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ORT: Trial set for woman accused of killing motorcyclist

A trial has been scheduled this month for an Oak Ridge woman charged with homicide after a fatal car-motorcycle crash on North Illinois Avenue in January 2016.

Our partners at Oak Ridge Today report that the jury trial for 41-year-old Noelle Leigh Patty has been scheduled for Tuesday, July 24, in Anderson County Criminal Court in Clinton.

Patty was charged with homicide in the death of 44-year-old motorcyclist Rufus E. Shephard III of Oak Ridge on January 31st, 2016.

On Friday, Anderson County Criminal Court Judge Don Elledge rejected a motion to dismiss two of the five charges filed against Patty: criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment when a deadly weapon is involved.

Patty was indicted on the five charges by the Anderson County Grand Jury in August of 2017.

In addition to homicide and reckless endangerment, the charges included failure to yield the right-of-way resulting in death, failure to obey a traffic control device, and failure to provide proof of insurance.

The fatal crash occurred between a Cadillac STS car and Kawasaki Ninja motorcycle at the western exit of the Westcott Center.

Authorities said Patty, who was driving the Cadillac, made an improper left turn from a right-turn-only lane at that exit, and she failed to yield to Shephard, who was riding the motorcycle north on North Illinois Avenue. Shephard died as a result of his injuries.

For more information on this story, visit our partners at www.oakridgetoday.com.

About Jim Harris

Jim Harris has been WYSH's News & Sports Director since 2000. In addition to reporting local news, he is the play-by-play voice for Clinton High School football, boys' and girls' basketball and baseball. Catch Jim live weekdays beginning at 6:20 am for live local news, sports, weather and traffic plus the Community Bulletin Board, shenanigans with Ron Meredith and more on the Country Club Morning Show on WYSH & WQLA. Jim lives in Clinton with his wife Kelly and daughter Carolina, his mother-in-law and cats Lucius and Oliver.

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