Today's News

  • $5.45 million awarded in civil trial finding Houstons liable for ridealong's death

    A Cumberland County jury has awarded $5.45 million to the mother of a former lawman gunned down in May 2006 by brothers Rocky and Leon Houston.

    "No amount of money can touch the hole in my heart," said Pat Brown of Rockwood. "Money can't do that."

    The jury awarded Brown $5 million in punitive damages less than an hour after finding the Houston brothers liable for the May 2006 shooting death of her son, Mike Brown. At that time, the jury awarded Brown $450,000 in compensatory damages.

  • Testimony in Houston civil case begins

    Murfreesboro attorney Mitchell Ferguson is used to facing litigants on the opposing side.
    That wasn’t the case on Monday.
    Brothers Rocky and Leon Houston failed to show for the start of the civil trial in which they are being sued for the death of Mike Brown. 
    “I’ve never tried a case with no opponent,” said Ferguson, who represents Brown’s mother, Pat Brown.

  • One of Harriman’s finest retiring from police force

    Harriman Police Department has gotten a lot of use out of Dugan, the sweet-natured and proficient narcotic dog.
    “He’s been with the police department for about 11 years,” said Police Chief Randy Heidle.
    The department recently retired Dugan and is getting a new $10,000 dog with the help of K9s4Cops, a Texas nonprofit that assists police departments with funding for police dogs.
    Heidle said he knew it was about time to retire Dugan, who was born in 2001.

  • Suspect stunned, pulled from closet

    From staff reports
    Zachery Allen Collins managed to elude police on April 2. He wasn’t so lucky last Wednesday.
    According to a Roane County Sheriff’s Office Incident report, officers to went to 937 Post Oak Valley Road to arrest Collins on outstanding warrants for theft, reckless driving, reckless endangerment and evading arrest.

  • Famed Ariz. sheriff holds suspect for Roane

    Roane County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Tim Phillips and Deputy Wes Stooksbury traveled to Phoenix last week.   
    The two lawmen weren’t there to sightsee, however. They went to pick up a prisoner from one of the jails in Maricopa County, Ariz.
    James. A. Tiegs was wanted in Roane County for a sexual offender registration violation and aggravated sexual battery.
    “We flew out Wednesday,” Phillips said. “Stayed the night, got up and went and got our prisoner and flew back.”

  • Aytes among school director finalists

    After three days of intensive interviews with 10 candidates, Roane County Schools administrator Gary Aytes has made the cut as one of three finalists for the director of schools post.

    The Roane County Board of Education chose Aytes, Donald Andrews and John Green are the finalists for the position, which will be vacated with the retirement of Toni McGriff this summer.

    “We had a bunch of good people to choose from,” school board member Frank Mee said after the decision was made late Friday. “It was a fantastic group.”

  • Some bunnies loved at Midway: Animal cruelty case at a standstill

    The slaying of a Midway High School classroom rabbit hasn’t deterred students.

    Since the animal’s violent demise was reported Thursday, students had brought in three replacement bunnies to Whitney Moore’s agriculture classroom by week’s end.

    Students busied themselves by playing and petting the replacement rabbits — a gray bunny, and two white ones with black-tipped ears.

    Moore said the class rabbit that was killed had belonged to a student with special needs.

  • Leffew new Rockwood city attorney

    Greg Leffew has been Rockwood city judge for several years, but now he’s taking on a different role.

    Rockwood City Council last week unanimously approved him as city attorney, filling the void left by the death of Elmer Rich late last month.

    “I’ve known Mr. Leffew ever since he started his business as an attorney,” council member Mike Freeman said. “I think he’ll do a great job as city attorney.”

  • Students pay tribute to Holocaust victims

    Holocaust Remembrance Day is Thursday, April 19, and Nancy Miller’s fifth-grade after-school class at Ridge View Elementary is doing something to remember the 6 million people murdered during Nazi Germany’s systematic persecution of Jewish people and others across Europe.

    Miller asked Rockwood City Council to approve a proclamation last week declaring April 15-22 as Days of Remembrance. They will have a ceremony at Rockwood’s Homecoming Park on Rockwood Street at 6 p.m. Thursday to remember the victims and liberators.

  • Kingston abandons in-lieu-of-tax notion

    After placing a request for in-lieu-of-tax payments from the county on its agenda at an April work session, Kingston City Council members let the motion die on the vine when it came time a for a vote on the issue April 10.

    Council members decided on April 3 to place a letter on the April 10 full council agenda seeking in-lieu-of-tax payments for county facilities on city commercial property.

    Such payments involve voluntary fees paid from one governmental entity to another to make up for lost tax revenue.