published Thursday, September 4th, 2014

Man rescued from Walker cave and other news from areas around Chattanooga

  • photo
    A person pulls himself out of Pettyjohn's Cave in this file photo.

Man rescued from Walker cave

LaFAYETTE, Ga. — A man who was lost and unable to climb out of Pettyjohn's Cave in Walker County on Wednesday was rescued, Walker County Fire Chief Randy Camp said.

Three local residents had gone into the Pigeon Mountain cave around 6 p.m. Tuesday, Camp said. Upon reaching a wall about 7 or 8 feet high that they needed to climb, one of the men was too exhausted to do so, he said. Another member of the group climbed out and left the cave to call 911 at about 1:05 a.m.

Camp said the rescue took about four and a half hours, but that once the man was pulled over the wall he was able to walk the rest of the way out of the cave. No one was injured.

Rescue crews respond to about five rescue calls at Pettyjohn's Cave every year, Camp said.


Flooding possible through morning

DALTON, Ga. — Residents of saturated areas in North Georgia are bracing for more flooding, as 2 to 4 inches of rain is possible through this morning.

The National Weather Service on Wednesday issued a flash flood watch for a large part of North Georgia through 8 a.m. today. Forecasters said storms expected to develop over the region hold the potential for up to 4 inches of rain, with isolated higher amounts.

Several streets and buildings were flooded in the Dalton area after earlier storms.

Whitfield County emergency management officials said three streets in the Dalton area were still flooded shortly before 7:30 a.m. Wednesday following overnight storms.

The agency's deputy director, Jeff Ownby, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that firefighters rescued several motorists stranded in water.


Man says guilty in fatal van crash

SEYMOUR, Tenn. — An East Tennessee man has pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide, drug possession and other charges in a 2012 church van crash that killed two people and injured 11 others.

Public Defender Ed Miller told the Knoxville News Sentinel that 23-year-old Tyler James Schaeffer expressed remorse when he entered the plea Tuesday in front of Sevier County Circuit Court Judge Rex Ogle.

A grand jury indicted Schaeffer after his sport utility vehicle hit a Cedar Grove Baptist Church van in 2012 as it returned to Maryville from a youth trip to Gatlinburg on Sept. 16, 2012.

The crash killed 16-year-old Courteney Kaliszewski and the van driver, 45-year Jeffrey Trussell.

Police said Schaeffer was high on bath salts at the time of the crash. Schaeffer said he has no memory of what happened.


Sibling prison guards shot dead

MORVEN, Ga. — The Georgia Bureau of Investigation and police in South Georgia are probing the deaths of two Valdosta State Prison guards.

GBI Special Agent Steve Turner told the Valdosta Daily Times that Wilbur and Anisa Mobley were found dead from multiple gunshot wounds Wednesday morning behind a home they shared with their parents in Morven -- about 16 miles northwest of Valdosta.

Authorities said the two were siblings and may have been getting ready for work at the time of the shooting.

Turner said investigators are unsure of the shooter's motive, and anyone with information is asked to call local police.

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