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Cookeville Man Faces Sex Offender Registry Charges

A Cookeville man faces three counts of violating the sex offender registry. Authorities charged 40-year-old Joe Allen Garrett for failure to disclose two unregistered email addresses. Garrett also possessed a Facebook account under Joseph Garrett. Officials booked Garrett into the Putnam County Jail on Friday with a $4,500 bond. Garrett has since posted bail. Garrett was placed onto the Tennessee ... Read More »

Fall Creek Falls Rededicates Nature Center During Grand Opening

Tennessee state officials gathered at Fall Creek Falls State Park Friday to rededicate the park’s nature center in honor of former First Lady Betty Dunn. Park Manager Jacob Young said despite multiple delays and additional funding needs, the Betty Dunn Nature Center has finally reopened. “[The project] ended up totaling about $1.2 million in upgrades that’s come to the Nature ... Read More »

79-year-old Killed After Being Struck By Car

A 79-year-old Sparta man died after being struck by a vehicle Friday morning. The Tennessee Highway Patrol identified the deceased as Russell G. Giampietro. The incident happened at 9:22 a.m. on West Bockman Way, near Citizens Bank and Hunter Funeral Home. A Tennessee Highway Patrol crash report said Giampietro was struck by a westbound Buick, driven by 82-year-old Norma Kirby ... Read More »

Dowelltown Man Facing Rape And Incest Charges

A preliminary hearing takes place next week for a Dowelltown man charged with raping his granddaughter. 66-year-old William Kenneth Phillips faces charges of rape and incest. DeKalb County Sheriff Patrick Ray said Phillips performed unlawful sexual penetration on his 13-year-old granddaughter. The incidents allegedly occurred multiple times between March and May 2018. Phillips has not yet posted his $150,000 bond ... Read More »

Cookeville Mayor Releases Statement on Playground Lawsuit

Cookeville City Council voted in a rare 3-2 decision Thursday to settle a playground lawsuit with property owners near Dogwood Park. Cookeville Mayor Ricky Shelton released a statement on the decision Friday morning after voting against the action. “For three years I’ve been clearly opposed to using any amount of the City of Cookeville’s money to settle this lawsuit,” Shelton ... Read More »

Pedestrian Fatally Struck By Vehicle In Sparta

A vehicle struck and killed a pedestrian in Sparta Friday morning. The Tennessee Highway Patrol confirmed the accident happened on West Bockman Way, near Hunter Funeral Home and Citizens Bank. Authorities have not released the name of the deceased. A full report will be provided by the THP at a later time. Read More »

Schools To Use Online Auction For Uffelman Facility

The Putnam County School System will take another shot at trying to sell the former Uffelman Elementary School. Superintendent Jerry Boyd said the school system rejected a single bid for the three-acre property last year. “The one single bid was lower than what we felt was the value of the property,” Boyd said. “We’ve had some other offers since then ... Read More »

Cookeville PD Arrests Eight In Human Trafficking Investigation

(Photo: Cookeville Police Department Facebook)

The Cookeville Police Department arrested eight individuals Thursday as part of a human trafficking investigation. CPD released a statement Friday saying undercover detectives and officers made the arrests after posing as patrons seeking to pay for sexual activity. The individuals arrested range in age from 20 years old to 59. No underage individuals were located in the investigation. Among those ... Read More »

Putnam School Board Approves First Budget Draft

The first budget draft for the Putnam County School System includes an $8.8 million gap between projected revenue and expenditures. Superintendent Jerry Boyd said the proposal aligns with the needs and vision of the school system. “So we’re going to continue to be realistic, and since realism to us is… what do we need to serve the children of Putnam ... Read More »

Sparta Board Appoints Interim City Administrator

The Sparta Board of Aldermen and Mayor appointed City Recorder Tonya Tindle as Interim City Administrator Thursday night. Mayor Jeff Young said Tindle will have multiple documents to sign before Sparta can hire a full-time administrator. “We do need to appoint, for administrative reasons, someone to on an interim basis to be the city administrator,” Young said. “I would like ... Read More »