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Ben Benton

Stories by Ben

Just about everything about this town’s Jiffy Burger lends itself to a seasoning-filled air of authenticity.

There will be a new sheriff in at least one Tennessee town after incumbents in Bledsoe, Grundy and McMinn counties defended their posts in primary races across the Chattanooga region.

In McMinn County early voting counts only, incumbent Sheriff Joe Guy is leading challenger Tim Smith 2,449 to 1,349 in the Republican primary there.

Early election tallies in Bledsoe County show incumbent Sheriff Jimmy Morris leading challenger Gary Johnson by 533 votes to 356 votes with six of 12 precincts reporting, and including early and absentee ballots.

Early and absentee election tallies in Altamont, Tenn., show incumbent Grundy County Sheriff Brent Myers is trailing Lindell Clint Shrum with the third contestant,

The TBI is investigating a couple of missing seized weapons at the Athens Police Department at the request of its police chief.

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — People who lived in the tri-state region on April 3, 1974, probably remember exactly where they were during the super outbreak of tornadoes that killed 150 people in Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia.

There is only one contested race in Marion County's Republican primary but the Democratic primary is loaded with battles for county mayor, County Commission, Juvenile Court judge, county clerk, trustee and register of deeds.

Editor's note: A twister that was part of the Super Outbreak of 1974 did heavy damage and claimed two lives in Cleveland, Tenn. This is reporter Ben Benton's personal account of that day.

The woman whose body was found in the passenger seat of a car that Franklin County, Tenn., authorities chased down Sunday was killed by blunt-force trauma to the head and upper body, authorities said.

Dispatchers across Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia in the Chattanooga region say there have been no weather-related problems with the passing of light storms this morning.

A man who grew up in Colorado's Rocky Mountains and started his career with the National Park Service as a volunteer at the Grand Canyon will head the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park starting this summer.

The Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park on each side of the Tennessee-Georgia line has a new superintendent, park officials have announced.

About 30 homes were damaged, and half of those destroyed by storms that struck South DeKalb County, Ala., about midnight, officials there said this morning.

A three-year local, state and federal investigation launched in connection with "a number" of overdose deaths has led authorities to seize records at Tennessee medical clinics in Franklin and Coffee counties, Franklin County Sheriff Tim Fuller said.

A man shot multiple times at a home under construction south of Pikeville lay dead all day Tuesday while the accused shooter and his companions kept working, Bledsoe County, Tenn., authorities said.

One man is in custody on homicide charges and another is dead of multiple gunshot wounds as Bledsoe County and state authorities try to sort out what happened at a location south of Pikeville, Tenn.

The primary ballot in Grundy County, Tenn., has eight contested local races and a total of 29 candidates.

The attorney for the now-fired arresting officer who took South Pittsburg, Tenn., City Administrator Sammy Burrows to jail on charges of obstruction of officer rights, resisting arrest, speeding and reckless driving is crying foul in the disposition of the case.

A night getting high on prescription pain medication patches led to the deaths of two Athens, Tenn., men who had been abusing the powerful painkiller fentanyl.

Authorities in Athens, Tenn., say two of three men who died Friday of apparent drug overdoses had misused the pain medication Fentanyl.

Authorities in Athens, Tenn., say two of three men who died Friday of apparent drug overdoses had misused the pain medication Fentanyl.

Officials in Pikeville, Tenn., say a downtown farmers market will tie together ongoing beautification and revitalization efforts with plans for a community kitchen.

A two-day search last week for clues in the 2011 disappearance of a Manchester, Tenn., man on property at Arnold Air Force Base in Coffee County didn't turn up any clues, but authorities hope new attention to the case will generate tips.

A former Whitwell High School bookkeeper was arrested Thursday on felony theft charges alleging she took more than $35,000 in school funds.

A former bookkeeper at Whitwell High School was arrested Thursday night by the Marion County Sheriff's Office for misappropriating more than $35,000 in school funds.

The youngest of two teens charged in the January assault of cyclist Anders Swanson on Raccoon Mountain was sentenced Thursday in Marion County Juvenile Court to probation and community service.

A single-vessel boating accident left an Ohio man dead and a Spring City, Tenn., man injured near a Meigs County campground on Watts Bar Lake Thursday afternoon.

A principal shuffle in Marion County, Tenn., will lead to two new faces being named to take the lead at schools in Jasper and Whitwell as soon as this summer, school system officials said.

A single-vessel boating accident left an Ohio man dead and a Spring City man injured near a campground on Watts Bar Lake this afternoon.

The youngest of two Marion County teens charged in the January assault of cyclist Anders Swanson was sentenced today in Marion County Juvenile Court to probation and community service.

A Fort Payne, Ala., man who is one of three people charged in the December slaying of Boaz resident Gary Lee Willis pleaded guilty to murder Monday in Marshall County, Ala.

Marion County Mayor John Graham was elected recently to be secretary of the Tennessee Association of County Mayors, an organization that represents county mayors and executives of the state's 95 counties.

A pair of local brothers sees an adventure destination in their 500 acres of Marion County land just west of the Lookout Valley community in Chattanooga.

As stormy springtime weather advances toward summer, DeKalb County, Ala., Emergency Management Agency officials are pushing residents to register for a new weather warning service.

U.S. Forest Service officials are drawing fire from nearby residents who say they were misled over some changes at Tumbling Creek Recreation Area in east Polk County.

Starr Regional Medical Center officials in Etowah, Tenn., want to add four geropsychiatric beds to the facility's existing in-patient geropsychiatric unit to boost capacity from 10 to 14.

Potential candidates for nonpartisan elected offices in Sequatchie County, Tenn., have until noon Thursday to file qualifying papers to run on the August ballot, election officials said.

DUNLAP, Tenn. -- Spring will bring some warmer temperatures for crews working on the Cagle Volunteer Fire Department's new fire hall in Sequatchie County.

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. -- The Upper Cumberland Development District in Putnam County is selling a "dream" to rid itself of a nightmare.

The Republican primary for county mayor leads the ballot in Franklin County, Tenn., where three men are vying for the GOP slot to take on the Democratic incumbent.

The Alabama Department of Transportation has announced today that normal traffic flow has been restored on the B.B. Comer Bridge which carries the southbound traffic of State Route 35, near Scottsboro.

A state case summary on a Catoosa County, Ga., girl who died New Year's Day from injuries she received while in foster care paints a black-and-blue picture of bruises, emotional trauma and nightmares over the last months of her life and discrepancies in accounts of how her injuries occurred.

A foster parent of a child who died New Year's Day from injuries reportedly received in a fall down stairs in Catoosa County waited seven hours before seeking help, according to a heavily redacted case summary documents obtained from the Georgia Department of Family and Children Services.

A petition circulated among Grundy County, Tenn., voters could create a speed bump in the long road to a new jail that officials propose to fund with a $7 million bond.

The Knox County Sheriff's Department and the Civil Air Patrol confirm a World War II-era single-engine plane reported missing Sunday has been found near Calderwood Dam, Tenn., officials with the Federal Aviation Administration said today.

The Fort Payne, Ala., man who netted a 25-year sentence in the shootings of two Fred's store employees in Rainsville now faces charges in another Fred's hold-up in Cedartown, Ga.

DeKalb County, Ala., officials say Kelly Jack Mayo, the man charged in 2012 with the shooting in Rainsville of two Fred's store employees during a robbery attempt has pleaded guilty to two counts of attempted murder.

Candidates for county mayor and sheriff in Bledsoe County, Tenn., will lead the biggest contests on the local ballot in May when voters head for the polls to decide four contested county primaries.

One man is dead and another hospitalized in a single-vehicle accident overnight on Lamontville Road near Highway 58 in Meigs County.

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