WZTV FOX 17 - Top Stories
January 17, 2013
It is a problem that really stinks.
Homes across Middle Tennessee are being overrun with skunks, and the animals are causing some major damage.
Besides the obvious odor, skunks are destroying duct work, and insulation, and making nests inside crawl spaces.
Experts say it's as bad as they have ever seen it., and in January, the problem only gets worse.
"All along the walls there is a ton of fecal accumulation," says Ryan Hall.
Ryan Hall has been spending a lot of time under people's homes.
Skunks are finding their way into crawl spaces. The reason -- love is in the air.
"Right now it is skunk mating season," says Hall.
Hall, and his company Animal Pros, help remove the animals.
He has already trapped four skunks here.
They've left more than 200 pounds of feces, destroyed duct lines, and ruined the vapor barrier.
"This year especially, the skunks are in full force all over," says Hall.
Skunks often dig holes to get inside. They're looking for food, warmth, and shelter.
Skunks also love to get in through your crawl space vents. Experts say make sure there's a heavy duty screen over those areas.
Homeowner Bonnie Blaylock says the skunks have caused $15,000 worth of damage under her home. There's also that horrible smell.
"When they're sitting right underneath your house, and it just stays there, and stays there, and stays there, it's pretty hard to bear," says Bonnie Blaylock.
The Blaylocks have resorted to extreme measures just to get some sleep.
"I just took a little surgical mask and sprayed it with lavender, and that's how I slept with this on, and the covers up over my nose, because otherwise it's like cutting onions, your eyes are just running and it's really bad," says Blaylock.
Skunks may be looking for love, but they're leaving behind big problems.
"It doesn't matter where you're at, if you're in Middle Tennessee, skunks are going to be around," says Hall.
Ryan Hall says the skunks are especially bad in Antioch, Murfreesboro, and Brentwood.
Metro Animal Control is also getting a lot of calls.
This problem isn't going away. Skunks will start having their babies in February.
For news updates follow John Dunn on twitter @WZTVJohnDunn
Tuesday, January 22 2013, 05:56 PM CST
Man pleads guilty to Memphis officer's murder
May 21, 2013 22:22 GMT
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- A former death row inmate is set to be released from prison after he pleaded guilty to second-degree murder of a Memphis police officer.
Shelby County District Attorney Amy Weirich said Tuesday that she has accepted Timothy McKinney's guilty plea.
McKinney was convicted of first-degree murder for the fatal shooting of Officer Don Williams. The officer was killed outside a comedy club in December 1997.
McKinney appealed and won a new trial, which ended with a deadlocked jury. A third trial earlier this year also ended in a hung jury.
The Commercial Appeal reports that McKinney was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Since he's already served more than 15 years -- including 11 on death row -- McKinney will be released this week.
Williams' family opposed the settlement.
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