Tuesday Hearing Latest Wrinkle in Vote-Buying Case Accused vote buyer Brian Hodge appeared in federal district court in a bond hearing on Tuesday, asking a judge to rule whether he can serve as a jailer at the Monroe County Jail and work with the present chief deputy, Randy White, for whom he allegedly bought votes […]
Hodge Moves from April to October The 14-count vote buying conspiracy trial of Brian Keith “Wormy” Hodge of Vonore was rescheduled in a pre-trial conference on Friday, United States Magistrate Judge Clifford Shirley ordering the April 24 jury trial date reset and extended to Tuesday, October 17. Shirley granted a motion by Hodge’s attorney Michael […]
Prosecutors Asking Grand Jury for Additional Counts of Election Fraud One of two Monroe County residents federally indicted in February in an election fraud conspiracy investigation involving vote buying in the county’s 2014 election has been scheduled for grand jury study and consideration today, Thursday, with more indictments expected to be issued. According to a […]
April 2017 Missed an issue? Download it here!
Punishment Includes Up to Five Years Prison, $250K Fine One of two Monroe County residents who have been charged with vote buying and conspiracy in the federal election of 2014 has entered a plea agreement in federal court in Knoxville. According to paperwork filed in the United States Eastern District Court on Monday, Betty Jane Best, also known as Betty Hawkins, will formally plea on Tuesday, April 11, […]
Feds Unseal Grand Jury Indictment The sealed federal indictment against Brian “Wormy” Hodge and Betty Hawkins that was brought by a grand jury in Knoxville and filed in the United States Eastern District Court of Tennessee on February 7 was unsealed on Monday. It charges both defendants with one count of conspiracy to buy votes and 13 counts of vote buying. Count One […]
March 2017 Missed an issue? Download it here!
Federal Indictments Sealed The federal attorney general for the Eastern District of Tennessee has sealed its indictments against two Monroe County residents, according to court records that BUZZ obtained on Monday. The records, filed on February 7, 2017, specifically named “Brian Keith Hodge, aka Wormy” and “Betty Jane Best, aka Betty Hawkins.” On that date, United States Attorney Nancy Stallard Harr issued a “Motion to […]
There’s a reasonable possibility the word “racketeering” will be a word of interest in coming days. It’s seldom used in small towns but appears for the most part in cities and urban areas where crimes and gang members proliferate. Racketeering – it has a ring. It’s used to describe “organized crime.” For the record, racketeering is a criminal activity best defined in 18 US Code 1961 […]
In Custody Late Thursday, Out Friday A Monroe County Sheriff’s auxiliary deputy was placed in custody by federal agents at his workplace on Thursday and held in detention at the Blount County Jail for approximately 30 hours before being released. He was identified by the Blount County Jail‘s “online inmate system” as 32 year old Brian Keith “Worm” Hodge. Reportedly, agents arrested him while he […]
Between Madisonville and Tellico Plains sits a house that is home to young Ethan and his family. Ethan Rickman is an eight-year-old child who is a student at Tellico Plains Elementary School. He loves riding the bus to school and back home each day. And he actually leaves home with excitement each morning, ready to […]
February 2017 Missed an issue? Download it here!
January 2017 Missed an issue? Download it here!
Reaching out to East Tennessee’s Literary Community Tabitha Prock East Tennessee is a place filled with natural beauty and rich cultural heritage to which writers of all genres have been drawn including James Agee, Alex Haley, and Cormack McCarthy. An exciting convergence of our local literary community will take place Saturday, April 30 from 10 […]
Tabitha Prock Jasmine Wade is a bubbly two-year-old little girl who loves Spongebob Square Pants, Hello Kitty, and her new baby brother. Daddy is her best friend and mommy is the center of her world. In a recent visit to East Tennessee Children’s Hospital (ETCH), it was determined that Jasmine had an inoperable mass on […]
It’s that time of year again! United Way supports MyFreeTaxes.com for those that have earned under $62,000 in 2015 you will be able to get your taxes filed for FREE! 72% of Americans are unaware that they qualify for MyFreeTaxes. Only four in ten are unaware of the Child Tax Credit, while fewer than 60% […]