Tennessee Smokies Proposal to Relocate Stadium

Tennessee Smokies owner Randy Boyd proposed last month to relocate the baseball team by 2019.

In the proposal sent to Sevierville and Sevier County, Boyd suggested the Double-A baseball team could remain playing in Sevierville through the 2018 season.

Boyd, the state’s economic and community development commissioner, recently purchased approximately 7 acres in Knoxville’s Old City for $6 million, fueling speculation he might bring baseball back to Knoxville.

A July 19 email from Sevier County Economic Development Executive Director Allen Newton cited information from Boyd and said a stadium in Knoxville would cost in the “$50 to $60 million range.”

Newton’s comments and Boyd’s proposal were in emails obtained by the News Sentinel via a public records request. Knoxville officials and Boyd began discussions on moving the Smokies to downtown Knoxville from Sevierville as early as 2014, emails obtained in a separate public records request show.

In the emails, Newton said he was “shocked” that “Knoxville and Knox County would even make a proposal to Randy Boyd Sports,” knowing significant years remain on the Tennessee Smokies lease in Sevierville. The lease expires in 2025.

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Taboo Sex Offender Registry Brought to Attention

The Tennessee Sex Offender Registry is necessary but not something most think about very often, according to a few West Knoxville residents.

According to the TBI’s map offender search, there are 20 offenders within a two-mile radius of the Woodlands West apartment complex.

“I’ve never even looked at the registry. It’s not something I think about hardly ever. I think because I am a big man and don’t often feel victimized or feel like I should watch my back,” said Adam Eichelberger “So I am slightly surprised to learn about the offenders that live nearby.”

Eichelberger is a UT student who lives in West Knoxville at the Woodlands West apartment complex.

West Knoxville resident Connor McCallum, who also lives in the same complex as Eichelberger, was surprised by the number of offenders in a two-mile radius of his home.

“I think the registry is a good thing to have because if I was moving somewhere with my small children, I would want to know about the people living by us,” said McCallum.

Eichelberger thinks the registry is a good thing for the sake of transparency in the communities, but he also has a some reservations about it.

“I think it is a little unfair for the offenders maybe because they cannot escape their crimes even after they serve their time, but honestly, I don’t have any respect for sex offenders anyways,” said Eichelberger.

McCallum feels the registry is unfair to some people simply because of the type of offense they committed.

“It’s pretty awful that someone has to be registered as a sex offender for peeing outside  [indecent exposure] because then every time they move somewhere they have to go door-to-door explaining who they are and why,” said McCallum.

The offenses listed on the registry include:

  • Sexual battery
  • Statutory rape
  • Aggravated prostitution
  • Sexual exploitation of a minor
  • Indecent exposure upon a third or subsequent conviction
  • Spousal sexual battery

Both Eichelberger and McCallum have never looked at the list nor have they been notified of any offenders living near them at any point in their lives.

More information can be found about the law at:                  https://www.tn.gov/assets/entities/tbi/attachments/2014%20Sex%20Offender%20Law.pdf

More information about the registry and a list of offenders can be found at:                  https://www.tn.gov/tbi/topic/sex-offender-registry-search