Ben Benton (Reporter, Photographer)

Phone: 423-757-6569
Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee, North Georgia and Northeast Alabama. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties. Ben was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. He has a bachelor's degree in communications from the the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. In 2014, he placed third in the Green Eyeshade Awards for Disaster Coverage- All Dailies for his story on the South Pittsburg flood, and third place in the Specialized Site category for the newspaper's Civil War 150th anniversary online special section. Ben previously worked at The Daily Post-Athenian in Athens, Tenn., The Herald-News, in Dayton, Tenn., and at the Knoxville Journal, in Knoxville, Tenn. Ben, a lifelong UT fan, lives in Chattanooga with his wife, Lisa, and has been a Chattanooga resident since 1988. Ben has one son, Benjy, who works in town as a web developer. When he's not working, Ben likes to cook and hit the backroads in search of barbecue and the region's natural beauty. Contact Ben at or or or 423-757-6569.

Former Decherd water and sewer head and local businessman defrauded city for more than $200,000

Published Sep. 18 2017

A former Decherd, Tenn., water and sewer superintendent and a local business owner worked together to defraud the city of...

Opponents of controversial Polk County, Tenn., timbering site stymied by federal response

Published Sep. 18 2017

A Cherokee National Forest supervisor has said federal officials will not consider objections to a controversial timbering project in Polk...

Rabid deer case confirmed in Cherokee County, N.C.

Published Sep. 17 2017

North Carolina wildlife officials have confirmed a rare case of rabies in a dead white-tailed deer in Cherokee County, which...


Medical examiner rules Etowah teen's death a homicide

Published Sep. 15 2017

The state medical examiner has ruled the death of an Etowah, Tenn., teen found dead on July 4 as a...

TBI has yet to release any new information in Etowah teen's July death

Published Sep. 13 2017

TBI officials on Monday remained tight-lipped about the death of an 18-year-old Etowah, Tenn., woman whose body was found on...

Sewanee Organize and Act group to meet Sept. 17

Published Sep. 12 2017

The multi-county community group, Sewanee Organize and Act, will meet Sept. 17 to discuss ongoing and fall projects.

UPDATE: TEMA status raised to Level 3- State of Emergency as Irma moves through Tennessee

Published Sep. 11 2017

The Tennessee Emergency Management Agency raised its alert status Monday to Level 3 - State of Emergency.

Victim in Saturday collision between car and train identified

Published Sep. 11 2017

Investigators have identified the victim in a fatal collision Saturday.

Jackson County, Ala., schools get $200,000 Google grant for state tech initiative

Published Sep. 10 2017

A $200,000 grant from the Google Inc. Charitable Giving Fund of the Tides Foundation will fund the Jackson County (Ala.)...

Tullahoma Fire Department improves ISO rating to 2

Published Sep. 8 2017

The fire department in the small Coffee County, Tenn., town of Tullahoma recently improved its ISO classification enough to place...

Franklin County, Tenn., man dies making Harvey repairs in Texas

Published Sep. 7 2017

A 22-year-old Franklin County, Tenn., lineman was killed Tuesday while repairing Hurricane Harvey damage near Victoria, Texas.

Birchwood man killed Monday after truck crashes into building west of Dayton

Published Sep. 6 2017

A 63-year-old Birchwood, Tenn., man was killed Monday.


Marker to be unveiled designating Hiwassee River as 'blueway'

Published Sep. 6 2017

A marker will be unveiled in the coming weeks in Charleston, Tenn., officially designating the Hiwassee River as the "Hiwassee...

Body found Sunday in Sylvania, Ala.

Published Sep. 5 2017

Authorities in DeKalb County, Ala., are investigating the discovery of a woman's body by a property owner who was mowing...

Cherokee County, N.C., man charged in sexual assault

Published Sep. 5 2017

A 47-year-old Cherokee County, N.C., man was arrested by authorities in Murphy in connection with a sexual assault reported on...

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency honors two area employees

Published Aug. 28 2017

A Polk County, Tenn., wildlife officer has been named officer of the year in Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency's Region III,...

Four counties in Chattanooga region get energy grants for facility upgrades, improved efficiency

Published Aug. 21 2017

Four rural counties in the Chattanooga region will divvy up more than $500,000 in energy grant funding from the Tennessee...

Construction of new legs of Mountain Goat Trail in Tracy City on tap

Published Aug. 20 2017

Construction on one of the most anticipated legs of the ongoing Mountain Goat Trail in Grundy County will begin this...

Suspect in 2016 Marion County homicide arraigned Friday

Published Aug. 19 2017

Cody Waggoner was arraigned Friday in Marion County, Tenn., on a homicide charge in the 2016 death of Bradley Aaron...

Two charged in Cherokee County, N.C., drug investigation, fight with officers

Published Aug. 18 2017

A Northeast Georgia couple was arrested this week.