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'The Waster' Sending Scary Letters to Dozens of Churches

Police are investigating though no crime has been committed

(Newser) - As many as six dozen churches in two states are on high alert after receiving eerie letters signed by "the Waster." Over the last two weeks, churches of varying denominations in McMinn and Monroe counties in Tennessee, and Murray County in Georgia, have received a photocopied letter criticizing... More »

Toddler Survives Up to a Week Alone After Grandma Dies

'She’s coming back to her natural self. She’s smiling and laughing'

(Newser) - A 15-month-old girl in Tennessee is on the mend after surviving up to a week trapped in her crib with no food or water, People reports. Brier Ineichen was staying with her grandmother Annette while her mother, Tracy, was in jail. But when Annette didn't show up for visitation... More »

Man Adopts Shelter Dog, Is Killed by It Within Hours

Rottweiler mauls Tennessee man just 5 days after coming off the streets

(Newser) - A Tennessee man whose ex-wife says "related to dogs better than to people" was killed by a stray dog he adopted, the same day he took it home from an animal shelter, the Jackson Sun reports. Anthony Riggs, 57, left the Madison County Rabies Control facility on Thursday with... More »

Fugitive Rapist Dead in Police Shootout

Floyd Ray Cook initially shot an officer, fired at another: police

(Newser) - A fugitive accused of shooting a Tennessee police officer and firing at a Kentucky trooper was killed in a shootout with authorities early Friday, ending a nearly weeklong manhunt. Floyd Ray Cook, 62, was pronounced dead at the scene near Burkesville, Ky., after being confronted by state troopers and a... More »

1 Killed, 3 Hurt in Tennessee State U Shooting

Dispute began over a dice game, police say

(Newser) - One man was killed and three women were wounded in an on-campus shooting stemming from a fight over a dice game on the campus of Tennessee State University in Nashville, police said Friday. The 19-year-old who died in the Thursday night shooting wasn't enrolled at the school, police spokesman... More »

Off-Duty Firefighter Runs Into Burning Home to Save Dog

Dramatic rescue was captured on video

(Newser) - Firefighters don't come any more dedicated than Tim Tawater, who was off duty and driving to his daughter's birthday party on Saturday when he spotted clouds of smoke and followed them to a burning home. He was the first firefighter on the scene in the Nashville suburb of... More »

Tennessee Missionary Murdered in Haiti

Unknown gunmen shot Roberta Edwards, kidnapped 4-year-old child with her

(Newser) - A Tennessee missionary known as "Mom" in the children's home she ran in Haiti was gunned down behind the wheel of her car Saturday night, and a child around the age of 4 with her was kidnapped, Haiti's National Police tell NBC News . Per witness and official... More »

Gunman Fires on School Bus Stop Packed With Kids

No one was injured; at least one suspect in custody

(Newser) - Gunfire rang out at a Tennessee bus stop where South Chattanooga schoolkids were waiting Tuesday. The terrifying scene unfolded as a vehicle approached the bus stop around 8:20am, police tell the Chattanooga Times Free Press . Some children were apparently alerted to the danger seconds before five to 20 shots... More »

Paramedic Bride Helps Out at Accident Scene, Pic Goes Viral

Woman rushed from her wedding when she heard dad, grandparents were in crash

(Newser) - A post-wedding car crash, a concerned bride, and her photographer mom all came together in Tennessee to create a picture you won't see in too many wedding albums: a woman in her wedding dress helping out at the scene of an accident. The now-viral photo—posted on the Montgomery... More »

Boy Who Killed Girl Over Puppies Used Gun in Closet

The 12-gauge shotgun, unlocked in closet, belonged to his dad

(Newser) - An 11-year-old boy accused of fatally shooting his 8-year-old neighbor when she refused to show him her puppies got the 12-gauge shotgun used in the shooting from an unlocked closet in his mobile home in White Pine, Tenn., police say. Jefferson County Sheriff Bud McCoig tells the Washington Post the... More »

Boy, 11, Allegedly Killed 8-Year-Old Girl Over Puppy

Shooting occurs about 40 miles east of Knoxville

(Newser) - An 11-year-old boy has been charged with murder after he killed his 8-year-old neighbor, police said, and witnesses say it was because the girl wouldn't let him see her puppy. Deputies were called to the neighborhood in White Pine, about 40 miles east of Knoxville, on Saturday night. The... More »

Tenn. Official: God, Don't Smite Us for Gay Marriage

Blount County commissioner writes resolution begging His mercy

(Newser) - With same-sex marriage now the law of the land, the commissioner of Blount County, Tenn., is proposing a resolution asking that the Supreme Being "pass us by in His coming wrath and not destroy our county as he did Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighboring cities." Karen Miller'... More »

Uncle Killed Over Kidnapped Fighting Rooster

Police found the rooster tied to a chair in a mobile home

(Newser) - It has all the trappings of a Tennessee noir: an uncle allegedly dead by his nephew's hand, a gunfight, a mobile home, and a kidnapped fighting rooster tied to a chair. The Knoxville News Sentinel reports police were called to the scene of a deadly shooting early yesterday shortly... More »

Mom: Son's Assigned Book on Cells Is 'Porn'

Jackie Sims wants to ban best-selling biography about Henrietta Lacks

(Newser) - Pornographic material surely doesn't belong on a high school reading list, but what about a best-selling biography about a woman who changed the course of medical history? If you ask Tennessee mom Jackie Sims, the two are one and the same. Sims is appealing to Knox County Schools to... More »

Lack of a Comma Has Big Legal Implications in Tenn.

Official uses grammar to make investigative records harder to get

(Newser) - How important are commas? Well, the lack of one is stopping Tennessee city councils from requesting investigative records from the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Tennessean reports. In July, the TBI looked into the fatal shooting of a 19-year-old black man by a white officer in Memphis. In the wake... More »

Judge Won't Divorce Couple Because of Gay Marriage

He says since Supreme Court redefined marriage it now has to define divorce

(Newser) - Two Tennessee residents are being forced to stay married by a judge with an apparent bone to pick over the US Supreme Court's decision on same-sex marriage, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reports. The couple filed for divorce in 2014, and last week Judge Jeffrey Atherton refused to grant... More »

Tenn. Judge: There's Nothing Wrong With Lethal Injection

Says inmates didn't prove one-drug method led to painful, lingering death

(Newser) - A Tennessee judge yesterday upheld the state's lethal injection process for executing inmates. Davidson County Chancery Judge Claudia Bonnyman said from the bench that the plaintiffs, 33 death row inmates, didn't prove that the one-drug method led to a painful and lingering death. She also said the plaintiffs... More »

Armed Citizens Turn Up to Guard Recruiting Centers

After Chattanooga shootings, residents say they want to 'serve and protect'

(Newser) - Wisconsin and six other states moved to arm National Guard members on duty after last week's Chattanooga shootings; now armed citizens are heading out to add an extra layer of protection. Reports of these self-appointed sentinels—some of them from private militia—have filtered in from Ohio, Wisconsin, Georgia,... More »

7 States to Change Rules After Chattanooga

Wisconsin the latest state to say it will arm on-duty National Guard members

(Newser) - Wisconsin is joining six other states in arming on-duty National Guard members after last week's deadly Chattanooga shootings . "Allowing our National Guard members to carry weapons while on duty gives them the tools they need to serve and protect our citizens as well as themselves," Republican Gov.... More »

Anti-DUI Campaign About 'Marginally' Hot Girls Flops

It was a swing and a miss for Tennessee

(Newser) - How would you react if you spotted a coaster at a bar bearing these words: "Buy a drink for a marginally good-looking girl only to find out she's chatty, clingy, and your boss's daughter." If your response is "man, I shouldn't drink and drive"... More »

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