Local News Articles

Elderly Man Dies In All Terrain Vehicle Accident On His Farm

July 26, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

An elderly DeKalb County man died in an all terrain vehicle accident on his farm in the Alexandria-Temperance Hall area Tuesday.

The body of 79 year old Billy Joe Corley of Lower Helton Road, Alexandria was discovered early Wednesday morning.

Detective Charles Griffith of the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department says Corley left his house on a three wheeler to check on a cow Tuesday afternoon and when he didn't return family members became concerned and began looking for him.

Authorities were later notified and Griffith says people on foot, on four wheelers, in four wheel drive trucks, and by other means took part in the search including family, friends, neighbors, members of the DeKalb County Rescue Squad, Sheriff's Department, volunteer firefighters, and others. An aerial spotlight search by helicopter was also planned but was canceled because of dense fog. The search continued through the night and into the pre-dawn hours of Wednesday morning.

According to Griffith, the search was scheduled to resume after sunrise Wednesday, but word came around 5:50 a.m. that members of the family had found the body.

Detective Griffith says it appears Corley lost control of his three wheeler while trying to negotiate a turn on a steep hillside and overturned. His body was found near the three wheeler. Griffith says the accident occurred on Corley's farm approximately a half mile from his home but the three wheeler and body were difficult to find because of the rolling landscape and tall brush and weeds in that area.

DeKalb Jobless Rate Jumps To 6.3% In June

July 28, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The DeKalb County unemployment rate jumped from 5.4% in May to 6.3% in June.

The local labor force for June was 9,590. A total of 8,980 were employed and 610 were unemployed.

County non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for June 2006, released today, show that all 95 counties increased. The increase in Tennessee's county rates is largely due to the seasonal closing of schools, increasing the amount of unemployed students and workers into the labor market. Tennessee's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for June, which was released last week, was 5.6 percent, 0.2 percentage point higher than the May rate of 5.4 percent.

Williamson County registered the state's lowest county unemployment rate at 3.6 percent, up from 3.1 in May. Knox and Blount counties were the second lowest with 4.5 percent, up from the May rate of 3.8 percent. Lawrence County had the highest county rate at 12.5 percent, up from the May rate of 11.5.

Knox County had the state's lowest major metropolitan rate for the month of June at 4.5 percent, up from the May rate of 3.8 percent. Davidson County was the next lowest with 4.9 percent, up from 4.2 percent in May. The Hamilton County rate increased to 5.4 percent from 4.4 percent in May. Shelby was 6.9 percent in June, up from 5.6 percent in May.

Smithville Police Destroy Old Evidence No Longer Needed

August 2, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The Smithville Police Department destroyed approximately 171 items of old evidence on Tuesday.

The evidence ranged from drugs including marijuana , pills , cocaine , and methamphetamine to knifes, brass knuckles, swords, moonshine , and other items.

The evidence destroyed were all used in cases that have been disposed of in court and are no longer needed by the police for prosecution.

Chief Gus Clemente and Det. Sergeant Chris Russell said that destroying these items helps take some of the drugs and weapons off the streets and makes sure the items do not get back into the wrong hands.

Toddler Show Winners Awarded At DeKalb County Fair

July 29, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

Winners of the annual Toddler Show were awarded Friday evening at the DeKalb County Fair.

The winners are as follows:

Girls (13 to 18 months)
First Place- Harlee Rae Stanley, daughter of Chris and Dana Stanley
Second Place- Carlee Elizabeth West, daughter of Megan West.

Boys (13 to 18 months)
First Place- Adan Roel Haynes, son of Carelis Haynes and Roel Ramirez
Second Place- Devon J. Maxwell, son of David and Christy Maxwell

Girls (19 to 24 months)
First Place- Jana Faith Tripp, daughter of Jonathon and Beth Tripp
Second Place- Jacklyn Rose Kleparek, daughter of LaTonya and Dylan Kleparek

Boys (19 to 24 months)
First Place- Ethan Winchester, son of Renee Winchester.
Second place- None

Girls (25 to 30 months)
First Place- Ali Bain, daughter of Jimmy and Tonya Bain
Second Place- Addison Jean Puckett, daughter of Jimmy and Anita Puckett.

Boys (25 to 30 months)
First Place- Hagen Wayne Waggoner, son of Phillip and Natasha Waggoner.
Second Place- Kasen Johnson, son of Jason and Crystal Johnson

Girls (31 to 36 months)
First Place- Jaycee Rochelle Johnson, daughter of Jonathon Johnson and Shelley and Tim Hearn..
Second Place- Madison Rae Rackley, daughter of Gordon and Jessica Rackley

Boys (31 to 36 months)
First Place- Hayden Rigsby, son of David and Tyroma Rigsby
Second Place- Matthew Tyler Buchanan, son of Matthew and Kristen Buchanan

Girls (37 to 47 months)
First Place- Taylor Gibbs, daughter of Teesha Gibbs
Second Place- Kiley Faith Staley, daughter of Tim and Debbie Staley

Boys (37 to 47 months)
First Place- Levi Katon Driver, son of Brad and Kelly Driver
Second Place- Josef Micah Osment, son of Billy and Angela Osment.

Twins (13 to 47 months)
First Place- Lydia and Jathan Willoughby, children of Jonathon and Rena Willoughby
Second Place- None

Meanwhile, Kevin Roberts was the $1,000 cash winner Friday night.

A total of $3,000 will be given away to one winner Saturday night at 9:00 p.m. You must be present to win. Your admission ticket is your ticket for the drawing.

A Total of 2,079 Vote During Early Voting Period

July 29, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

A total of 2,079 people cast ballots during the early voting period of July 14th - 29th at the courthouse.

The DeKalb County Election Commission reports the following daily voting breakdown: Friday, July 14th -139, Saturday, July 15th -148, Monday, July 17th-84, Tuesday, July 18th- 131, Wednesday, July 19th- 145, Thursday, July 20th- 240, Friday, July 21st- 132, Saturday, July 22nd- 114, Monday, July 24th- 120, Tuesday, July 25th- 111, Wednesday, July 26th -120, Thursday, July 27th- 224, Friday, July 28th- 147, and Saturday, July 29th- 224. These numbers also include the mail ballots received.

The DeKalb County Election Commission reminds you that Thursday, August 3rd is election day.

Polling places at all sixteen precincts across the county will be open Thursday from 8:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m.

WJLE will have exclusive LIVE election return coverage starting Thursday night at 7:00 p.m. at the courthouse. WJLE will also have regular updates throughout the night on www.wjle.com.

Woodbury Man Injured In Motorcycle Accident

July 30, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

A 41 year old Woodbury man was injured in a motorcycle accident Sunday morning on Highway 146 near the Cannon County line in DeKalb County.

Trooper Brian Raymond of the Tennessee Highway Patrol says Gerald F. Suess of Valley Drive, Woodbury was riding a 2006 Honda Shadow north on the Short Mountain Highway when he went off the road, through a ditch, and struck a culvert. Suess, who was wearing a helmet, was thrown from the motorcycle.

He was taken by DeKalb EMS to DeKalb Community Hospital where he was treated and released.

Applicants Sought For Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program

July 31, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

Low-income households may be eligible to receive between $300 and $500 toward their electric, wood, coal, natural gas, LP gas or kerosene costs from the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program.

UCHRA Executive Director, Phyllis R. Bennett, says the Upper Cumberland Human Resource Agency administers the program for a fourteen county area in the Upper Cumberland. Applications will be available and clients in DeKalb and Warren counties may apply August 7th through August 18th.

Applicants for LIHEAP assistance must be at or below 125% of the poverty level and must provide proof of all household income. Even individuals receiving benefit checks such as VA, SSI or Social Security will need to submit verification of their award amounts. Applicants must also submit a copy of a utility bill and or propane gas, wood, coal, or kerosene purchases.

Sponsored by the Tennessee Department of Human Services, LIHEAP provides assistance regardless of age, race, creed, national origin, handicap, or sex. Minorities are encouraged to apply.

Individuals interested in applying for LIHEAP may pick up an application at their local UCHRA office or at their local senior citizens center from August 7th through August 18th between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Appointments may be scheduled with agency personnel for individuals requiring assistance. Energy assistance awards are based on a priority point system and are not first come, first serve.

Tennessee To Launch First Annual Sales Tax Holiday August 4-6 On Back To School Clothing And Supplies

December 31, 1969
by: 
Dwayne Page

Tennessee?s first annual sales tax holiday is this weekend and Governor Phil Bredesen is reminding Tennesseans about this long weekend of savings for families doing back-to-school shopping for supplies and clothing. The state?s first annual sales tax holiday starts at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, August 4 and ends at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, August 6.

All the details about the state?s new sales tax holiday are available at a dedicated Web site, www.tntaxholiday.com.

During this designated three-day weekend, consumers may purchase selected clothing, school supplies and computers without paying Tennessee?s state and local sales tax on the items. This holiday also includes purchases of qualified items sold via mail, telephone, e-mail, or Internet if the customer orders and pays for the item and the retailer accepts the order during the exemption period for immediate shipment, even if delivery is made after the exemption period.

?Creating this sales tax holiday was one of my goals from the beginning of my administration,? Bredesen said. ?The sales tax holiday positively impacts education, our number one priority. The Aug. 4-6 sales tax holiday will provide tax savings for Tennessee?s working families as they prepare for the school year.?

The Department of Revenue offers answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the sales tax holiday:

What is a sales tax holiday?

A sales tax holiday is designed to provide relief to taxpayers by instituting a temporary sales tax exemption on certain items for a specific period of time. Tennessee is among 13 other states and the District of Columbia that have enacted sales tax holidays.

What items qualify for the sales tax holiday?

During the holiday, the following items are exempt from sales and use tax:
Clothing with a price of $100 or less per item
School supplies with a price of $100 or less per item
Computers with a price of $1,500 or less per item

Does the $100 exemption apply to the first $100 of a school supply or an item of clothing being purchased? In other words, if the selling price of a book or a clothing item is $105, is the first $100 exempt from sales tax?

No. The exemption applies to items selling for $100 or less. If an item sells for more than $100 ($105 in this example), tax is due on the entire selling price.

Is there a limit to the number of items that may be purchased?

There is no limit to the quantity of items that may be purchased as long as the purchase price of each of those items is below the threshold provided in the law.

Is an exemption certificate required to take advantage of the sales tax holiday?

No exemption certificate is required to take advantage of the holiday.

Does computer software qualify for the holiday?

No. While computers with a price of $1,500 or less may be purchased exempt from tax during the holiday, purchases of computer software made separately from the computer are excluded from the holiday and are subject to tax.

If I place an order for a computer on Aug. 1 and pay for it with my credit card, but it is delivered during the holiday, will it be exempt?

No. Qualified items sold to purchasers by mail, telephone, e-mail, or Internet shall qualify for the sales tax exemption if the customer orders and pays for the item and the retailer accepts the order during the holiday period for immediate shipment, even if delivery is made after the exemption period. Therefore, if the computer was ordered and the credit card was charged during the holiday period, and delivery was scheduled to take place after the holiday, the sale would qualify for the exemption.

Can I buy items out of town or out of state and still qualify for the holiday?

Purchases can be made from Tennessee retailers, including retailers that sell through the Internet or catalog if those items are to be delivered into Tennessee.

Will items purchased for my business be eligible for the tax exemption during the sales tax holiday?

No. The exemption does not apply to items used in a trade or business or to items that are rented. If you make a purchase for an item that is to be used in a trade or business and the retailer does not collect sales tax from you, you are obligated to report this purchase and pay use tax on the item. You may report and pay this on your regularly filed return, or if you do not have a sales tax account, you may report and pay this on a consumer use tax return available on the department's Web site.

DeKalb County Man Charged With Growing Marijuana

July 31, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

The discovery of several marijuana plants Friday led to the arrest of a DeKalb County man.

Captain Mark Collins of the DeKalb County Sheriff's Department says 43 year old Ray Martin has been charged with cultivating and manufacturing marijuana.

Collins says on Friday afternoon he received an anonymous tip that marijuana plants were being grown in pots at 455 Parsley Road off Cookeville Highway. When he went to the scene to investigate, Captain Collins found 18 marijuana plants, 3 to 4 feet tall, in pots next to Martin's residence.

Martin was placed under arrest. His bond is $3,500 and he will be in General Sessions Court on the charges August 17th

Fire Damages Home On Possum Hollow Road

August 1, 2006
by: 
Dwayne Page

A fire Friday afternoon around 4:30 p.m. damaged the residence of John Barber at 125 Possum Hollow Road.

DeKalb County Fire Chief Donny Green says a neighbor reported smoke coming from the double wide mobile home.

Green says the DeKalb County Fire Department quickly responded and was able to extinguish the fire. \" Upon our arrival, we found heavy smoke coming from the eaves. We made entry and found fire coming from the living room wall behind an entertainment center. The fire was contained to the wall and a small portion of the attic just above the entertainment center. The remainder of the home received extensive smoke and heat damage. No one was at home at the time of the fire.\"

Members of the Cookeville Hwy, Short Mountain Highway, and Liberty stations of the DeKalb County Fire Department responded along with the department's tanker truck. DeKalb County
Sheriff's deputies were on hand to provide traffic control.

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