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Today's News

  • UT hat robber strikes again

    On the five-year anniversary of his last bank robbery, Bryan Scott Samples was allegedly at it again.

    According to the FBI, Samples robbed a Y-12 Federal Credit Union in Knoxville on Jan. 23.

    On that day in 2010, he robbed an ORNL Federal Credit Union in Knoxville.

    The FBI identified Samples, 43, as a Kingston resident.

    He wore a hat with a University of Tennessee “Power T” on it in the ORNL robbery. He is also alleged to have worn a “Power T” hat in last week’s robbery of the Y-12 branch at 6640 Clinton Hwy.

  • Roane man charged with raping teens

    A man classified as a violent sex offender is accused of raping two Roane County High School students.

    The alleged crimes did not occur at the school.

    The suspect, Matthew Brandon Hall, was arrested last Friday.

    He’s charged with aggravated assault and two counts of rape.

    Roane County Sheriff’s Office Detective A.E. Wolff responded to Roane County High last week after school administrators notified authorities that two students had came forward with allegations against Hall.

  • A little sugar frosting
  • Charges lodged in starved dog’s death

    Harriman police have charged a couple with animal cruelty.

    James Allen Davis, 38, and Angela R. Stiles, 41, both of 902 Crescent St., Harriman, owned Max, a Sharpei breed that died last week due to poor health.

    Max was almost lifeless on Jan. 21, when he was taken to the Roane County Animal Shelter.

    He was euthanized Friday, Jan. 23 after being taken in by the Humane Society of the Tennessee Valley.

  • Red Cross CPR class
  • No raise for airport director

    Rockwood Municipal Airport manager Danny Collins is not getting a $4,000 annual increase proposed in a contract renewal.

    Rockwood City Council tabled the item last month, and opinions had changed little since that time, including the disapproval of Councilman Harold Holloway.

    “The last meeting I was against it. That hasn’t changed,” said Holloway.

    Holloway said he has nothing against Collins, but he said the raise would put him above that of other department heads.

  • Kingston Library prepares for a new era

    The focus of improvements at the Kingston Public Library have been on the building itself: expansion, maintenance and renovation of the building itself.

    That is expected to change soon. This week, Kingston Library Board members hope to choose a new library director who’ll focus on people and programming. A special-called meeting at the library has been set for Thursday at 5 p.m., when board members will choose from a handful of finalists.

    The board voted to let longtime library director Steve Jacks go last fall.

  • Do the crime, be ready to do the time

    Eva Hallene McNelley wasn’t a passive participant in the Roane County drug conspiracy that netted more than 200,000 oxycodone pills.

    The Rockwood woman had such a key role that the feds listed her second on the 23-person indictment that led to the pill ring’s demise.

    “She actively participated in the conspiracy on her own accord, and did so for a length of time,” Chief U.S. District Judge Thomas Varlan said at McNelley’s sentencing hearing last week at the federal courthouse in Knoxville.

  • Assessor employee terminated

    Cheryl Laxton said she knew it was only a matter of time after her husband confronted Roane County Property Assessor David Morgan.

    Laxton had been Morgan’s chief of staff until he abruptly fired her on Thursday.

    “We know why he fired me,” she said Friday. “There’s no doubt.”

    The termination came eight days after Charles Laxton went in Morgan’s office to confront him about the treatment of his wife and other female employees.

  • Rockwood teacher still in classroom after arrest

    Matthew R. Jones, a science teacher at Rockwood Middle School, is char-
    ged with felony aggravated stalking in the Middle Tennessee city of Dickson.

    Roane County Director of Schools Gary Aytes is aware of the allegations and expressed confidence that Jones will be exonerated.  

    “It happened to be filed by the husband of his ex-wife,” Aytes said.

    “Matt’s been to work for us every day,” the school director added, “so we feel pretty certain that it will be dismissed.”