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News
Grand Jury hands down indictments

COCKE COUNTY—Members of the Cocke County Grand Jury reported a number of criminal charges at the end of June.

Arraignments for those accused by the Grand Jury will be held before Cocke County Circuit Court and Honorable Judge Carter Moore.

Here is a listing of those indicted by the grand jury. Court records to not identify persons by age, address or occupation and there may be other people with the same or similar names.

Clinton Lee Baker, Jr., charged with one county of Vandalism over $2,500 and one count of Theft over $2,500.

Joseph James Barrett, charged with one count of Possession of Schedule I with intent to sell, one count of Sale of Schedule II, one count of Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, one count Driving on a Suspended License and Violation of Financial Responsibility Law.

Jeremy Blagg, charged with one count Simple Possession, one count of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, one county Criminal Impersonation and one count of Possession of a Weapon with Altered Serial Number.

Billy Wayne Frazier, charged with one count of Kidnapping, Evading Arrest, Reckless Endangerment, Possession of Schedule I, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Driving on a Revoked License, Failure to Maintain Lane, Possession of Cocaine and Simple Possession of Marijuana.

Matthew McKenzie Hart, charged with one county Driving Under the Influence, one count Driving on Revoked License, one county Reckless Driving and one count of Speeding.

Charles Timothy Hayes, one count of Violation of Sex Offender Registry.

Branden Lee James, charged with one count Driving on Suspended/Canceled/Revoked License, one count Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, one count Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Sell, one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Deliver.

Anthony Neil McKinney, charged with one count Theft Under $1,000, one count Evading Arrest by Motor Vehicle, Resisting Arrest, Reckless Driving, Kidnapping and Leaving the Scene of an Accident.

Rosemary Gail Shelton, charged with one count DUI, one count Financial Responsibility and one count Failure to Exercise Due Care.

Franklin Ezra Shropshire, charged with one count of Theft over $2,500, Vandalism over $1,000, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Violation of Financial Responsibility Law, Driving on Suspended/Revoked/ Canceled License and one count Driving an Unregistered Vehicle.

Lisa Lynn Shults, charged with Aggravated Burglary, one count of Theft Under $1,000 and one count of Vandalism Under $1,000.

Sarah Bell Smith, charged with one count of Abuse of a Vulnerable Adult, one count Abuse of an Elderly Adult and one count of Domestic Assault.

Diamon Kane Williford, charged with one count Aggravated Burglary, one count Vandalism, one count Aggravated Criminal Trespass and one count Domestic Assault.

Rita Faye York, charged with Theft over $2,500.

Amy Nicole Allison, charged with one count of Aggravated Burglary and one count of Theft over $1,000.

James Ray Ball, charged with two counts of Aggravated Assault and one count of Resisting Arrest.

James Ray Ball, charged with one count Failure to Yield to Emergency Vehicle, one county Leaving the Scene of a Accident, one count Reckless Driving, one count Failure to Exercise Due Care, one count Evading Arrest by Motor Vehicle, three counts of Vandalism over $1,000, one count Reckless Endangerment and one count of Driving on a Suspended/Canceled/Revoked License.

Patricia Michelle Ball, one count of Theft Under $1,000 and one count of Criminal Simulation.

Logan Black, charged with two counts of Burglary of a Motor Vehicle and one count of Theft Over $1,000.

Vickie Ann Boehning, charged with one count Possession of Heroin with Intent to Sell, one count of Possession of Heroin with Intent to Deliver and individual counts of Possession of Schedule V with Intent to Sell and Deliver.

Darrel Cate, charged with one count of Burglary, one count of Theft Under $1,000 and one count Criminal Trespass.

Edward Henry Feldner, charged with one count Aggravated Burglary and one count Theft Under $1,000.

Danny Ray Hall, charged with one count Aggravated Assault, one count Aggravated Burglary and one count Vandalism Under $1,000.

Branden Lee James, charged with one count Theft Under $1,000.

Jordon Lee Large, charged with one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Sell, one count of Methamphetamine with Intent to Sell, one count Theft Over $1,000, one count of Evading Arrest by Motor Vehicle, one count Driving while in Possession of Methamphetamine, one count of Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, one county Simple Possession of Marijuana, one count of Reckless Driving, one count Violation of Registration Law, one count of Light Law Violation and one count of Evading Arrest.

Jordon Lee Large, charged with Simple Possession of Methamphetamine and one count of Criminal Impersonation.

Derrick Lynn Price, charged with one count Tampering with or Fabricating Evidence and one count Sexual Exploitation of a Minor.

Tommy Lee Rice, charged with one count of Interference with an Emergency Communication, one count Domestic Assault and one count of Vandalism Under $1,000.

Tony Thompson, charged with one count of Criminal Trespassing, one count of Burglary, one count Theft Under $1,000 and one count Evading Arrest.

Dusten Toby, charged with one count Driving on Suspended/Canceled/Revoked License, one count Violation of Financial Responsibility, one count Leaving the Scene of an Accident, one count of Duty to Render Aid and Give Information and one count of Immediate Notice of Accident.

Justin Michael Webb, charged with one count Theft Under $1,000, one count Criminal Trespassing and one count Burglary.


News
Five more contestants enter Fairest of the Fair competition

COCKE COUNTY—Five more young ladies have entered the Fairest of the Fair pageant that will be held Saturday, July 17 at 8 p.m.

Adison Russell, Kourtney Clevenger, Caroline Brawley, Emma Mullen and Carly Wines have joined Caitlyn Strange, each looking to take home the crown.

Each contestant will be vying for the title as well as a $1,000 scholarship sponsored by Newport Federal Bank.

Adison Russell is the daughter of April Jenkins. She is 18-years-old and currently a freshman at Walters State Community College. Jenkins is pursuing a degree in occupational therapy.

Kourtney Clevenger is the daughter of Mark and Stephanie Clevenger. She is 16-years-old and will be a senior at Cocke County High School. After high school she plans to pursue a degree in the medical field.

Caroline Graham Brawley is the daughter of Bolling and Nancy Brawley. She is 19-years-old and is a sophomore at Furman University. Brawley plans to pursue the Rhodes Scholarship program or attend lawschool.

Emma Mullen is the daughter of Bert and Janie Mullen. She is currently a sophomore at Walters State Community College. Mullen plans to pursue a degree in graphic design.

Carly Wines is the daughter of Jenny and Charlie Wines. She is a freshman at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Wines plans to pursue a civil engineering degree with an environmental emphasis.

The Fairest of the Fair pageant will be the first of many to occur throughout fair week. The Junior Princess, Senior Princess and Junior Miss pageants will be held Tuesday, July 20 starting at 7 p.m.

Pageants will conclude with the Little Princess and Prince competition, Tiny Princess and Prince Pageant, Teeny Princess and Prince Pageant, and Baby Princess and Prince Pageant on Thursday, July 22.

Those pageants will begin at 7 p.m.

The fair is set to kick off in earnest on Tuesday, July 20 starting with a 9 a.m. opening ceremony. For more scheduling information, check out the Newport Plain Talk’s website at www.newportplaintalk.com.


News
Cocke County man indicted on First Degree Murder charge

COCKE COUNTY—A Cocke County man has been indicted on charges of First Degree Murder and Aggravated Assault.

Charles Lucas Jenkins faces the charges in the alleged murder of James Spence.

The incident that led to Spence’s death occurred in late November 2020.

Documents show that a Cocke County Grand Jury found that Jenkins “did unlawfully, intentionally and with premeditation” kill Spence, and found that he “unlawfully, feloniously and knowingly caused serious bodily injury” resulting in Spence’s death.

The Cocke County Sheriff’s Office received a call from a “friend” of Spence who stated that Jenkins had allegedly struck Spence over the head with a steel pry bar during a physical altercation on November 23, 2020.

The two had reportedly been in a prior dispute, which led Spence to obtain an order of protection against Jenkins.

Spence was taken to Newport Medical Center for treatment, but was later flown to UT Medical Center.

The CCSO reported that Spence died from his injuries on December 3, 2021.


Covid19
Small uptick in COVID cases as vaccine rates climb

COCKE COUNTY—After multiple weeks with under five active COVID cases, Cocke County is now reporting 13 cases as of July 12. Four new cases were reported for the day, bringing the county’s total to 4,558.

One new fatality was reported, bringing the total to 101 COVID-related deaths in the county.

There have been 124 hospitalizations reported.

The county’s vaccination rates are still slowly climbing, with 360 more doses of the vaccine administered over the last week. Those doses bring the county total to 27,288 doses administered, and push the county population above the 40% mark as far as residents with at least one dose.

Nearly 36.9% of the county is fully vaccinated.

The following is a list of surrounding counties showing their total COVID-19 count compared to active cases, as well as their population percentage that has received at least one dose versus percent fully vaccinated:

Sevier: 13,667/68 (38.63%/34.75%)

Hamblen: 8,711/28 (32.46%/29.75%)

Greene: 8,059/16 (37.20%/33.37%)

Jefferson: 6,354/24 (41.27%/37.61%)

The CDC reported 69 new cases for the state of Tennessee on July 12. A total of 2,370 new cases have been reported in the last seven days across the state.

Five fatalities have been reported over the last week, which pushes the toll to about 12,600.

The state reports just fewer than 5.4 million doses of the vaccine have been administered across the state as of June 12.

About 42.5% of the state’s population has received at least one dose and 38% are fully vaccinated.

Across the nation, the CDC reported 4,035 new COVID cases on June 12. The national total has climbed to nearly 33.7 million cases since the outbreak of the virus.

About 55.5% of the nation has now received at least a single dose of the COVID vaccine, and 48% are fully vaccinated.


News
WSCC to offer Kids College at Newport Center

NEWPORT—Walters State’s Newport Center will offer the college’s popular Kids College at the Newport Center. Classes will be held from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. July 19-21.

These classes are designed for rising fifth through eighth graders. For information, contact Dr. Nicole Cardwell-Hampton at Nicole.Cardwell-Hampton@ws.edu or 423-585-6756.

Kids College will be held from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. for fifth-eighth graders. The cost is $90 and includes three classes.

• 3-D, Nature, Cartoon and Animation will give students the chance to express themselves with new art techniques. Young artists will learn how shading and shadows expand an artist’s capability. Students will try their hand at drawing animals and people. Students will also learn how to do cartoon, animation, stop animation and fantasy drawing.

•Spy Kids teaches the fundamentals of crime scene investigation/criminal justice including the role of the detective, forensic scientist and lawyer. Students examine clues, build a case and bring it to a mock trial.

•Web Design/Google Apps will show students the basics of web design and HTML and CSS. Students will also learn how to navigate practical google apps using blocks-based coding programs. Copyright laws will be covered in an age-appropriate manner.

Participants will discuss what should and should not be shared and overall web safety.

Parents can complete the registration package online at https://www.campusce.net/walters/course/course.aspx?catId=11.


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