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Today's News

  • Police say Knox man pointed a gun at his girlfriend

    Kingston police filed an attempted first-degree murder charge against a Knoxville man last week.

    According to the report on the incident, Chester Lynn McHaffie allegedly pointed a gun at his girlfriend’s face and pulled the trigger multiple times. The gun did not fire.

    Roger Murray reportedly witnessed the incident and told police McHaffie “was trying to kill” the girlfriend.

  • Radiation detected in old TVA pipes

    A report about some radioactive pipes is what prompted District Attorney General Russell Johnson’s trip to the Kingston Fossil Plant last Wednesday.

    The pipes are the property of TVA, which operates the fossil plant.  

    “This is very old piping once used to move bottom ash,” TVA spokesman Scott Brooks said. “It was demolished as part of the conversion to dry handling. It was cleaned and waiting to be scrapped. TVA processors, as part of their function, checked the pipes for radioactivity.”

  • Man gets 18 years for child rape, sex crimes

    A Kingston man is going to prison for 18 years after pleading guilty to sex crimes in Roane County Criminal Court on Friday.

    Bob Lee Babineau was charged with two counts of child rape and seven counts of aggravated sexual battery. He reached a deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to two of the aggravated sexual battery counts. The rest of the charges were dismissed.

    Assistant District Attorney General Bob Edwards said Babineau gave a confession, in which he described in graphic details his crimes.

  • Jim Smith up for Rockwood city judge post

    Rockwood Mayor Mike “Brillo” Miller will be recommending hometown attorney Jim Smith as the new city judge.

    “I think he’ll do a great job,” said Miller.

    Rockwood City Council will meet in special called session 5 p.m. Monday, Aug. 14, to consider Smith, who will replace outgoing judge Mark Foster. It’s the only item on the agenda.

    Smith, a Rockwood native, has had a downtown law office for many years.

    He was the 1966 valedictorian of Rockwood High School.

  • Put on your ‘Q’ to help homeless

    Taste the best barbecue chicken and ribs Roane County has to offer and support a good cause on Saturday, Aug. 19.

    Family Promise of Roane County is holding its second annual bluegrass and barbecue cook-off at shed 2 at Roane County Park. Tasters Alley opens from 3 to 5 p.m. giving visitors a chance to try their favorites.  Meals are $10 for adults and $5 for kids 12 and younger.

    Six judges will decide the best of the best in barbecue chicken and ribs, and customers can vote for the people’s choice for the best homemade sauce.

  • No further suspects in homicide

    By Damon Lawrence and Cindy Simpson

    Sam Northern, a man described as a prime suspect in a homicide investigation, was found dead inside his Harriman Housing Authority apartment Tuesday afternoon.

    Harriman police said Wednesday that no wrongdoing is suspected in Northern’s death.

    “There are no signs of foul play,” Chief Derek Pacifico said. “No signs of trauma or anything to indicate that this is a homicide.”

    Northern was 55 years old.

  • ARISEN from the ASHES?

    Some officials contend the work that’s been done to try to help Roane County overcome the stigma of the ash spill has been setback by recent coverage of a lawsuit filed by people who worked during the cleanup.

    “I think we were headed in the right direction as far as any type of stigma that we were dealing with,” said Wade Creswell, president/CEO of The Roane Alliance. “This has refreshed the issue in people’s minds.”

  • Kingston water interconnect pays off for hospital

    A water interconnect installed to assure Kingston’s water supply came in handy during a recent water problem at Roane Medical Center.

    An accidental breach of a water line between Harriman and Midtown a few weeks ago resulted in a loss of water to the medical center.

    “The hospital doesn’t have water storage,” said Kingston City Manager David Bolling.

    Roane Central Utility District general manager Bob Creswell said his engineers went to work right away to get the water back to the hospital in less than an hour.

  • FEMA program may help Harriman recoup storm cleanup costs

    Harriman hopes a Federal Emergency Management Agency pilot program will mean more aid to recover from the cleanup of the storms that ripped through the area in May.

    City Manager Kevin Helms recently said they had moved 419 dump truck loads of debris.

    FEMA would typically reimburse a city 75 percent of the approved cost to remove debris, including contractor costs, city equipment use, dump sites and disposal costs and overtime to personnel. The state would then contribute 12.5 percent, leaving the city with 12.5 percent of the approved cost.

  • Police hurt on the job

    Two lawmen with separate municipal police departments have been injured in recent days while working roadway incidents.

    Both men are sergeants with their respective departments.

    Oliver Springs Police Sgt. Charlie Graham was struck while working a wreck on Thursday. Three days later, Kingston Sgt. Jerry Singleton had his left knee fractured when a vehicle fled the scene.