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Local News

  • Man rolls dice with guilty plea

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Instead of taking his chances with a jury, Stanley Marsellies Brown decided to leave his fate up to a judge.

    Brown pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in Roane County Criminal Court on Wednesday.

    Assistant District Attorney General Frank Harvey said Brown pleaded guilty blind, which means there was no agreement on a sentence between his lawyer and prosecutors.

    “The judge decides everything,” Harvey said.

  • TVA official seeks to restore trust

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    A day after a scathing report from the TVA Office of the Inspector General, TVA officials have begun trying to rehab a reputation that’s been severely damaged in the eyes of the public.  

    At Wednesday’s long-term recovery committee meeting, TVA environmental executive Anda Ray made this entreaty:

  • Pipe bomb found in home of murder-for-hire suspect

    From staff reports

    A burglary call led to the discovery of a pipe bomb at a home on Chilhowee Street in Harriman on Friday.

    Harriman Police Chief Randy Heidle said the residence belonged to Gregory Lynn Williford, who was recently arrested in a murder-for-hire plot.

    Heidle said the Knoxville Bomb Squad, ATF, Harriman Fire Department and Roane County Sheriff’s Office were all notified.

  • Houstons shed monitoring bracelets

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    The electronic monitoring bracelets brothers Rocky and Leon Houston had been wearing since their release on bond in March could soon be back in possession of the monitoring company. 

    “The bracelets are off,” Rocky said Friday. “They came off, I’m saying, about 9, 9:30 this morning, something like that.”

    Rocky said they were going to ship the bracelets back to Tracking Solutions LLC by mail.

  • Liquor stores may be open in Rockwood soon

    By JENNIFER RAYMOND

    jraymond@roanecounty.com

    The city that was a spot on the infamous Thunder Road will have two liquor stores opening their doors soon.

    These two liquor stores would be the first allowed in Rockwood and expect to be open by Labor Day, according to city recorder Jim Hines.

    In the November 2008 election, referendums for the allowance of package liquor stores and liquor by the drink were placed on the ballot after petitions were circulated and gained the required signatures.

  • Ash is 'hazardous' when in transport

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Whether trucks or trains, Roane County Emergency Management Director Howie Rose said it’s common for things in transit to have signs that denote potential hazards.

    Such is the case with the trains shipping ash from TVA’s Kingston Fossil Plant to a landfill in Perry County, Ala.

  • Harriman officials OK'd to live elsewhere

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    csimpson@roanecounty.com

    Harriman has been in violation of its own charter, having multiple department heads residing outside the city limits.

    Now, after Harriman City Council unanimously approved charter changes that came back from the state assembly last month, that is no longer an issue.

    Among department heads living outside the city are Harriman Police Chief Randy Heidle.

    The council approved the changes, which included the deletion of a residency requirement, last month.

  • Despite disaster, TVA still plans wet storage of gypsum

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Despite recent critical revelations about its wet ash storage, TVA is still planning to use a wet system to store gypsum at the Kingston Fossil Plant.     

    “The plans are to put the gypsum in the gypsum pond, and it is currently a wet storage,” TVA Environmental Executive Anda Ray said.

  • Ridenour cleared of charges in relation to Hyatte escape

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    dlawrence@roanecounty.com

    Randall Ridenour may have violated Tennessee Department of Correction's policy, but his actions didn't constitute a criminal offense.

    Because of that, Roane County Criminal Court Judge E. Eugene Eblen dismissed a facilitation charge against him on Wednesday. 

    “This case shows a violation of policy, which is an administration situation,” Eblen said. “But it does not in the court's opinion rise to a criminal aspect, although it could have.”

  • Kingston assault case turns into murder investigation

    STAFF REPORTS

    An aggravated-assault case has turned into a homicide investigation for the Kingston Police Department. Seventeen-year-old Tyler Webb, who was shot at his home on Third Street on June 30, died earlier this week, according to Kingston Police Chief Jim Washam.

    “He had been in the hospital in critical condition in ICU up until two days ago, and he finally passed away due to complications,” he said.

    No arrests have been made in the case.