Lake Junaluska to host National Day of Prayer

A National Day of Prayer service will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, May 2, at the outdoor amphitheater below the Cross at Lake Junaluska. 

Stoner’s Ball brings legal high to Haywood County

The Stoner’s Ball is coming to Haywood County, but it may not be quite what people think. 

One person hospitalized after officer-involved shooting in Haywood County

The State Bureau of Investigation is investigating an officer-involved shooting with the Haywood County Sheriff’s office over the weekend.

2023 A Look Back: Not on my Watch Award

Newly elected Haywood County Sheriff Bill Wilke stepped into some big shoes following the retirement of longtime Sheriff Greg Christopher, but earlier this year Wilke showed Haywood County, along with some of its most vulnerable residents, that he wears some pretty damn big shoes himself. 

HCSO to release body cam footage to plaintiff alleging Fourth Amendment violation

The Haywood County Sheriff’s Office has been ordered by a judge to provide dash and body cam footage to a man who claims his Fourth Amendment rights may have been violated.

The state of the sheriff’s office: Haywood’s top cop drops data, details from his first year

It’s been just under a year since Bill Wilke became Haywood County’s sheriff, after longtime popular incumbent, Greg Christopher, decided to call it a career.

Above the law: Sheriffs largely silent on sovereign group’s meeting

A controversial law enforcement association that holds a fringe interpretation of the Constitution and has ties to white nationalism, the sovereign citizen movement, election denial and COVID-19 conspiracy theories will host a meeting in Cherokee County this weekend, but Western North Carolina sheriffs have been largely reluctant to say whether they’ll attend. 

Eating an elephant: Canton, county will solve huge mill problems by taking small bites

No one living can remember a time when there wasn’t a paper mill at the heart of Canton. Now, after 115 years in operation, it all comes down to three months.

New sheriffs shuffle staffs

Across North Carolina’s seven westernmost counties, a whole slew of new sheriffs was sworn in on Monday, Dec. 5.

Wilke to become next Haywood Sheriff

Private investigator, retired Army colonel, former Asheville police officer Bill Wilke will be sworn in as the first elected Republican sheriff in Haywood County since at least the early 1960s — if not ever — after a convincing victory Tuesday night.

Smokey Mountain News Logo
Go to top
Payment Information


At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.