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Cold case murder tied to ousted Tennessee governor

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) — Law enforcement officials have announced that a former Tennessee governor’s administration helped fund a contract murder of a key federal witness decades ago while embroiled in the state’s largest political scandal.

Investigators in Hamilton County have been chipping away the 42-year-old cold case of Samuel Pettyjohn since they renewed their investigation in 2015.

The Chattanooga businessman and close friend of union boss Jimmy Hoffa was gunned down in 1979 in downtown Chattanooga after testifying before a federal grand jury during the early phases Tennessee’s notorious “cash-for-clemency” scandal.

The scandal ultimately led to the ousting of Democratic Gov. Ray Blanton, who was never indicted in the investigation. Three of his aides were.

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