Local News

  • Meeting canceled for lack of interest?

    Roane County Commission Chairman Ron Berry planned to ask questions about the proposed 2017-18 budget during a work session last Thursday.

    He didn’t get the chance because the work session didn’t take place.

    “I guess I misunderstood,” Berry said.

  • Roane eligible for storm aid

    From staff reports

    President Donald J. Trump has approved major disaster declaration for Roane and 11 other Tennessee counties as a result of damage that occurred during the storms late last month.

    The storms caused more than $1 million in damage to Roane County, including heavy damage to power lines.

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced that federal disaster assistance has been made available to state and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations.

  • ‘I’d been there long enough’

    Something was markedly different about last week’s meeting of the Roane County grand jury. For the first time in decades, Charles Snow was not the foreman.

    “I’d been there long enough,” Snow said.

    According to the District Attorney General’s Office, Snow’s tenure as grand jury foreman started in 1987. It lasted until February, when he decided to step down after that month’s grand jury session.

  • Rockwood man hits trouble on water

    The rain-swollen Emory River was a dangerous place to be over the weekend.

    A Rockwood man reportedly was transported to Roane Medical Center Sunday while swimming near Oakdale in Morgan County.

    Carl D. Ooten, 53, was swimming with several others at the Big Burton Hole, around 5 p.m. when the incident occurred.

    Witnesses said he “had jumped in, came up to take a breath, went back under, and they could see him swimming,” according to the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office report.

  • Woman accused of attempted murder

    Regina Denise Walker, a 55-year-old Rockwood woman, is charged with attempted second-degree murder in Roane County Criminal Court.

    She’s accused of striking a Kingston woman, Liliane Martorelli, with a Toyota 4Runner on June 24, 2015.

    “Witnesses saw her hit Liliane, back up and try to hit her again,” Kingston Police Department Detective Keith Kile said.

  • Rogers charged in fatal crash

    A 30-year-old woman is facing charges in connection with a fatal car crash that happened last fall.

    Crystal D. Rogers is charged with vehicular homicide involving intoxication, vehicular assault, two counts of reckless endangerment with a weapon, driving under the influence and child abuse.

    She was indicted by the Roane County grand jury on June 19.

    The crash occurred South of the River on Dry Fork Valley Road on Oct. 9 around 3:30 p.m. The Tennessee Highway Patrol investigated the crash.

  • Cawood back as RHS principal

    Shannon Cawood has returned to his position as principal of Rockwood High School.

    “Mr. Cawood is principal and we’re looking forward to a great school year,” Roane County Director of Schools Leah Rice Watkins said.

    Cawood was suspended from the principal position following his Feb. 11 arrest for domestic assault. The charge was later dismissed.

    The alleged victim was Cawood’s wife, Midway Middle School Principal Amy Cawood. She wrote a letter to the court that said she did not wish to pursue the case against him.


    Developers are planning to restart a subdivision project in Roane County that was once the subject of controversy.

    David Beverly, the project engineer for The Cove at Blackberry Ridge, appeared before the Roane County Planning Commission on June 21.

    “We’re here tonight trying to reactivate the subdivision,” Beverly said. “It’s been on standstill here for several years. We’re here tonight with a preliminary plat request.”

    The Cove at Blackberry Ridge is located off Huffine Road near the Loudon County line.

  • Bennett named assistant recreation director

    A Professional Golfers’ Association instructor is coming home to share his expertise with the Emory Golf Course where he played as a youth.

    “Jacob Bennett has accepted the position in our parks and recreation department to assist Allen and act as the manager of the golf course,” said city manager Kevin Helms on Thursday.

    Bennett comes with quite some credentials, Helms said. That includes being a certified instructor through the Professional Golfers’ Association.

  • School leadership gets a makeover

    Midway Elementary School and Kingston Elementary School will have new principals next school year.

    Tim Thompson is leaving the principal position at Midway to take over at Kingston.

    “We're very excited about that transition,” Director of Schools Leah Rice Watkins said.

    Thompson took over as principal at Midway Elementary in 2012. He replaces Shelia Sitzlar as principal at Kingston.