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WDEF News 12 - Local News
Updated: 50 min 19 sec ago

Young and Wiser Inc of Chattanooga Aim To Raise Awareness of College Campus Sexual Assaults

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 10:54pm
CHATTANOOGA,TN, (WDEF)-"Actually I was a victim of sexual assault and domestic violence and going through the things I went through I did a lot of things alone".

Jodi Siebert is now a member of Chattanooga non-profit Young and Wiser and is dedicating her life to protecting young women from sexual abuse.

"I went through periods where I was not essentially doing the most positive things in my life and you know I felt alone and struggled to trust other individuals".

Young and Wiser founder Tom Bissonette has already done an 8 state college campus speech tour raising awareness of sexual assault and is gearing up for a busy summer.

"Individual developmental assessments we do mentoring we train high school staff and teachers, we train college faculty and counselors".

1 in 5 women on  US college campuses now admit to experiencing some form of sexual assault.

"Sexual assault is epidemic on college campuses, if you pick up a newspaper or watch a TV program you are going to hear about sexual assault".

Young and Wiser will spend the next few months working with sexual assault victims and also preparing high school seniors for college life.

The US justice department estimates that only 2% of sexual abuse victims who were drunk during an attack will report it to authorities.

For More Information:

Male shot at Highway 58 Aparments

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 3:59pm
Chattanooga TN (WDEF)- A male suffers a gunshot wound after a shooting at Highway 58 Apartments. 

It happened on Saturday just after 12:30 pm on 5102 Hwy 58.

Chattanooga Police say a male was found suffering from a gunshot wound when they arrived on the scene. 

The victim was transported by HCEMS to a local hospital. 

There is no suspect information available at this time. 

The investigation is on-going. 

Chattanooga Police ask anyone with information regarding this crime to call 423-698-2525. 

We will give you more information as it becomes available. 



Former Officer Nathan Rogers passes away from brain cancer

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 2:11pm
Chattanooga, TN (WDEF)- Former Officer Nathan Rogers passed away Friday evening from brain cancer. 

He was diagnosed with Grade three glioblastoma last year by doctors at Vanderbilt Medical Center. 

Instead of surgery, Rogers went through chemotherapy and radiation.

He was a former Marine who served two tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. 

Rogers was 31-years-old. 

Ga. officials launching child vehicle safety campaign

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 1:19pm

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia child welfare officials are launching a campaign meant to raise awareness of the dangers of leaving children in unattended vehicles.

The Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning is launching the Look Again campaign Wednesday with an event at the state Capitol.

The gathering at 1:30 p.m. is expected to feature Gov. Nathan Deal, first lady Sandra Deal, Department of Early Care and Learning Commissioner Amy Jacobs and others.


©2015 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Update: 17-year-old girl dies in Bradley County crash

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 11:12am
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The family will receive friends at Eastside Church of Christ in Cleveland, and the funeral will follow at 4:00 pm. 

A gofundme account has been set up and has already raised $7,000. If you would like to donate, visit the related links box. 

Update: According to our media partners, The Cleveland Daily Banner, 20-year-old Cody Judd of Decatur was the driver.

A criminal investigation and charges are pending against Judd.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------Bradley County, TN (WDEF) -  Cleveland Police Department Officers responded to a vehicle crash on North Lee Hwy at Tasso Lane Wednesday.

Officials said the crash involved a Toyota Camry and a logging truck.

Spokesperson Evie West confirmed a 17-year-old girl died in the wreck.

Officials with the Tennessee Highway Patrol are working the crash.

The Cleveland Police Department and Bradley County Sheriff’s Office are assisting as well.

VW offers free access to Bike Chattanooga

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 10:17am
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF) - Volkswagen will sponsor free 24-hour access to the Bike Chattanooga bike share system for the public to have an alternative mode of transportation on race day, Monday, May 25. A credit or debit card is required to initiate rental but cards will not be charged.

The complimentary 24-hour Access includes unlimited station-to-station trips 60 minutes or less. Trips exceeding 60 minutes will incur overage fees that will be covered by the customer. See for more information.

Whitmore and Walsh to compete in local Para-cycling National Championships

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 9:59am
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF) - Jamie Whitmore and Jill Walsh will compete in the 2015 Para-cycling National Championships from May 23-25 here in Chattanooga. Both are members of the US National Paralympic Cycling Team, and Whitmore is a 2014 ESPY award-winner and the 2013 Para-cycling National C3 Champion, while Walsh is the 2014 Para-cycling National T2 Champion.

The two are not only serious contenders, but are members of TeamUp, the first and only national team of people to advocate for foot drop, or paralysis of the lower leg, ankle, or foot. Whitmore and Walsh will be supported by national marathoner and founder of TeamUp, Beth Deloria.

Memorial Day weekend events

Sat, 05/23/2015 - 9:12am
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF) - The 1st Annual Memorial Day Service will be held this weekend in honor of the Vietnam Veterans of America - Chapter 203, 2nd largest chapter in the United States, and Lakewood Memory Gardens will pay tribute to all Veterans. The event will be held on Saturday, May 23, 2015, at 1 pm at Lakewood Memory Gardens, which is located at 325 Greenslake Road, Rossville, GA. 

The 6th Calvary Museum invites the public to attend the Memorial Service at the 6th Calvary Memorial Garden which is located on Barnhardt Circle near the 6th Calvary Museum, Sunday, May 24, 2015. The 10 am church service includes a blessing of the bikes and memorial service for 4/6 aviators Captain Anne M. Montgomery, Chief Warrant Officer 3 Frank A. Buoniconti III, Chief Warrant Officer 3 Shan J. Satterfield and Chief Warrant Officer 2 Lucas D. Sigfrid.

Members of the 3rd Squadron / 12th Calvary or 3/12 from across the country will celebrate their 114th Anniversary and fly their regimental colors on The Post at Fort Oglethorpe's flag pole. The flag ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, May 23, 2015 at 10 am. The 12th was stationed at Fort Oglethorpe 1905-1909. 

Bradley County chase and arrests

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 11:34pm
Bradley County, TN (WDEF) - Bradley County deputies arrest two people in a stolen car from Florida after a chase on Friday night.

The pursuit traveled through 20th Street and Tasso Lane area.

Deputies wedged the stolen vehicle between two patrol cars in the parking lot of the Whirlpool Plant on Benton Pike.

The two suspect were still inside the vehicle.

Deputies found a loaded gun inside the car and open containers of alcohol.

Cleveland Police and the Tennessee High Patrol helped with the capture of these two suspects.

They will be booked into the Bradley County Jail.

Deputies continue to investigate and work with Florida officials about the stolen car.

Chattanooga firefighters tackle attic fire Friday evening

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 7:44pm
Chattanooga, TN (WDEF) - The Chattanooga Fire Department put out an attic fire Friday evening.
        It happened around 6:00pm at a home on Oak View Drive.
        When fire crews arrived, the homeowner told officials everyone made it out of the house safely.
        The homeowner told firefighters they smelled something burning and saw flames in the attic.
        Crews quickly extinguished the fire and determined the cause was an electrical problem.
        Crews had to cut power to the residence.
        No one was injured.

Road closures for USA Cycling Professional Road Race this weekend

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 7:23pm
Chattanooga, TN (WDEF) - The USA Cycling Professional Time Trial takes place Saturday with the USA Cycling Professional Road Race on Monday.

Road closures will start Friday night for the time trial, and Sunday for the race.

Click on the related link for a map of the road closures.

You can also check out the race route and detours.

Marion County man arrested by TBI

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 5:52pm
Marion County, TN (WDEF) - The TBI arrests a Marion County man today on charges of promoting prostitution and money laundering.

Officials started investigating 53-year-old James McGlamery in June of 2013.

TBI agents found that McGlamery was involved in building various massage parlors and spas across the state.

The Whiteside man was arrested in Marion County early Friday morning.

He is being held on a $250,000 dollar bond.

Ringgold Man Claims Plumber Benjamin Guest Stole 263K Worth Of His Dead Wife's Jewelry

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 5:51pm
RINGGOLD, GA, (WDEF)-"An honest man has no chance in this world when something goes wrong, a thief will beat me home from court."

Ray Bean lost his wife to cancer just a few weeks ago.

Two days after the burial, Bean claims plumber and convicted sex offender Benjamin Guest came to help with a pipe issue.

"Rapist of a 12 year old girl that is running loose, stole 263,000 dollars worth of memories from my wife's jewelry chest."

Bean's is just one of a number of homes that investigators believe could have been targeted by 37 year old Benjamin Guest.

"They have the paper work where he sold it for 30,000 dollars scrap melted it."

North Georgia pawn stores tell us the price of gold has dropped in recent months.

One former pawn broker says he does all he can to help law enforcement tackle jewelry thieves.

"You got to hold it 10 days, we are on leads online, so when we get it, it goes straight online, so if it's stolen they know the day I take it and they come give it back to the owner."

Ray wants tighter legal restrictions for sex offenders and thieves and is being supported by family and friends.

Guest was convicted of child molestation back in 2000.
He also goes by the name "Chan" and lives in Ringgold.

TWRA Is Watching You!

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 5:16pm
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF-TV) -- One of the worst parts of a Wildlife Officer's job is dealing with accidents and fatalities.
Most fatalities in our area happen in water related accidents.
And with the 2015 boating season underway, TWRA Officers have a message to share.

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency Officers are trying to get the 2015 boating season off on the right foot.
You'd think that most people who spend a lot of their time on the water every summer wouldn't need too many reminders, but a refresher is always helpful.

BARRY BAIRD, TWRA, DISTRICT 32 BOATING OFFICER "There's a lot of things going on,but we're out enforceing laws and rules and regulations....we enforce anything from registration violations, having the appropriate current registration, to boating under the influence."

The leading type of boating incident in 2014 was a collision with another vessel.
When TWRA added it up...monetary damages reported in 2014 reached 1-million-117
And that's actually down from 2013 statistics.

BARRY BAIRD "Chickamauga Lake is tied for number one in the state with Norris lake for boating accidents last year."

Eighty people were injured in boating related incidents in 2014 and 17 individuals lost their lives.
At Harrison bay the officers spend the morning checking those who are already out on the water.

BARRY BAIRD, TWRA "Even if you're unfortunately have a boating accident ...wearing your life-jacket ..knowing where it imake sure its in good condition ..and knowing how to use it...could literally mean the difference between life and death."

TWRA says even one fatality on the state's lakes and waterways is one too many.
One last rule, heed the signs and be cautious especially on high usage days on the water.

Anger over new Tennessee paying $46K for a new logo

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 5:11pm
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Tennessee has spent $46,000 for the design of a new logo featuring the white letters TN on colors patterned on the state flag.

WSMV-TV reports that the state hired advertising and marketing company GS&F to design the new logo.

A spokesman for Gov. Bill Haslam said the new logo is needed to give the state a more unified look on signs and letterhead.

The governor's office said the new logo will be gradually introduced as current stationary runs out.

The new state branding follows a decision by the Tennessee Department of Transportation to replace a green-themed symbol introduced by Haslam's Democratic predecessor Phil Bredesen. The department in 2011 introduced a new logo featuring the TDOT acronym on a red field the shape of the state.

New president recommended for Chattanooga State

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 4:02pm
Chattanooga, TN (WDEF) - The Tennessee Board of Regents Chancellor recommends Flora Tydings as Chattanooga State's next president.

The board will meet on May 27th at a special called meeting.

Board members are expected to approve of Tydings.

She would replace the Interim President Fannie Hewlett, who agreed to serve after Jim Catanzaro retired as president of the college in December. 

Tydings has been the president of Athens Technical College for 12 years.

She's expected to start at Chattanooga State on July 13th.

For more information about Tydings, click on the related link.

Senator Bob Corker's bipartisan Iran nuclear review act becomes law

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 3:24pm
Washington, DC (WDEF) – U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement after the president signed the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 into law. The bill, which passed the Senate 98 to 1 and the House of Representatives 400 to 25, requires congressional review of any final nuclear agreement with Iran before the president can waive sanctions imposed by Congress.

“After more than a year of bipartisan work and a veto threat from the White House, I am pleased to see this bill become law so that any final nuclear agreement with Iran will have to go through Congress where the American people will have a say and lawmakers will have a vote,” said Corker. “I appreciate the strong bipartisan support for this effort that demonstrates Congress’s determination to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon. With the role of Congress now guaranteed, the administration must address the many significant concerns raised by Congress, and our negotiators should take advantage of the added leverage to force further concessions from the Iranians so that any agreement reached is verifiable, enforceable and can assure the American people Iran will not be able to develop a nuclear weapon.”

The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 contains the following key provisions:

Congressional Review: Within five days of concluding a comprehensive agreement with Iran, the president must submit to Congress (1) the text of the agreement and all related materials, (2) a verification assessment on Iranian compliance, and (3) a certification that the agreement meets U.S. non-proliferation objectives and does not jeopardize U.S. national security, including not allowing Iran to pursue nuclear-related military activities.

No Suspension of Congressional Sanctions During Review Period: The president is prohibited from suspending, waiving or otherwise reducing congressional sanctions for up to 52 days after submitting the agreement to Congress. Following an initial review period of 30 days, the legislation includes an additional 12 days if Congress passes a bill and sends it to the president. If the president vetoes the legislation, Congress would have an additional 10 days to override a veto. If the deal is submitted between July 10 and September 7, the review period increases to up to 82 days (60 days plus 12 days for the president to veto and 10 more days for Congress to override a veto). During this period, Congress may hold hearings and approve, disapprove or take no action on the agreement. Passage of a joint resolution of disapproval (over a presidential veto) within the review period would permanently prevent the president from waiving or suspending the congressional sanctions.

Congressional Oversight and Iranian Compliance: After the congressional review period, the president would be required to provide an assessment to Congress every 90 days on Iran’s compliance with the agreement. In the event the president cannot certify compliance, or if the president determines there has been a material breach of the agreement, Congress could vote, on an expedited basis, to restore sanctions that had been waived or suspended under the agreement. It also requires the president to make a series of detailed reports to Congress on a range of issues, including Iran’s nuclear program, its ballistic missiles work, and its support for terrorism globally, particularly against Americans and our allies. With this information, Congress will be able to determine the appropriate response in the event of Iran sponsoring an act of terrorism against Americans.

Bradley County roundup

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 2:52pm
Bradley County, TN (WDEF) - Bradley County Sheriff's Deputies arrested 80 people in a 2 day warrant roundup.

Sheriff Eric Watson said, "We felt like it was time to clear out a backlog of arrest warrants that had built up over time. These people had warrants with a variety of charges that needed to be dealt with."

The Sheriff also praised his Patrol, Criminal Investigations, and Fugitive Divisions for their hard work, and promised there would be another warrant sweep soon.

EPB Asks For Rate Increase

Fri, 05/22/2015 - 10:19am
Chattanooga (WDEF) – The EPB wants to raise power rates by 3.5%.

They are asking the Board of Directors approve the rate hike at a vote in June.

It would take affect on July 1st.

EPB officials say it would be their first rate increase since 2011.

They say revenues from Fiber Optics have allowed the utility to defer rate increases over the last four years.

But now they need the money because of a combination of storm repairs and peak energy demands over the last few years..

If you use a thousand kWh of power a month, the rate high would add $3.50 to your monthly bill.

The 3.5% change includes increases to EPB’s base energy rate and the monthly customer charge.

“EPB is committed to delivering reliable energy and the best possible value to our customers,” said president and CEO Harold DePriest. “With this rate increase, we are committed to holding the line on additional rate increases for several years.”