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  • Read the latest StormTrack 5 Forecast

    Published On: Feb 27 2013 06:28:32 PM EST
    Updated On: Jan 27 2015 05:17:26 PM EST
    StormTrack 5 Team

    CLEARING AND COLD TONIGHT

    WIND CHILLS TONIGHT FALL TO NEAR ZERO ACROSS THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS

    SUNSHINE RETURNS FOR WEDNESDAY

    Tonight: Becoming partly cloudy, cold and breezy at times. Lows 13-20. Northwest wind 5-10 mph

    Wednesday: Abundant sunshine. Still chilly. Highs 35-40. Light wind.

    Wednesday Night: Clouds increasing late, seasonably cold. Lows 20-25. Light wind.

    Thursday: Increasing clouds. A 40% chance of light rain during the afternoon. Highs 45-50.

    Weather Summary:

    We are tracking a very strong storm system that originated in Alberta, Canada. This 'clipper' as it's called provided us with a few snow showers and has strengthened as it's moved off the east coast. Winter Storm Warnings and Blizzard Warnings are in effect for New England tonight.

    Winds from the northwest will be gusty through the overnight hours over the mountains, making for some brisk conditions.  Clearing and cold conditions are expected with lows dropping into the teens to lower 20s. 

    Be alert across the higher terrain to the dangers of low wind chills.  The "feels like" temperatures could be near zero at times.

    StormTrack 5 meteorologists are tracking a quiet weather pattern for Wednesday. Clouds will gradually start to thin out tonight. As high pressure moves in from the west, it will take control of our weather Wednesday, leaving us with mostly sunny skies. However, it will still be quite chilly with high temperatures in the mid 30s to near 40 degrees.

    As high pressure ventures off to the east, it will begin to bring in some milder air from the south, ahead of the next storm system. Thursday will be in the mid to upper 40s, but temperatures drop as we end the week. A weak cold front will swing through Thursday afternoon into Friday morning. Light rain will be possible with this front Thursday afternoon and evening.  As colder air moves in behind the cold front, any rain showers will likely transition into snow showers or flurries before ending Friday morning. Accumulations, if any, should be light.  Friday will bring with it a fairly significant temperature drop. Highs will only top out in the 30s.

    Cool air will linger around into the Super Bowl weekend. Saturday will be dry with partly cloudy skies overhead, and temperatures will be in the 40s. We will begin tracking another storm developing over the southwestern United States.  This storm will likely bring a good chance of rain Sunday into Sunday evening.  The precipitation may start out as a mix of rain and snow.  Colder air will pour into the Tri-Cities Sunday night into Monday.  This will likely change the rain to snow showers and flurries overnight into Monday.  A blast of cold air will follow in the wake of the passing weather system providing below normal temperatures through the middle of next week.

    You can always get the latest forecast and weather information on News 5 WCYB, wcyb.com and on the StormTrack 5 weather app.

    Our normal high is 46°, low 25°.

    Meteorologist Dave Dierks

  • Portion of Highway 107 closed following deadly crash

    Published On: Jan 27 2015 06:15:26 AM EST
    Updated On: Jan 27 2015 11:11:47 AM EST
    GREENE COUNTY, Tenn. -

    UPDATE 11:05 a.m.: One person is dead and a suspect hurt after a police chase this morning in Greene County.

    The Tennessee Highway Patrol says a Greene County sheriff's deputy was chasing a car driven by 22-year-old Jason Mistele of Greeneville.

    Investigators say his vehicle ran off the side of the road and flipped over. His passenger, 21-year-old Daniel T. Gross, was thrown out of the car and died.

    The Tennessee Highway Patrol is now handling the investigation. There is no word on why deputies were pursuing the car.

    ------------------------

    A deadly crash caused part of a highway in Greene County to close overnight.

    The Tennessee Highway Patrol tells News Five the crash happened around 10:30 Monday night on Highway 107.

    Troopers tell us one person died in that crash.

    Both the north and southbound lanes of Highway 107 were closed while crews worked to clean up the scene.

    The highway reopened just before 5:30 Tuesday morning. We’ll continue to update you with new information on air and online as we receive it.

  • Craigslist disappearance: Bodies recovered

    Published On: Jan 26 2015 02:52:22 AM EST
    Updated On: Jan 26 2015 09:39:00 PM EST
    Bud and June Runion

    Runion Family/WGCL

    ATLANTA (CNN) -

    Two bodies, one male and one female, were recovered Monday in the case of a Marietta, Georgia, couple, who went missing after contacting a car seller on Craigslist.

    The bodies have not yet been identified, said Telfair County Sheriff Chris Steverson. He said the couple's car was also found submerged in a nearby lake.

    "It's not the outcome we had hoped for but, obviously, it's the one we have to deal with," Steverson said. "We'll analyze the vehicle, the bodies and hopefully we can come to some conclusion as to how they met their fate."

    Earlier Monday, the suspect sought in the case who had posted a Craigslist ad turned himself in, the Telfair County Sheriff's Office said on its Facebook page.

    Authorities have said that Ronnie "Jay" Adrian Towns, 28, was wanted on charges of giving false statements and criminal attempt to commit theft by deception. His family was integral in securing his surrender, Steverson said.

    'Deceptive' communication

    Elrey "Bud" Runion, 69, and his wife, June, 66, placed an ad looking for a 1966 Mustang on the advertisements website and contacted a car seller on Craigslist.

    They drove to the South Georgia town of McRae from Marietta, an Atlanta suburb, on Thursday to meet someone who responded to the ad, relatives said.

    No one has heard from them since.

    "He was excited about the car. He had one when he got back from Vietnam," daughter Stephanie Bishop told CNN affiliate WSB-TV in Atlanta.

    Asked whether Towns owned a Mustang like the one the Runions were looking for, Steverson replied, "He does not. We feel that the entire communication he had with Mr. Runion was deceptive."

    Relatives filed a missing persons report after the couple failed to show up to baby-sit their grandchildren the next day.

    'Last known communications'

    Towns, 28, had the "last known communications" with Runion, Steverson said.

    Towns turned himself in just before noon Monday. He "is currently in custody and no further details are available at this time. Details will be posted as they become available," the Facebook page for the Sheriff's Office said.

    It was unclear when his bond hearing would be held, Steverson said.

    The couple made the trip to look at the car, and once Runion got to Telfair County, the suspect communicated with him, according to the sheriff. He did not say who called whom. McRae is about 180 miles from Marietta.

    "Early on in the investigation we did contact Mr. Towns, and we did interview him and by the information he provided we found it to be false and deceptive," the sheriff said shortly before Towns turned himself in. "After we interviewed him, our efforts to contact him were unsuccessful. Today we've contacted his family, and they've been helpful in locating him."

    'They are selfless'

    For days, authorities searched for the couple using helicopters and watercraft, Steverson said.

    Deputies contacted land owners and hunters familiar with the area in case they had seen anything suspicious.

    The FBI and Georgia Bureau of Investigation assisted with the search.

    "I am eternally grateful for the prayers that have been lifted up, the encouraging words, complete strangers who have reached out, we are so thankful for that," said Josh Patterson, the couple's son-in-law.

    "Bud is a veteran. He and June are great people; they give so much, they are selfless."

    The Runions were last seen driving a champagne 2003 GMC Envoy, which is the vehicle authorities have since recovered.

    Site has history

    Though the overwhelming majority of Craigslist transactions occur without incident, the site has a history of being co-opted by criminals.

    Just in recent years, there have been numerous such instances. In Henderson, Nevada, police said a man placing an ad in July met three men at a park, who took him to a vacant house, tied him up, beat and robbed him, then escaped in his car.

    In March, a San Jose, California, woman responding to an ad for a cellular phone was allegedly kidnapped at gunpoint by two men who drove her to an ATM and demanded her passcode, police told a newspaper.

    In May 2013, a Maine teenager drove to Portland to sell his BMW sedan to a 29-year-old who had responded to his Craigslist ad. The teen was allegedly forced into his own trunk and driven to Delaware, according to media reports and an FBI affidavit.

  • Fake robbery video wastes time of Kingsport police

    Published On: Jan 27 2015 11:53:59 AM EST
    Updated On: Jan 27 2015 05:56:40 PM EST

    The Kingsport Police Department says a local business owner could face charges after the store produced a video pretending it was surveillance of a robbery.

    KINGSPORT, Tenn. -

    An attempt to gain internet fame could end with criminal charges.

    The Kingsport Police Department says a local business, Tennessee Sounds, produced a video pretending it was surveillance of an armed robbery.

    The video depicted a masked, knife-wielding suspect attempting an armed robbery, with the owner of the store foiling the robbery by pointing a large handgun at the suspect, who then appeared to faint.

    The owner, Victor Jenkins, says an employee thought the video would be a great viral marketing tactic. He told News 5 the robber was played by a friend of that employee.

    But now that law enforcement is involved, it's a mistake Jenkings would love to take back. "It has probably hurt me more than it's ever done for somebody else," he says.

    After seeing the video, Kingsport investigators contacted Jenkins. He initially said the robbery happened, but was not reported to police because nothing was stolen.

    Tom Patton, public information officer at the Kingsport Police Department, says, "He said a person really did come into our store with a knife, I really did pull out a gun." But Patton says Jenkins backtracked a bit later. "When he made those false statements to police, he in effect committed a Class D felony of false reporting."

    In Tennessee, it is illegal to make a statement to a legitimate inquiry b a law enforcement officer knowing the report or statement is false. Jenkins has since apologized to police, but it's too late. "I had already told that one lie, you know, one lie comes back to slap you in the mouth," Jenkins says.

    Because officers already wasted valuable time. "Several man hours were wasted investigating a crime that never happened. It was on a Saturday afternoon, some of these officers were on their off day and got involved and it was just really senseless," Patton says.

    Now, Jenkins calls the entire ordeal a lesson learned. "Once it's done, there's nothing you can do about it. You are known for that one lie," Jenkins says,

    Patton says the possibility of charges exist, but he doesn't anticipate any will be filed. He said there is discretion when filing charges, and while the business's motives were selfish, police don't believe the owner was deliberately trying to cause harm.

  • Fire causes $1 million in damages at Bluff City boating retailer

    Published On: Jan 25 2015 09:26:09 PM EST
    Updated On: Jan 26 2015 03:25:01 PM EST

    A fire caused at least $1 million in damages Sunday night at a Bluff City boating retailer.

    BLUFF CITY, Tenn. -

    A fire caused major damage Sunday night at a Bluff City boating retailer.

    Rex Pendergrass, the manager of Watson's Marine, says the building is a total loss. The Sullivan County Volunteer Fire Department says the fire started on the left side of the roof around 6 p.m. Sunday night.

    Inside the building was seven boats and tons of fishing gear that is now destroyed. "The boats will be the easy part of, you know, as far as putting the value on it - but it's a tremendous loss. It'll be an excess of a million dollars I'm sure," Pendergrass says.

    The boats are valued upwards of $50,000, and all that is left is melted fishing rods. Pendergrass says the fire comes at a terrible time. "We're heading into the onset of our season, so we were heavily stocked," he says. "Our annual open house is literally just a week and a half away."

    Owner Aaron Greene was at the store preparing for the open house when the fire started. His father Mike told News 5 that Aaron grabbed a fire extinguisher after seeing smoke, but it was too late. "It started back in his break room. I don't know, something shorted out and started the fire, then it went back through the ceiling and smoked everything up," Mike Greene says.

    Now, it's time to rebuild. "We'll be back. It's just a tough time, but we'll get over it and we'll be back," Pendergrass says.

    That will take finding a new property and restocking -- being grateful no one was hurt in the fire. "Buildings and boats can be replaced, you know. People can't," Pendergrass says.

    He says the service department was unharmed, so the business should be up and running in about two days. He asks customers to be patient during this time, and thanks the community for being so supportive.

    Sullivan County Fire Investigators will be at Watson's Marine Tuesday to determine the exact cause of the flames.

  • Eastman insurance plan leaves out local pharmacies

    Published On: Jan 26 2015 06:42:43 PM EST

    One of Tri-Cities’ biggest employers made a change this year that could affect area business.

    KINGSPORT, Tenn. -

    One of Tri-Cities’ biggest employers made a change this year that could affect area business. Eastman Chemical Company's insurance now only covers medications purchased through CVS.

    Mac's Medicine Mart has been in Kingsport for more than two decades, but over the last month one of the owners says they've lost 100 customers to CVS. Owner and pharmacist Barry Walton blames a change in in Eastman Chemical's insurance policy. "That takes away patients that we've taken care of you know 10, 20, 25 years," he said.

    6,500 of Eastman's employees are based in this region; under Eastman's insurance plan they can no longer get their prescriptions fully covered at pharmacies other than CVS. 

    Moore's Pharmacy owner Gina Pinney says the change not only affects employees, but their families as well. “We've lost over a third of our business from our customers," she said.

    Eastman vice president of compensation and benefits Steven Gebben released a statement indicating the change was necessary now that Eastman,  "has become a global company and therefore a global employer.”

    Gebben maintains that in spite of Eastman's policy change, "It remains steadfastly committed to Kingsport and has publicly committed to invest $1.6 billion in Kingsport over the next 10 years."

    But Walton says the city was built on businesses like his. “It's really hurting the small businesses that have really helped make Kingsport Kinsgport,” he said.

    The CVS-Caremark program does not apply to Eastman's approximately 7,000 MediCare-eligible retirees and spouses in our area.

  • Teenager charged with slashing hundreds of tires

    Published On: Jan 27 2015 01:07:00 PM EST
    Updated On: Jan 27 2015 01:26:08 PM EST
    WASHINGTON COUNTY, Tenn. -

    Investigators say a 17-year-old was responsible for slashing hundreds of tires on a Gray, Tennessee car lot on Thanksgiving Day.

    Sheriff's department investigators said the tires on 53 vehicles at Unique Auto Brokers were slashed in the early morning hours of Thanksgiving Day.

    The 17-year-old is charged with felony vandalism over $10,000. The same teen is also charged with 10 additional counts of vandalism after a similar incident where multiple vehicles tires were slashed in the Cedar Valley community in Gray on December 7.

    19-year-old Makayla Blake Bennett and 20-year-old Cassidy Hoke-Johnson are both charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

  • Family hopes for more information in missing persons case

    Published On: Jan 27 2015 05:27:32 PM EST
    Updated On: Jan 27 2015 05:35:26 PM EST

    The family of a missing Sullivan County woman continues to look for leads, hoping to help find Amber Terrell and her boyfriend Art Gibson, who have been missing for almost three weeks.

    SULLIVAN COUNTY, Tenn. -

    The family of a missing Sullivan County woman continues to look for leads, hoping to help find Amber Terrell and her boyfriend Art Gibson, who have been missing for almost three weeks. There is now a reward in the case for any leads to help find the missing couple.

    The two went missing on January 7 after visiting family in Carter County. They had plans to go to dinner in Johnson City and return, but they never came back. The family now just wants to know where they are.

    "You wouldn't think something like this, you see missing people all the time, you just don't think about it until it's one of your own that's missing," Terrell's sister, Ashley Greene, said.

    Now, the unthinkable, when Greene's own sister went missing three weeks ago.

    "It hurts. We don't get rest. We don't eat good now. We miss her," Terrell's mother, Sandy, said, holding back tears.

    Terrell's family is relying on the Sullivan County Sheriff's Department to help them find answers to her disappearance. There are many unanswered questions in the case, but only one goal.

    "At this point, our priority is locating the couple," Sullivan County Public Information Officer Leslie Earhart said.

    The couple's car was discovered in Carter County after visiting family, but that's not the only red flag for investigators.

    "From what we understand, it's very unusual for them not to be in touch for their family. So at this point, we're extremely concerned," Earhart said.

    "She lived with us. If she did go somewhere, she would call everyday or she would come by everyday. We were very close," Sandy Terrell said.

    As the sheriff's department continues to follow up on leads, Terrell's family wants one message to ring loud and clear -- "I just miss you, Amber, and I want you home. Me and your daddy is really worried. Just come home."

    If you have any information in this case, you can contact the Sullivan County Sheriff's Department. You can even send in those tips anonymously on their website here: https://www.tipsubmit.com/webtips.aspx?AgencyID=1068

    There is now a reward in this case for any information that leads to finding the couple.

  • Eastman insurance plan leaves out local pharmacies

    One of Tri-Cities’ biggest employers made a change this year that could affect area business.

  • Ethan Thomas talks commitment to Eastern Kentucky

    Elizabethton RB Ethan Thomas tells us why he committed to Eastern Kentucky.

  • Monday's Mid-Day StormTrack 5 Forecast

    While a significant storm system is expected to pack a punch in the northeast, meteorologist Donnie Cox explains what it means for our region in his StormTrack 5 forecast.

  • Live interview: Mike Huckabee

    Callan Gray got a few minutes to chat with politician Mike Huckabee in his book tour stop in the Tri-Cities on January 26.

  • Tonight's StormTrack5 forecast, January 26, 2015

    Chief Meteorologist Dave Dierks with your StormTrack 5 forecast

  • Tuesday Morning's StormTrack 5 Forecast: 01-27-15

    Blizzard conditions across the northeast, while a few light snow showers cross through the area.  Meteorologist Donnie Cox is out in Sam's Gap this morning with a look at our week ahead in weather.

  • Tuesday's Mid-Day StormTrack 5 Forecast: 01-27-15

    Meteorologist Donnie Cox gets you caught up to speed on the cold day ahead, along with wind chills that will fall near zero for some overnight.  All that and more in his StormTrack 5 forecast.

  • Fire causes $1 million in damages at Bluff City boating retailer

    A fire caused at least $1 million in damages Sunday night at a Bluff City boating retailer.