Local News


    Harriman resident Loretta Culbert and members of her family attended a ceremonial mortgage burning at the Roane County Habitat for Humanity headquarters in Kingston on Thursday.

    “Loretta has paid off her mortgage after 20 years,” Habitat Executive Director Charlotte Bowers said.

    “We’re just really proud of her because that’s a momentous occasion, to finish the program in full and anybody who owns a home knows how important that is to finally get that mortgage paid off.”


    Matthew Dotson will have to seek judicial relief from a Tennessee appellate court because he didn’t get any from Circuit Court Judge Mike Pemberton.

    Dotson, serving life without parole for starving his son to death, appeared with his attorney, Phil Lomonaco, in a Morgan County courtroom on Wednesday.

    Lomonaco put forth four reasons why Dotson deserved a new trial.

    Pemberton denied all of them.

    “The proof is not just sufficient,” Assistant District Attorney General Bob Edwards said. “It’s overwhelming.”

  • Alleged rape in the jail

    A woman is alleging she was sexually assaulted by other inmates while at the Roane County Jail earlier this month.

    The Roane County Sheriff’s Office is looking into the allegations.

    “It’s still in the investigative stage,” Chief Deputy Tim Phillips said. “We’re just trying to put all the pieces together.”

    The woman was transferred from the Roane County Jail to the Cumberland County Jail, where she reportedly told Cumberland County jail staff she was assaulted during her incarceration in Roane County.

  • Kingston tosses tax increase

    The Kingston City Council on Tuesday unanimously passed on second and final reading a fiscal year 2019-2020 budget that will not require a tax increase.

    Water and sewer rates will also not require an increase under the budget approved this week.

    Balancing the budget was made possible by the unexpected notification that the city would be the recipient of more than $80,000 in sales tax revenue.

    Vice Mayor Tara Stockton said she was glad the council was presented with the opportunity to pass a budget with no tax increase.

  • County Commission honors Polk Cooley

    Late Rockwood attorney Polk Cooley loved to keep up with what his government was doing.

    Earlier this week his government honored him for his distinguished law career and the pride he showed in his community.

    “He’s truly a Rockwoodian,” Roane County Commissioner Ron Berry said. “He’s truly a Roane Countian.”

    The Commission met in regular session on Monday, Aug. 12, and passed a resolution honoring Cooley’s legacy.

  • Kids are ‘for the birds’

    A Good Samaritan reportedly came to the aid of a woman who was being assaulted in Rockwood.

    The incident happened on Wednesday, Aug. 7.

    According to the report, Rockwood Police Sgt. Jared Hall responded to the Subway restaurant on North Gateway Avenue to investigate a domestic situation.

    “I went to the Subway and spoke to Sara Beth Thomas, who told me her boyfriend, Carl Holm came to her work at Subway and started a physical fight with her,” the report said.

  • Roane Commission does not need a redo on budget vote

    It doesn’t look like the Roane County Commission will have a do-over on its 2019-20 budget vote despite some questions about how it was approved during a special-called meeting last month.

    “I didn’t have any concerns with it,” County Executive Ron Woody said after Monday’s regular Commission meeting.

    “Legitimate questions and I thought they were answered.”

    Initially, the budget failed as amended 9-6 during the special-called meeting on July 29.

  • Manis pleads in assault of an officer case

    The man accused of shooting at Harriman police in 2016 entered a guilty plea in Roane County Criminal Court last week.

    Nathan Manis, 31, was facing two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of felony reckless endangerment.

    He reached a plea deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to one count of aggravated assault and one count of felony reckless endangerment. The remaining two charges were dismissed.