell Johnson presented the case and cited several instances of what they described as misconduct on behalf of Patton.

  • Fly ash to hit rail, highways

    From STAFF REPORTS

    Ash-filled trains will soon be on the roll to Alabama, and TVA will soon begin test runs of trucking ash to area landfills.

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved the TVA’s plan to transfer coal ash from the Emory River to the Arrowhead Landfill in Perry County, Ala., despite some complaints the ash is being dumped in an area with

    an impoverished, minority population.

  • Trial over slain grandmother begins

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Something bad happened to Kathleen Taylor.

    Prosecutor Frank Harvey and defense attorney Bruce Poston agree on that much.

    However, the two men differ about the involvement of David William Cosgriff.

    Opening statements began in Cosgriff’s first-degree murder trial on Tuesday.

    Harvey told the jury that Cosgriff is responsible for Taylor’s death.

  • Kingston dips into reserves to make budget

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    jraymond@roanecounty.com

    No employee raises and no property tax increase has some of the Kingston City Council feeling torn about their final budget.

    Although they tried to find ways to fund a pay raise, they were unable without taking more money out of their reserve fund or looking at raising taxes.

    “Because of the economy, we didn’t want to add a property tax increase,” Councilwoman Teresa Ferguson said.

  • Constable Patton removed from office

    Roane County Constable Mark Patton has lost his office as a result of a judge's decision, according to District Attorney General Russell Johnson.

    Johnson said he received word Wednesday afternoon that Judge Russell Simmons Jr. has decided that testimony in last week's ouster trial was enough to warrant the embattled constable's removal from office.

  • Mark Patton removed from office

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    For years people have been saying Mark Patton was unfit to hold the office of Roane County constable.

    On Wednesday, a judge agreed. In an eight-page ruling, Circuit Court Judge Russell Simmons has determined that Patton should be ousted from office.

    “I think justice has been served,” Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton said Wednesday from the courthouse.