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Today's News

  • JULY 21: Houston friend said deputy made thinly veiled threat

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    Hours and hours of testimony have come from TBI forensic scientist Robert Daniel Royse since he took the witness stand in Leon Houston's double murder trial last Thursday. He offered more ballistic evidence on Monday.

    However, despite his expertise and volumes of evidence, the state's key witness still can't conclusively provide the answer to one important question. Which party fired first in a shootout that left a sheriff's deputy and his friend dead and Leon facing life in prison?

  • Webb uses passing camp to hone Tigers' skills

    By GOOSE LINDSAY

    rcsports@bellsouth.net

    After losing more than half the starters on both sides of the football, Rockwood head coach John Webb knows his team has to grow up in a hurry if they expect to leave Oneida on Friday, Aug. 22 with a season-opening victory.

  • Roane man drowns trying to save kids

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    rccindysimpson@bellsouth.net

    A Roane County man was trying to save his daughter and a friend, but instead, it was he who drowned off Cocoa Beach, Fla., Saturday.

    Mike Ward, 49, went into the water to help his daughter and a friend. Authorities have said may have gotten into a powerful current running parallel to the shore.

    “The riptide took him under — took him too long under,” said South Harriman Baptist music minister Sam Leslie.

  • Midtown Starbucks on closure list

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    rccindysimpson@bellsouth.net

    The Harriman Starbucks in Pinnacle Pointe at Hwy. 70 and Interstate 40 is on a list of stores scheduled to be closed by the corporation.

    According to a release, Starbucks plans to close about 600 underperforming company-operated stores throughout the United States this summer and into fiscal year 2009.

    The corporation reportedly has plans to open additional stores in the future.

    Harriman’s store is among the new Starbucks facilities that are on the list of closures.

  • JULY 18 UPDATE: Bullet from Leon's gun found in cruiser

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    A TBI forensics expert testified Friday morning that a bullet from a Glock allegedly fired by Leon Houston was found in the cruiser Roane County Sheriff's Deputy Bill Jones was driving the afternoon he died.

    TBI forensic scientist Robert Daniel Royse showed the jury a slide show that indicated shell casings from Leon's Glock pistol were found near a bush outside Leon's home.

    Royse also said that a fired bullet was found sitting on the passenger seat of Jones' police cruiser.

  • FRIDAY AFTERNOON UPDATE: Brown fired four shots before his death

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    Former law enforcement officer Mike Brown fired four shots from a Ruger 9mm pistol before he lost his life in a shootout on May 11, 2006.

    TBI forensic scientist Robert Daniel Royse testified about Brown's weapon and the ballistic evidence associated with it Friday afternoon during Leon Houston's double-murder trial.

  • Harriman comes up short at state tourney

    By GOOSE LINDSAY

    Roane Newspapers

    Only one team will leave Lookout Mountain happy this week and unfortunately for Harriman fans, the Blue Devils won't be that team as the Harriman Major All-Stars dropped their first two games at the Dixie Youth Majors State Tournament.

    Harriman opened play Monday against defending state champion Goodlettsville and dropped a 10-0 decision. After a day off on Tuesday, the Blue Devils had their chances against Bolivar, but in the end they couldn't come up with enough hits and dropped a 9-3 decision.

    Harriman vs.

  • July 17:Forensics evidence critical to Houston case

    By DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    The forensics portion of Leon Houston's double murder trial got underway on Thursday. A high-powered assault rifle, which was allegedly used by Rocky Houston, was put on full display for the jury.

  • Leader in 'No. 2' business moving to technology park

    By CINDY SIMPSON

    rccindysimpson@bellsouth.net

    The owners of C.R. Barger and Sons playfully call themselves No. 1 in the No. 2 business.

    The growing, family-owned company has decided to move its septic tank manufacturing operation from the Clax Gap area to East Roane County.

    Barger is relocating production to the Roane Regional Business and Technology Park.

    The company’s products include septic tanks, storm shelters and grease traps.

  • JULY 16: Eyewitness status sketchy in Houston trial

    DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    DAMON LAWRENCE

    rclawrence@bellsouth.net

    ““May 11, 2006, was a nice spring day,” special prosecutor Robert “Gus” Radford told a Roane County jury Wednesday.

    But before that day was over, Bill Jones and Mike Brown would be dead ee* riddled with bullets ee* after a gunfight on a country lane.

    Radford, in his opening statements in Leon Houston's double murder trial, laid out his theory of how such a day could end so badly for the men.