The Sullivan County Commission Will Be Meeting Today At The Old Courthouse In Blountville. One Thing County Leaders Will Consider Is Contributing 75-Thousand Dollars Toward A 288-Thousand Needed For Site Acquisition For A Proposed New Pet Adoption Center In Kingsport. The New Facility In Kingsport Will Be Located On Land Along East Stone Drive. The Meeting Gets Underway At Nine O’clock.
A Tennessee Bureau Of Investigation Probe Has Lead To The Arrest Of A Greene County Man Into False Liens And Entries On State Documents Involving Several Pieces Of Property. 64 Year Old James Michael Usinger Is Named Along With Ten Other Individuals In A 320-Count Indictment Out Of Davidson County Tennessee. The Documents Were Filed With The State Against Individuals, Including Police Officers, County Mayors, Sheriff’s And Elected Officials.
Mountain Empire Oil In Johnson City Has Sold All 92 Of Its Roadrunner Stores To The Parent Company Of Fas Mart. GPM Investments LLC, Based In Richmond Virginia, Signed An Agreement This Week To Acquire Mountain Empire Oil Company Incorporated. GPM Investments Has Pledged To Embrace Roadrunner’s Company Mission And Enhance The Customer Experience At All Of Its Locations. The Deal Will Make GPM Investments The Largest Privately Owned Company In The Convenience Store Industry With Over 11-Hundred Stores In 18 States.
A Marion Virginia Man And His Former Girlfriend Are Accused Of Planning To Have Inappropriate Contact With A Ten Year Old Girl. 41 Year Old Richard Cruey And 38 Year Old Laura Cindy Thompson Are Charged With Use Of A Communications Systems To Facilitate Certain Offenses Involving Children. Cruey Is Also Charged With Conspiracy To Commit Forcible Sodomy. Their Arrests Came After A Concerned Citizen Came To A School Resource Officer About A Facebook Message On A Cell phone Regarding The Young Child. Both Cruey And Thompson Are Being Held In The Southwest Virginia Regional Jail In Abingdon Pending Arraignment In Smyth County Juvenile And Domestic Relations Court. The Two Face Additional Charges.
Two Pound Virginia Police Officers Are Feeling Blessed Today After Not Being Seriously Injured After Being Struck Over The Weekend By A Suspect Who Sped Away From A Traffic Stop. Police Chief Tony Baker Said Officers Pulled Over Dana Howard On U.S. Highway 23 Friday Night. He Tried To Give Them Fake Identification And When Asked To Get Out Of The Car, Sped Away, Running Over One Officers’ Foot And Hitting The Other Officer With The Passenger Side Of The Car. He Was Captured Later In Kentucky. Howard Faces Charged Of Assault On Law Enforcement, Attempt To Forge A Document And DUI.
An Off Duty Bristol Virginia Police Detective Is Facing DUI Charges In Bristol Tennessee. 35 Year Old Aaron Hankins Was Arrested Last Friday And Remains Suspended Without Pay. Hankins Was Reportedly Driving His Personal Vehicle At The Time Of His Arrest. Officers Responded To A Property Damage Crash On Dartmouth Drive, But When They Arrived, It Was Determined The Vehicle Had Already Left The Scene. Officer Robert Brent Followed A Fluid Trail To A City Residence Where They Found Hankins Car. Hankins Will Appear In Court On June 5th.
T Was Standing Room Only At The Bristol Virginia City Council Meeting. Folks Are Upset Over Potential Budget Cuts Made To Emergency Services As A Way To Solve A 100 Million Dollar Deficit. Even Though A Proposed Budget Won’t Be Ready Until April, Most People Showed Up Last Night As A Way To Make It Clear To Leaders, They Don’t Want Cuts Made With Safety And Emergency Workers. The Council Will Spend The Next Six Weeks Going Over Each Department’s Budget.
Even Though A Kingsport Nursing Home Is Facing Several State Violations, No Criminal Charges Will Be Filed Against It. Sullivan County District Attorney General Barry Staubus Said There’s Simply Not Enough Evidence Of Criminal Activity At Brookhaven Manor To Continue Forward. The Violations With The State Involve Sub-Standard Care, Including Physician And Nursing Services And Infection Control. The State Suspended Admissions To The Nursing Home Last Year And The Suspension Is Still In Effect. No New Patients Can Be Accepted.
Sullivan County And Hawkins County Schools Are Closed Today And Tomorrow. No, Its Not Because Of The Weather But Due To Increased Absences Over Staff And Student Illnesses. Director Of Schools Evelyn Rafalowski Said Hopefully The Extra Time Will Allow Families A Chance To Get Everyone Well, And Will Also Prevent More Kids And Staff From Getting Sick. Meanwhile, Greene County Schools Are Also Closed Today Due To Sicknesses.
Local Rescue Squads, Along With The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency Will Resume Their Search This Morning For A Man Who Has Been Missing Since Saturday On South Holston Lake. Spokesman Matt Cameron Said 41 Year Old James Matthew Ragan Setup A Campsite Near The 421 Bridge. They Think He Went To Go Fishing In A Canoe Which Was Found Flipped Over Upstream From The Bridge. TWRA Officials Have Said Its Not An Easy Search Because Its A Large Area And Very Deep Water. Sullivan County EMA Director Jim Bean Said They’re Using Underwater Remote Vehicles, Sonar Units and Underwater Cameras Instead Of Putting Divers in the Cold Water.
The Owner Of Hawkins County Memorial Gardens Has Reportedly Agreed To Enter A Plea In Connection With Charges Of Theft, Money Laundering And Forgery. According To The District Attorney General Dan Armstrong, Vicki Ringley Will Be Released From Jail On February 28th And Will Be Required To Relinquish All Of Her Rights To The Cemetery, Permanently Forfeit Her Operating License And Be Required To Pay 500 Dollars A Month In Restitution Starting In April As Part Of Her Plea Agreement. She Has A Plea Hearing Set For Friday In Hawkins County Criminal Court.
It Looks As Though The Proposed Sale Of BVU’s Optinet Division Could Be On Hold For Awhile. Cumberland Plateau Officials Claim BVU Owes It Eight Million Dollars. The Company Is Trying To Sell The Division To Sunset Digital Communications For 50 Million Dollars. CPC, Which Is A 50 Percent Partner In Its Four County Service Area, Has To Approve The Sunset Deal. CPC And Sunset Officials Met Last Week With What Was Termed A Good Encounter. CPC Is Set To Meet Again On February 23rd. There Is A March 31st Deadline For The Optinet Transaction.
A Team Of Six Tennessee Board Of Regents Officials Visited The Campus Of Northeast State Community College To Try To Get Some Answers Following A Vote Of No Confidence Against President Janice Gilliam Last Week. The Team Was Comprised Of Academic Affairs And Business And Finance Departments As Well As The Offices Of General Counsel And System-Wide Internal Audit To Evaluate Concerns Raised By The Faculty. The TBR Team Met With Gilliam, Administrative Staff, The President Of The Faculty Senate And Several Other Faculty Members During Its Visit. The Findings Of The Report Will Be Ready By March 31st.
A U.S. District Court Jury In Abingdon Virginia Has Convicted A Physician Assistant For Distributing Phentermine Tablets Using Her Drug Enforcement Administration Registration. 41 Year Old Melissa Hartwell Of Marion Was Found Guilty Of Conspiring To Distribute A Controlled Substance, Conspiracy To Allow The Use Of Her Dea Registration Number By Another Person And Distributing Phentermine. Hartwell Worked As A Physician Assistant At Mtrx, A Weight Loss Clinic In Bristol Tennessee. Hartwell Faces Up To Five Years In Prison And A Fine Of 250-Thousand Dollars. No Sentencing Date Has Been Set.
A Johnson City Man Accused Of Stabbing His Father Is Set To Be Arraigned This Afternoon In General Sessions Court. 44 Year Old John Farrington Jr. Is Charged With Domestic Aggravated Assault In The Attack On John Farrington Sr. At The Johnson Inn On West Market Street. He Was Treated At A Local Hospital For Two Stab Wounds To His Leg. Farrington Jr. Is Being Held On A 25-Thousand Dollars Bond.
A Daniel Boone High School Student Involved In A Car Crash Last Week Has Reportedly Passed Away At A Local Hospital From Injuries Sustained In The Wreck. Justine Rose Died During A Prayer Vigil Outside The School Last Night.
A Team From The Tennessee Board Of Regents Will Be Visiting The Northeast State Community College Campus Today To Probe Faulty Concerns And Allegations Made In A Recent No Confidence Vote Against President Janice Gilliam. The Meetings Will Be Closed To The Public And The Media As Well. Gilliam Has Been President Of The College Since 2009. Once The Team Has Completed Its Investigation, Then It Will Give A Report To The Full Tennessee Board Of Regents.
Bristol Virginia Leaders Are Needing To Make Cuts In Order To Reduce A 100 Million Dollar Debt. The Council Did Agree That Revenue Needs To Increase And The City Must Attract More Businesses. They Also Want City Departments To Look At Making Cuts, Including Emergency Services Such As Police And Fire Departments. The Fire Department Has Already Made Concessions By Declining To Respond To Emergency Medical Calls Unless The Life Saving Crew Needs More Help. The City Council Will Go Through Each Department’s Budget Next Tuesday.
Bristol Tennessee Leaders Have Decided To Use Eminent Domain For A Road Project Claiming Public Safety Is At Issue And The Main Reason For The Decision. But Reverend Barbara Doyle, Pastor Of Virginia Avenue United Methodist Church Doesn’t Agree. The City Will Be Be Using Land From The Church’s Parking Lot In Order To Add Sidewalks, Pedestrian Signals And Crosswalks At The Intersection Of East Cedar Street And 5th Street To King College Road. Another Man Could Lose Two Rental Homes In The Process.
A Johnson City Man Is Finding Himself On The Wrong Side Of The Law. 36 Year Old Harold Griffith Is Charged With Aggravated Assault, Simple Possession, Dui, Evading Arrest And Reckless Driving After Officers Initiated A Traffic Stop And Griffith Allegedly Drove Away, Nearly Striking An Officer. The Vehicle Was Found Abandoned And Griffith Was Located A Short Time Later. His Bond Is Set At 33-Thousand Dollars And He Will Appear In General Sessions Court This Afternoon For Arraignment.