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Friday Night shooting on Rossville Boulevard

Friday Night shooting on Rossville Boulevard

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Chattanooga Police are investigating another shooting on Friday night.

This one happened near the McDonald’s restaurant on Rossville Boulevard in South Chattanooga around 8 PM.

Police tell us that a male was critically shot.

At one point, they were looking for an SUV with possible suspects inside.

If you have any information on the case, please call Chattanooga Police.

Police are also investigating another shooting this afternoon on Holtzclaw Avenue outside the Chattanooga Zoo.

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Shooting investigation at 3rd Street & Holtzclaw Friday afternoon

Shooting investigation at 3rd Street & Holtzclaw Friday afternoon

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Chattanooga Police blocked traffic this afternoon at East 3rd Street and Holtzclaw Avenue over a shooting investigation.

We’re not sure of the extent of injuries or what happened at this point.

But police were looking at a grey four door Nissan in front of the Chattanooga Zoo entrance around 3 PM.

The shooting victim was inside the vehicle and taken to the hospital.

If you have any information on the case, please call Chattanooga Police.

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Hankins pleads guilty to Home Invasion murder

Hankins pleads guilty to Home Invasion murder

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Miles Hankins has pleaded guilty to second degree murder in a home invasion two years ago.

Prosecutors say Hanks and two accomplices broke into a home on Hickory Valley Road in June of 2018 to rob Christoper Robinson.

Robinson was fatally shot during the robbery.

Prosecutors say Hankins actually fired shots at two twin brothers the day before that at the Glass Street Market.

In the plea deal, Hankins will serve a full 30 years in prison.

The cases against Kevion Hubbard and Ticalvius Armour for the same home invasion are still pending in court.

June 29, 2018

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Truck knocks out power in NC mountain town

Truck knocks out power in NC mountain town

ANDREWS, North Carolina (WDEF) – A big rig took down the power on Froday in Andrews, North Carolina.

Mayor James Reid posted a photo of the overturned truck.

He says it clipped a traffic light in town first and then eventually ran into a power line that flipped him over.

 

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Four more Covid-19 deaths in Hamilton County

Four more Covid-19 deaths in Hamilton County

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – The Hamilton County Health Department reports four more local deaths from Covid-19.

The total is now 53.

The latest victims include a woman who wasn’t even showing symptoms when she was tested.

Here is the Health Department breakdown of the four new fatalities:

  • #50: 61-70 year old African-American, non-Hispanic male with multiple underlying conditions.
  • #51: 61-70 year old African-American female with no underlying conditions and who was asymptomatic at the time of testing.
  • #52: 71-80 year old African-American, non-Hispanic male with multiple underlying conditions.
  • #53: 71-80 year old white, non-Hispanic male with multiple underlying conditions.

“We send our sincerest sympathies to these families,” said Health Department Administrator Becky Barnes, “We urge everyone to maintain their vigilance against this disease by wearing a mask, practicing social distance, avoiding large gatherings of people in any setting, and practicing good hand washing etiquette.”

While the hospitalized, ICU and fatality numbers are still high, the overall new cases in Hamilton County have been dropping over the last week.

Our 94 new cases on Friday are the highest in 10 days, which is a major improvement over the previous two weeks.

Hospitalizations are flat and even the high ICU numbers have dropped the last two days.

Here are the new cases Friday for surrounding counties:

45  Bradley/Cleveland

23  Walker/LaFayette (1 new death of a woman 90+ years with pre-existing conditons)

12  Bledsoe/Pikeville

11  McMinn/Athens

5   Cherokee/Murphy NC (1 is hospitalized)

4   Grundy/Altamont

4   Polk/Benton

4   Sequatchie/Dunlap

3   Marion/Jasper

3   Rhea/Dayton

 

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Top Golf is open for business

Top Golf is open for business

EAST RIDGE, Tenn. (WDEF)- There are some businesses in the Tennessee Valley that are opening during the pandemic.

East Ridge Top Golf finally opened it’s doors today.

Chattanooga’s @Topgolf is officially open today. It’s safe to say I’m NOT a professional golfer! But, I’ll have the details on what you can expect tonight at 6! @wdefnews12 pic.twitter.com/musHXErhae

— Danielle Moss (@SunnyD_wx) August 7, 2020

Richard Werhle, Top Golf’s General Manager says, “Whew! It is finally grand opening day and we get to open these doors. It has been a process. It has been a journey for all of us here at top golf. But, we are so excited to bring this new concept here to Chattanooga, the East Ridge community and just finally get ready to open our doors today.”

There have been many set backs due to the Coronavirus but those doors opened at 10 o’clock this morning with a line!

Guests can expect a few changes that are put in place to keep them safe.

There’s only six people per golfing bay.

Each bay is separated by plastic dividers.

Masks are required for employees and strongly suggested for guest.

Top Golf has even hired a dedicated team to make sure all shared areas are disinfected at all times.

“I think that’s the biggest thing for us at top golf right now. We feel comfortable being able to safely open right now because of the measures that we have put in”, adds Werhle.

Unlike other Top Golf locations, the one in East Ridge is one story.

Some frequent top golfers were worried about the new concept.

But, Ethan Lamberth says that the unique feel is something that he could get used to.

“This one, you don’t have baskets underneath the flags. It’s more of a top tracer type of a thing. So, it’s actually a different cool experience. So, this one, I kind of like it more because it tells you everything that you need to know right away instead of a little delay”, says Lamberth.

Top Golf is open seven days a week. from 10 AM until 11 PM.

Except Friday and Saturday when there are open until midnight.

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Weather Update: Saturday’s Forecast – August 8th, 2020

Weather Update: Saturday’s Forecast – August 8th, 2020

Tennessee Valley (WDEF): Very Hot & Dry as a Bone for Saturday!

Waking up Saturday morning to clear, sunny skies with temperatures near 70. It will continue to be a quiet day, however, temperatures will start to heat up quickly. Highs tomorrow will soar near 95, with heat index values in the upper 90s, even reach 100s in some areas.

Mainly dry and very hot for Sunday, with mostly sunny skies.  High temperatures will be near 96. Humidity will linger on, so expect heat index values to be near the triple digits once again.

This next week looks to be very hot with above average temperatures near the mid 90s. We will have better rain chances starting Monday and continuing through the week.

90 & 70 are our seasonal highs and lows.

Make sure you & your family stay in touch with us. Remember the Storm Team 12 app can always bring you the latest weather alerts for your location as well as Titan Radar. Download it for free from your app store – just search WDEF Weather”. 

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Stuff the Bus Event at Walmart

Stuff the Bus Event at Walmart

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – It’s time to head back to school and the Salvation Army is collecting supplies for students for the Stuff the Bus event. 

The event is held at several Walmart locations and shoppers visiting Walmart can purchase and drop off school supplies for students in need. 

The Salvation Army is holding this event from Friday August 7th to Sunday August 9th. 

The Salvation Army says everyone needs a fresh start for the new school year 

“We recognize whether kids are going back to school in person or online school supplies are still so incredibly important. This makes sure kids are not only excited but also make sure they have the resources they need to start the school year right,” says Lauren Russek with the Salvation Army.

Participating Locations are the Walmart Supercenter at:
2020 Gunbarrel Road,
3040 Battlefield Pkwy,
2625 North Hwy 27,
3550 Cummings Hwy,
501 Signal Mtn Road,
490 Greenway View Dr,
5588 Little Debbie Pkwy,
525 Kimball Crossing Dr,
9334 Dayton Pike,
5764 Tn-153.

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Weather Update: Friday Morning’s Forecast – August 7th, 2020

Weather Update: Friday Morning’s Forecast – August 7th, 2020

Tennessee Valley (WDEF): A Drier And Hotter Weekend Ahead!

This Morning:  Any showers will diminish,  becoming fair this morning and a lot of fog, very patchy & dense in much of the areas. Most of the morning lows will  fall between 65 & 70.

This Afternoon: Mostly sunny, drier, and hotter for Friday, with highs back in the low 90’s.

Tonight: Mostly clear skies will continue Friday night with lows in the upper 60’s. Again, we may see a few more areas of fog developing.

Mainly dry and very hot for the weekend ahead, with mostly sunny skies.  Highs each day will be near 95.  Quite hot and humid for much of the upcoming week also, with scattered afternoon showers and thunderstorms possible each day with highs in the low 90’s through Wednesday – and possibly beyond.

90 & 70 are our seasonal highs and lows.

Make sure you & your family stay in touch with us. Remember the Storm Team 12 app can always bring you the latest weather alerts for your location as well as Titan Radar. Download it for free from your app store – just search WDEF Weather”. 

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Will the pandemic tame the World’s Longest Yardsale?

Will the pandemic tame the World’s Longest Yardsale?

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) What will you find at the World’s Longest Yardsale?

“Hey y’all, Travis here. We’ve got a wonderful spot for the 127. We have CBD oil. We have fried apple pie, peach pies, funnel cakes, 127 yard sale T-shirts, Hot dog T-shirts. And don’t forget the best hotdogs on the 127 right here on Signal Mountain.”

The World’s Longest Yard sale is on this year, despite the pandemic.

It started this morning and runs through through Sunday.

Although it s best to bring a mask , a lot of people didn’t today.

But most did better at social distancing.

Some people are worried about large crowds, but our David Moore, who visited several sites on Signal Mountain, says he didn’t see crowds at most places.

But he talked to visitors from other cities and states.

Mary: We can’t wait, yeah. We can’t wait. We would have come yesterday, which I kinda think is the first day Of the sale. Busy and so here we are of the sale; busy and so here we are.

Mary: The weather is great. Yeah. That makes it really nice. It seems like maybe there is maybe a few less booths; that we haven’t been all the way out yet.

Natural Sound: Pensacola Florida, she’s from Alabama. Florida, Florida, Pensacola, and the one hiding over there is from Alabama. We’ve been coming for years. This is my mother she is 90 years old and she can knock your legs off. [Notes:Laughter] She does that to all of us. She is in good health and we just enjoy coming and this is all just family and friends.

Mary: It’s so much fun because, because being close we get to come and see everything. And if you say something sometimes if you don’t want to pay quite that price you can say I will be back tomorrow and just check again and there it is. You get a good deal.

Laura: And it just feels like kind of this old fashion slice of American pie. That’s what, it’s just fun. People, talk to people who have come all over the place and… yeah.”

The yard sale runs down Highway 127 through the Sequatchie Valley and over Signal Mountain and into Alabama.

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An upset, new mayors and lots of school board changes in Thursday elections

An upset, new mayors and lots of school board changes in Thursday elections

JASPER, Tennessee (WDEF) – There were lots of first time winners but not many upsets in the Thursday elections in Tennessee.

However, people in Marion County got a new representative in the State House.

State lawmaker Thomas Tillis was upset in the Republican Primary for District 93.

Tillis, Thomas

39%
Cuevas, Vincent

14%
Warner, Todd

47%

 

Also on Thursday, Spring City and Englewood got new mayors.

Polk County barely passed a sales tax referendum for new school construction.

And Cleveland’s City Council is getting some new faces.

See all the other local races here.

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Man brings a hand grenade to the fire station

Man brings a hand grenade to the fire station

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – What do you do with an old hand grenade?

A Chattanooga man tried to drop it off at the local fire station in Hixson on Thursday.

He said he was moving when he found the old WWII Japanese hand grenade that belonged to his father-in-law.

He brought it with him in his truck, hoping the fire department would know what to do with it.

They called the Bomb Squad, which properly disposed of it.

 

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TVA reverses tech worker decision after President Trump firing

TVA reverses tech worker decision after President Trump firing

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WDEF) — The Tennessee Valley Authority has announced it will rescind a decision to lay off its in-house technology workers.

The authority had been planning on replacing those workers with contractors who rely heavily on foreign workers under the H-1B visa program.

President Trump fired TVA chairman Skip Thompson Monday, and threatened to remove other board members if they continued to hire foreign labor.

Since then, other TVA leaders met with White House administrators about how to preserve U.S. jobs.

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Sheriff arrests suspect in “Fast & Furious” fatal wreck

Sheriff arrests suspect in “Fast & Furious” fatal wreck

CHATSWORTH, Georgia (WDEF) – The Murray County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a suspect in a hit and run crash that killed a young couple.

The crash happened July 29th near Eton on Highway 411.

A witness told investigators that a car pulled up behind a Ford Mustang and rammed it several times.

The witness said the car pulled around to the side and rammed it again.

The Mustang spun into a tree in front of a mobile home, with debris hitting the home.

The witness said it looked like a scene from a Fast and Furious movie.

19 year old Tommy Nickels and his 20 year old wife, Kristen, were both killed in the crash.

Investigators spent six days looking for the other vehicle that fled the scene.

But on Wednesday afternoon, they visited the home of tony Brown on Highway 411 North.

the Sheriff says Brown ran but was quickly chased down.

Investigators say they found the burned remains of the suspect Suzuki Reno from the incident.

They are now processing what is left of the car.

Meanwhile, Tony Brown faces charges of Aggravated Assault w/vehicle, Felony Murder (2counts), and 2nd Degree Arson.

Since the investigation is ongoing, Sheriff Langford is not releasing a motive for the incident.

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Covid-19 warning about Windy Gap Young Life Camp

Covid-19 warning about Windy Gap Young Life Camp

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – – The Hamilton County Health Department issues a Covid-19 exposure warning for a summer camp in North Carolina.

Case investigators determined that several campers from the Hamilton County area attended the camp while they were infectious.

It is the Windy Gap Young Life Camp in Weaverville, northeast of Asheville.

The week in question is July 24 through July 31.

Anyone who attended the camp during those dates should get tested and monitor their symptoms.

“If you have been exposed to someone with the virus you should get tested, quarantine from others for 14 days and monitor yourself for symptoms,” said Health Department Administrator Becky Barnes.”

If symptoms do occur, they want you to stay at home except for getting tested or seeing a doctor.

If symptoms become worse, seek medical care quickly. Symptoms of COVID-19 may include fever, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, recent change in smell or taste, headache, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting, or other symptoms as recognized by the CDC.

You can get free testing this week at:

  • The Health Department’s testing site at the Alstom Plant, 1125 Riverfront Parkway, Chattanooga, TN 37402, is open daily from 7AM-11AM.
  • Saturday, August 8, at Faith Family Chattanooga Church, 2505 E 43rd St, Chattanooga, TN 37407, from 10AM-1PM.
  • Sunday, August 9, at Faith Family Chattanooga Church, 2505 E 43rd St, Chattanooga, TN 37407, from 12PM-3PM.

You can reserve a free ride by calling (423) 315-3994 Monday-Friday 8AM-6PM, Saturday and Sunday 10AM-2PM. Rides to the testing sites must be scheduled the previous day.

For more information, call the Health Department’s COVID-19 hotline at (423) 209-8383. But do not call the camp.

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Hamilton County voting locations see decrease in lines

Hamilton County voting locations see decrease in lines

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- Tennessee voters have been at the polls all day today.

They have many decisions to make including a heated republican race for the U.S. Senate and many school board races in our area.

News 12 went to Concord Baptist Church on East Brainerd, The Bethlehem Center in Alton Park and Signal Mountain Presbyterian in Signal Mountain.

The lines have been manageable and there hasn’t been a lot of waiting.

Concord Baptist Church is usually a busy polling location.

Today, there was no line or wait for voters to punch their ballot.

James Baldwin says that he will vote by any means necessary.

He says, “Since 1988, I have only missed one election.”

Baldwin says that all of the new COVID-19 precautions do not bother him.

“It doesn’t really matter as long as I get to vote. Things are a little bit spread out than what they normally are because of the social distancing. Before, they would only take up about half of that room. Now, they’ve got it all (laughs) and then some”, adds Baldwin. 

The Hamilton County Elections Commission says that the decrease in voting traffic is due to the increase in early voting.

Director of the  Hamilton County Elections Commission, Kerry Steelman, says, “I think that the lower turnout, or the decreased turnout on election day may be more reflective on the increase of absentee balloting or early voting.”

According to election officials, early voting accounts for 50% of the total vote turnout.

But this year, absentee ballots have seen an unexpected rise.

“One thing that we did see, that was unique this year, was a substantial increase in absentee voting an approximately 600% increase in absentee ballots were submitted during the early voting time frame,” adds Steelman.

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Weather Update: Thursday Night’s Forecast – August 6th, 2020

Weather Update: Thursday Night’s Forecast – August 6th, 2020

Tennessee Valley (WDEF): Drier And Hotter Times Ahead!

Tonight:  Any showers will diminish,  becoming fair overnight with lows back in the upper 60’s to around 70. And again, we’ll probably see a few areas of fog developing.

Mostly sunny, drier, and hotter for Friday with highs back in the low 90’s.  Mostly clear skies will continue Friday night with lows in the upper 60’s.

Mainly dry and very hot for the weekend ahead, with mostly sunny skies.  Highs each day will be near 95.  Quite hot and humid for much of next week also, with scattered afternoon showers and thunderstorms possible each day with highs in the low 90’s through Wednesday – and possibly beyond.

90 & 70 are our seasonal highs and lows.

Make sure you & your family stay in touch with us. Remember the Storm Team 12 app can always bring you the latest weather alerts for your location as well as Titan Radar. Download it for free from your app store – just search WDEF Weather”. 

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Former Employees speak out against local Chimpanzee Sanctuary

Former Employees speak out against local Chimpanzee Sanctuary

BLUE RIDGE, Ga (WDEF) – In 2014 Project Chimps, in Blue Ridge, Georgia, was founded to help provide life long care for chimpanzees after their time inside a medical research facility. 

Now years later former employees are speaking out against the facility after they say the chimps are not being properly taken care of.

“These chimps have a life expectancy of 40 to 50 years. Some of them are coming to the sanctuary and they are only 9 years old. We have to do better. If they are going to be at a sanctuary for decades they need to be going outside. They do not need to be housed inside a concrete building. FOr that to happen leadership is going to have to be in place. They will have to actually prioritize the chimp’s needs and who has chimp experience,” says Crystal Alba, former employee for Project Chimps. 

Former employees shared Pictures and videos from inside the facility showing the chimps with infectious wounds, low weight , and major hair loss.

The employees say all they want is for the sanctuary to return to the foundations of their mission statement. 

“We want the focus to return to the chimps, how the sanctuary can benefit them and how they can improve their quality of life. It is a sanctuary for chimps; their mission is to care for them. At the core we are just pushing for project chimps to uphold their own mission and to provide the care they promised the chimps,” says Lindsay Vanderhoogt, former employee for Project Chimps. 

Project Chimps addresses this issue on their website page stating that the allegations are riddled with false Allegations , inaccuracies, and misleading information presented out of context. Project Chimps stands ready to openly and honestly respond to our fans and supporters with any questions you may have about such information. For more information on Project Chimps click here.

For more information one Project Chimps Responses to the Help the Chimps Movement click here.

Project Chimps says they are suing Alba and Vanderhoogt for accessing confidential information and making malicious, false, and defamatory public allegations about the operations of the sanctuary and the condition of the primates under its care.

Alba and Vanderhoogt say being sued is worth it to help fight for the chimps to receive better care. There is a GofundMe set up to help pay for lawyers and their fight for the chimps.

More information on the former employees fight for the chimps can be found on their Petition or Website.

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Weather Update: Thursday Afternoon’s Forecast – August 6th, 2020

Weather Update: Thursday Afternoon’s Forecast – August 6th, 2020

Tennessee Valley (WDEF): After Today, We Have Drier And Hotter Days Ahead!

This Afternoon: Not much change for today, as we’ll see a few isolated late day showers and storms possible. Plenty warm, but not oppressively hot with highs near 90. The heat index will make it feel a bit hotter.

Tonight:  Becoming fair overnight with lows back in the upper 60’s to around 70. And again, we’ll probably see a few areas of fog developing.

Extended Forecast:  Mostly sunny and hotter for Friday with highs back in the low 90’s. Mainly dry and very hot for the weekend ahead, with mostly sunny skies.  Highs each day will be near 95.  Quite hot and humid for much of next week also, with scattered afternoon showers and thunderstorms possible each day with highs in the low 90’s through Wednesday – and possibly beyond.

90 & 70 are our seasonal highs and lows.

Make sure you & your family stay in touch with us. Remember the Storm Team 12 app can always bring you the latest weather alerts for your location as well as Titan Radar. Download it for free from your app store – just search WDEF Weather”. 

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Unemployment Claims in Tennessee Continue To Fall

Unemployment Claims in Tennessee Continue To Fall

NASHVILLE, TN (WDEF) – Both new and continued unemployment claims in Tennessee fell from the previous week. New claims fell to 11,690 from 19,461 for the week of August 1. Continued claims fell for the 12th week in a row with 224,093 claims last week. It was 242,397 in the previous week. These numbers are from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce.

Hamilton County dropped to 542 after posting 997 new claims in the previous week. Shelby County continues to be the hardest hit county in the state with 2,321 new claims after 4,648 the previous week. Davidson County was the second highest with 1,367 new claims.

Statewide Data:

Week Ending DateNumber of New Claims FiledContinued Claims
March 14, 20202,70216,342
March 21, 202039,09616,098
March 28, 202094,49234,570
April 4, 2020116,141112,438
April 11, 202074,772199,910
April 18, 202068,968267,053
April 25, 202043,792324,543
May 2, 202037,319321,571
May 9, 202029,308325,095
May 16, 202028,692314,487
May 23, 202026,041310,126
May 30, 202022,784302,260
June 6, 202021,417292,234
June 13, 202019,925280,593
June 20, 202021,155266,596
June 27, 202022,256262,224
July 4, 202025,843256,645
July 11, 202022,431251,924
July 18, 202025,794243,405
July 25, 202019,461242,397
August 1, 202011,690224,093
Claims Since March 15771,274
Southeast TennesseeNew ClaimsContinuous Claims
Hamilton County54212,366
Bradley County2423,301
McMinn County811,450
Rhea County64933
Marion County42729
Polk County36297
Grundy County60318
Meigs County37376
Bledsoe County29172
Sequatchie County32330

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