News

Gift to Cooper

Blood drive for 4-year old facing chemo

Cooper Stansbury, 4, is surrounded by birthday cards made for him during a blood drive in his honor Friday, Jan. 10, which he was unable to attend because he was undergoing his fourth chemotherapy treatment for Neuroblastoma. (
Cooper Stansbury of Farragut was unable to attend the birthday party held in his honor Friday, Jan. 10, but more than 100 friends, family members and even strangers made sure it would be a day he and his family will never forget.

While Cooper, 4, was at East Tennessee Children’s Hospital beginning his fourth round of chemotherapy for neuroblastoma (which had been diagnosed in November), a replacement blood drive was held at Shoreline Church, where his family attends.

“We just asked for his birthday that people donate,” explained his mother, Lauren Stansbury, who said she worked with MEDIC on the details.

“For every donation, a $15 credit goes toward Cooper’s account to help with blood transfusions. Eleven people donating equals the cost of one transfusion.”

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Rash of Town vehicle thefts, burglaries continue: Hall

Car burglaries and thefts have been reported in Waterford subdivision, off Concord Road, during the holidays, while others, including Village Green and Fox Den, have since been targeted.
Car break-ins continue to plague Farragut neighborhoods, as Capt. Brad Hall of Knox County Sheriff’s Office West Precinct reiterated during last weeks’ Farragut Board of Mayor and Alderman meeting.

“There has been a rash of car burglaries and car thefts recently,” Hall told the Board Thursday, Jan. 9. “Most of the dates I looked at were between Christmas day and (Dec.) 29th,” when break-ins were reported in Waterford and on Farr Drive (in Thornton Heights) behind Sam and Andy’s.

“Nine cars were broken into, and a couple of cars were stolen,” Hall added. “The main thing is that the cars were unlocked, and in several of those cars were handguns that were stolen.

“Please lock your cars. Don’t leave anything of value in them. Get the word out to friends, family and coworkers — don’t leave anything in sight.

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1st-degree murder is charged

A Boyd Station Road mother was charged with first-degree murder following the apparent drowning death of her 11-month-old son last week, two days after he was found unresponsive in a bathtub.

Lindsee Louise Leonardo, 32, 12916 Boyd Station Road, was already jailed on charges of felony aggravated child abuse/neglect/endangerment when charges were upgraded to murder Friday, Jan. 10, one day after the infant died, according to Knox County Sheriff’s Office reports.

According to an arrest warrant, Leonardo told police she put her children, 11-month-old Aiden Xavier Leonardo, and a 23-month-old unnamed child, in the bathtub with 4-to-6 inches of water before going outside to smoke a cigarette at around 8 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 8.

The warrant further stated Leonardo told authorities she was outside for about 10 minutes. When she returned, the 23-month-old had turned the water on, filling the tub to the top. She said the 11-month old was floating on his back while the 23-month-old stood in the tub.

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Hoteliers can’t stop 4-1 vote

Despite several impassioned pleas from local hoteliers and a former Farragut alderman, the Town’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted 4-1 on first reading to approve a 3 percent hotel/motel occupancy tax during its regular meeting Jan. 9.

It was the third time since 2013 the issue had come before the Board on first reading, and Thursday’s vote followed several months of internal and external discussion, information gathering and planning. If approved on its scheduled second reading Thursday, Jan 23, the tax will become effective March 1, with all funding raised specifically earmarked for Town tourism development.

Three hoteliers opposed the tax, but one spoke in support.

Darren Tallent, general manager for Hampton Inn & Suites, said, “We as hoteliers continue to be a bit disappointed, because we have yet to see a clear mission or plan to developed to put ‘heads in beds.’

Tallent also noted the recent “largest hotel growth in Knoxville since 2012.

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Markli targeted by BOMA over anti-tax letter in fp

Editor’s Note: farragutpress apologizes to Bob Markli for the misunderstanding concerning thoughts he submitted about the proposed Hotel-Motel Occupancy Tax, which he said was not intended to be published. Those thoughts became a Letter to the Editor in our Jan. 16 issue.

Prior to the publication, however, Markli and editor Alan Sloan did discuss the possibility of him submitting a letter. But greater care should have been taken by the editor to assure the document was to be published.

This statement reflects neither opposition nor support by farragutpress for the tax in question.



Former Farragut Alderman Bob Markli was taken to task Thursday, Jan. 9, regarding remarks he had made in a farragutpress Letter to the Editor published as part of the paper’s Thursday, Jan. 9, issue.

Markli, who has long expressed opposition to the proposed Hotel/Motel Occupancy Tax the Board of Mayor and Aldermen considered and voted on during the meeting (see story beginnging on page 1A), had written a letter not only opposing the tax, but also questioning BOMA’s motives.

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KCSO police reports

• At 8:37 a.m., Friday, Jan. 10, a complainant called Knox County Sheriff’s Office Teleserve Unit to report a burglary to his vehicle at an Augusta National Way address.

Complainant advised an unknown suspect stole items from his 2007 Lexus ES 350 sometime between 5 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 8, and 7:30 a.m., Thursday, Jan. 9. Complainant advised the vehicle was unlocked and no damage was made to the vehicle.

Stolen was various wrestling equipment, with a listed value at $350, and a backpack, with a listed value of $80.

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