WDEF News 12 Now

Back To School Bashes help thousands of families across Hamilton County

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – This is the final weekend before school starts in Tennessee. Several groups, including the Hamilton County School District, wanted to get students and parents ready for what’s to come next Wednesday. The district held its Back To School Bash at the First Horizon Pavilion this morning. Thousands of families showed up to… ... Continue Reading
Storm brings down power lines & starts fires in Chattanooga

Storm brings down power lines & starts fires in Chattanooga

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – The Chattanooga Fire Department says it is dealing with several calls of wires down and flooding due to the rain in the area. One viewer called in saying several parts of East Brainerd have water along the street due to sewer backups. The fire department says the heavy rain may have caused… ... Continue Reading
Chatt State holds registration ‘resort’ day.

Chatt State holds registration ‘resort’ day.

It’s almost time head back to class and Chatt State kicked off the semester with a registration resort day. The event had food vendors, access to help with registration, and information on clubs and extracurriculars. Dr. Kisha Thomas is the Director of recruiting at Chatt State, she said she wanted to provide an atmosphere for… ... Continue Reading
21st Annual Minority Health Fair held this weekend at UTC

21st Annual Minority Health Fair held this weekend at UTC

The 21st Annual Hamilton County Minority Health Fair was held Saturday at the UTC University Center. This event addresses a major need in the community by providing free health services to underserved communities in Chattanooga.    Tony Sammons is the Co-Chair, he said this all started from a desire to educate.  “The Minority Health Fair… ... Continue Reading

Chattanoogan Sam Gooden dies at 87, co-founded The Impressions

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – A member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame died this week in Chattanooga. Sam Gooden was 87. Gooden formed the group The Impressions with brothers Richard and Arthur Brooks along with songwriter Curtis Mayfield and lead singer Jerry Butler. The group had hits in the 1950’s like “For Your Precious… ... Continue Reading

Balloon Glows event returns to East Ridge

EAST RIDGE, Tenn. (WDEF) — There were plenty of residents looking to catch a ride in a hot air balloon Friday night or just to watch those that were airborne with the sunset fading, but Mother Nature had other plans. Although Friday’s weather kept the fleet grounded, the event’s organizer is still optimistic for the… ... Continue Reading
Sheriff arrests 3 in Scottsboro tattoo shop on drug charges

Sheriff arrests 3 in Scottsboro tattoo shop on drug charges

SCOTTSBORO, Alabama (WDEF) – Sheriff’s officials say they found multiple drugs at a Scottsboro tattoo shop. Jackson County And Scottsboro officers searched the SkinWorks Tattoo shop on South Broad Street. They say they found methamphetamine, alprazolam, hydrocodone, suboxone, diazepam and marijuana plus drug paraphernalia. Officers arrested Ashley Wayne Kimbrell of Scottsboro, Stacey Michelle Stephens of… ... Continue Reading
Weather Update: Saturday’s Forecast – August 6, 2022

Weather Update: Saturday’s Forecast – August 6, 2022

WDEF TV:  A Few More Afternoon Storms For Your Weekend! Saturday: Partly sunny, hot, and humid with scattered PM showers and storms. Some storms could contain brief heavy rainfall leading to possible localized flash flooding. Highs around 90. Heat index: mid to high 90’s. Winds: Southerly @ 5 MPH.  Any leftover showers will diminish tonight,… ... Continue Reading
Weather Update: Friday Night’s Forecast – August 5, 2022

Weather Update: Friday Night’s Forecast – August 5, 2022

WDEF TV:  A Few More Afternoon Storms For Your Weekend! Tonight: Becoming partly, warm, and muggy.  Some patchy late fog with lows in the low 70s. Winds: Southerly at 5 MPH, then calm overnight. Saturday: Partly sunny, hot, and humid with scattered PM showers and storms. Some storms could contain brief heavy rainfall leading to… ... Continue Reading

County Commission Newcomers Talk Post-Election Priorities

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) — Beginning September first, the Hamilton County Commission will add two new seats to represent recently added districts 10 and 11.

Thursday’s election decided who will occupy seats, and a familiar face will be returning to represent District 11 — Joe Graham.

Several years ago, Graham represented District 6, and he laid out his priorities to News 12 after being voted back onto the commission.

“Safety, our schools, and infrastructure — there’s a lot of infrastructure needs, a lot of things that have been going on — and, importantly, continuing on with the path that we’re already on, trying to help further along projects that are already being done,” said Graham.

An expansion of the commission is something Graham pushed for during the redistricting process.

“I was very proud of this. Back during redistricting, I fought to get more people on there, because there was only nine commissioners and I fought to get us as many as I could, and so we ended up with eleven. So, I’m very excited that there’s eleven. I think it serves the community better,” Graham said.

In District 10, Jeff Eversole won a seat after running unopposed.

Eversole feels that people have lost faith in government, and hopes to restore confidence.

“I consider myself the new kid on the block, and my first goal is to be quite and listen, to not only what our constituents are saying in District 10, but also within the county, and also to my peers,” said Eversole.

Among Eversole’s other goals is to put an increased emphasis on education.

Categories: Featured, Hamilton County, Local News
... Continue Reading

Man charged with murder in Sand Mountain stabbing

FLAT ROCK, Alabama (WDEF) – Jackson County deputies have charged a Sand Mountain man after a fatal stabbing before dawn. It happened outside a home on County road 197 in Flat Rock around 4 AM. Officers arrived to find that 21 year old Damian Blaze Wade was dead from a stab wound. 40 year old… ... Continue Reading

Police Lunch break leads to discovery of debit card stamping machine

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Lunch break turned into a lucky break for a pair of Chattanooga Police investigators this week. The two Auto Crimes Unit investigators noticed two stolen vehicles they had been stolen out of East Ridge while they were eating lunch near 1000 Moss Drive. The Land Rover and BMW were parked on the… ... Continue Reading

Warrant leads to drugs and guns in Chatsworth

CHATSWORTH, Georgia (WDEF) – The Murray County Sheriff’s Office says a search warrant led them to a haul of drugs and guns. With plenty of backup, they served it at a home on Greenway Road on Wednesday. They seized 278 pressed, suspected Fentanyl pills, meth, THC oil and other drug related objects. They say they… ... Continue Reading

Historic night for Coty & Weston Wamp offers reminder of their father’s legacy of service

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Election night was historic here in Hamilton County.

The youngest county mayor in Tennessee.

The first female, and second-youngest District Attorney in Hamilton County.

And they happen to be brother and sister.

The Wamps had a banner night, calling themselves “The New Generation of Leadership.”

After winning their elections, Coty and Weston Wamp established themselves as the mantra they displayed publicly.

Coty referenced a banner displaying the mantra mentioned earlier. “This sign, for a good reason, says that this is a “New Generation of Leadership. You have a 33-year-old District Attorney General-elect, and I’m proud to be it. But even more proud to introduce you to your next County Mayor, Weston Wamp.”

With that, brother and sister, Weston and Coty Wamp are set to sit in two of the highest seats in Hamilton County.

They both share their last name, but the name Wamp leaves an imprint of the legacy their father, Zach, left from sitting in U.S. Congress for just short of two decades.

While each appreciates what Dad did, they also know he made sure they paved their own way toward having Friday’s historic Election Night.

Coty: “My dad never did any of that for me. He’s played a ‘Dad’ role as most dads do, but I’ve already separated myself, and I will never shy away from the fact that Zach Wamp is my dad. But I’ve also proven that I’m very much my own person.”

Weston: “My dad’s name … reminds people of a bygone era. You know, bipartisan cooperation of respect and decency. And we’ve lost a lot of that.”

The Wamps also say each is a little different from the other. They won’t always see eye-to-eye.

Coty: “So, I’ll support him. Maybe sometimes I won’t agree with him. I don’t know. We don’t always agree as brother and sister, even. But, whatever roles we do play together, I’m excited. I think it is going to be a good partnership at times.”

Weston: “I’m sure mine and Coty’s relationship will be scrutinized in the years to come and we welcome the scrutiny.”

Ultimately, it’s about what happens in the time one serves. Weston says his four years in office will be much different than what you’ve seen recently from others in the county mayoral office.

Weston: “I may be the youngest county mayor ever, but I’m going to be a lot lower drama than these guys are.”

Coty Wamp plans to make some changes to the D.A.’s office. One of which is to start a type of Special Victims Unit.

Weston focused on education and trade schools for much of the campaign, but his first order of business might just be getting out the budget for 2023.

Neither can do any of that until they officially take over on September 1st.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Government & Politics, Hamilton County, Local News
... Continue Reading

Road worker hit by vehicle overnight in construction zone

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – A road construction worker was hit by a vehicle overnight on I 75.

It happened in the construction zone between Volkswagen and Ooltewah around 3 AM.

Chattanooga Police say a vehicle went into the closed lanes and hit the worker, then lost control and left the roadway.

Both the worker and the driver were taken to the hospital, but were later released.

Investigators say charges are pending against the 24 year old driver.

Categories: Local News
... Continue Reading
Humane Educational Society gives update on nationwide Beagle rescue

Humane Educational Society gives update on nationwide Beagle rescue

The U.S. Department of Justice ordered the removal of about 4,000 beagles from Envigo, a breeding facility that supplies laboratories with their animal subjects for pharmaceutical research and testing.

A USDA inspection reported the facility performed unnecessarily painful medical procedures on dogs and puppies.

Other inhumane actions and hazards found by the USDA included: “A 3weekold male puppy was found in the pan below cageYoung puppies who fall into trays below their cage may become distressed, cold, hungry, dehydrated, or contaminated with feces and urine.”

The dogs also had limited access to food and water, however food was shown to the dogs.

Metal automatic food dispensers (self-feeders) which were normally mounted on the doors of each cage were turned around and left on the doors of the
cage, so that the dogs could see and smell the food but could not eat it. Many of these self-feeders did not have lids, so the dog food was visible through the uncovered top of the feeders.”

Our local humane education society has accepted twenty-one of these rescued beagles.

Chasity Garrett with the Humane Educational Society said because of their background these dogs will require extra attention and patients.

“So, what you’re going to need to do is introduce them to new situations. The dogs have probably never been on a sofa, some of them may have never been in the grass before. I know, one of them went to a foster home and didn’t know what stairs were. So, they’re gonna have to teach them all these things that you take for granted that dogs know,” said Garrett. “So, anytime you’re introducing something that they don’t know or don’t understand, you’d want to pair that with that positive reinforcement so that the dog learns that it’s a good thing and that people are good things. Another thing is they’re not going to be housebroken. Most of them are probably not going to be housebroken. They might get lucky. I mean, the Beagles are really smart.”

All twenty-one Beagles are still up for grabs. There are nine puppies, nine adult females, and two adult males. If you are interested in adoption please fill out the form on the HES website.

To give you can text H E S to 89871.

Categories: Featured, Local News
... Continue Reading

Woman who crashed into pole may have had medical emergency

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Police investigators say a woman who crashed this afternoon may have suffered a medical event. The wreck happened at 4515 Brainerd Road around 1 PM. Police say the 56 year old woman hit a pole. She was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Witnesses told investigators that the woman was driving… ... Continue Reading
Neighbors honored for saving family from kitchen fire

Neighbors honored for saving family from kitchen fire

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – The Chattanooga Fire Department honored the neighbors that came to the rescue of a father and daughter yesterday in East Brainerd. The family was trapped on the second story by a kitchen fire. Fernando Rivera and Sam Triplett helped everyone get out okay. Rivera coaxed the daughter to jump out of a… ... Continue Reading
Wamps, Graham, Mott and Judge Webb highlight local election stories

Wamps, Graham, Mott and Judge Webb highlight local election stories

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – On a night with many political suspicions confirmed by the voters of Hamilton County, we did see one upset and one amazing close race.

But the big story is the Wamp family in Hamilton County politics.

Both the son and daughter of former Congressman Zach Wamp will now lead important branches of local government.

And both did it convincingly.

Republican Weston Wamp defeated Democrat Matt Adams.

Weston Total

History shows that once you win this job, you keep it for awhile. His predecessors had long reigns.

Jim Coppinger 2011-2022

Claude Ramsey 1995-2011

The mayor (formerly County Executive) is the top financial officer of Hamilton County.

Coty Wamp

Republican Coty Wamp defeated John Allen Brooks by a similar margin. (She did get more votes than her brother for the Thanksgiving dinner bragging rights).

She is Hamilton County’s first female District Attorney.

Coty Numbers

After the results came in, Wamp talked about working with her brother in government, and why it probably won’t be as complicated as many people think.


The upset of election day was for Hamilton County Sessions Court Judge.

Larry Ables unseated Judge Gerald Webb Jr.

Judge Webb Results

The closest race from Thursday in the new district created for the Hamilton County Commission

Republican Joe Graham won the race over Democrat Montrell Besley by just 30 votes.

Graham Numbers

And finally, local activist Marie Mott won herself a seat at Chattanooga’s City Council.

She will finish out the term of Anthony Byrd.

Mott defeated the interim Council member, Marvene Noel.

Marie Mott Numbers


Categories: Chattanooga, Elections, Featured, Government & Politics, Hamilton County, Local News
... Continue Reading

Hamilton Co. School Board incumbents return, adds new district seats

HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WDEF) — Incumbent school board members Joe Smith and Karitsa Mosley Jones of Districts 3 and 5 won handsomely over their opponents Thursday night and to keep their seats on the Hamilton County School Board.

Democratic candidate Ben Connor of District 6 also won handily over Republican Jon Baker and will take over the seat previously held by Chattanooga City Councilwoman Jenny Hill, who did not seek re-election.

However, not all elections have such wide gaps — including the race for new School District 11.

In a close first-ever race for the school board seat, Democratic candidate Jill Black won with 2,167 total votes.

Republican Virginia Anne Manson fell just short, losing to Black by less than 300 votes.

Prior to her victory Thursday night, Black said, “It would be absolutely amazing to represent such a diverse district — that’s why I ran. After I saw them draw this district, I felt the need to step up and run. I felt called the run because of my work in the community. I’ve been a social worker in the community for 17 years.”

School Board District 10 also held its inaugural vote Thursday, which resulted in Republican Faye Robinson defeating her opponents with 2,483 total votes.

Unlike Black, Johnson won handily, gaining more than 1,500 votes over Democratic candidate Jeff P. Crim.

Following Thursday night’s elections, the new Hamilton County School Board stands as follows —

District 1: Republican Rhonda Thurman

District 2: Independent Marco Perez

District 3: Republican Joe Smith

District 4: Independent Tiffanie Robinson

District 5: Democrat Karitsa Mosley Jones

District 6: Democrat Ben Connor

District 7: Republican Joe Wingate

District 8: Republican Larry Grohn

District 9: Republican Gary Kuehn

District 10: Republican Faye Robinson

District 11: Democrat Jill Black

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News
... Continue Reading


There is no custom code to display.