Joel Porter joins WHNT after working the last three years in South Bend, Indiana.

He previously worked at stations in Grand Forks and Bismarck as a reporter and morning anchor before moving to Eugene, Oregon where he anchored the morning show, reported and filled in on weather.

If you have a story idea to share, send him an email at

Recent Articles
  • 16-year-old charged with arson and murder in connection with fire that killed his mother

    MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. – The Morgan County Sheriff’s Office has made an arrest in connection with a fatal fire in the Joppa community that is being investigated as arson and murder. The fire claimed the life of  32-year-old Kimberley Lamons. Authorities said Lamons died from smoke inhalation. Family members told WHNT that she ran back into the home to save her 9-year-old daughter, Cynthia. Kimberly Lamons’ mother and daughter both survived the fire. 16-year-old Nicholas Clay Lamons, the son of the victim, has been […]

  • Storm cleanup costly, tiring for Decatur homeowners

    DECATUR, Ala.– City leaders in Decatur finished inspecting more homes and businesses damaged in this month’s storm. Unfortunately, there’s no state or federal money to help with repairs and rebuilding.  But at least a few people haven’t given up trying to help. “So, I came back to a surprise,” George Wallace said. A surprise is putting it mildly. The April storm in Decatur brought down two large oaks, one on Wallace’s Ford, the other on his Dodge pickup. “There’s nothing […]

  • Americans get extra time to finish tax returns

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala — Millions of Americans can sleep soundly knowing they’ve already done their taxes and received their refunds. Those who haven’t, now have until midnight Tuesday. Since the 15th falls on a Sunday, government buildings are closed, and Monday the 16th is Emancipation Day, a government holiday. “It’s usually the last day where we get a mad dash of people coming in,” Liberty Tax Services preparer Karen Maloy said. Maloy said you may not believe it– but while the majority […]

  • Saturday rain doesn’t dampen prom night for Bob Jones High School students

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala.–This weekend’s rain resulted in the cancellation of several events around north Alabama. However, hundreds of kids at Bob Jones High School who already made plans for prom were relieved when school leaders said the big event would go on as planned. “When you start trying to plan for this time of year, most of the weekends are already full,” Sandy Bolton said. Bolton’s daughter was attending her senior prom. “We’d originally planned to go to Big Spring Park. You […]

  • Torch Technologies set to build new lab in Huntsville

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala. —  A company in Huntsville is ready to start a $6 million expansion. Torch Technologies will be hiring around 40 more scientists when they open their new lab near Memorial Parkway. Right now, it’s just a few colorful stakes in the ground on an empty grass lot. “It’d be a little anticlimactic if we had a big hole in the ground,” Torch CEO Bill Roark said. But any day, Bill Roark knows this lot will start to take shape. […]

  • Austin High School moves prom hoping to avoid weekend storms

    DECATUR, Ala. — School leaders in Decatur are preparing for more rough weather this weekend.  Austin High School is planning on hosting their prom one night early in hopes of dressing up for better weather. As school lets out from AHS on Thursday afternoon, the dash is on. “Get the tux fixed, get everything made, then haircuts, the girls were complaining about their hair appointments,” Austin High junior Jamaal Burks said. Young men getting dressed up for prom this weekend […]

  • Thrive Alabama shows off new HIV testing truck

    HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Tuesday was known as Youth HIV and Aids Awareness Day around the country. It was fitting that a group in Huntsville unveiled a new truck they’ll use to serve more people living with STD’s. A great big bus and a festive party. Thrive Alabama is well known for serving people living with HIV and other illnesses. “We cover Mississippi to Georgia and Tennessee down to Birmingham,” Thrive Alabama CEO Mary Elizabeth Marr said. Despite having a budget of […]

  • Classes resume at Jacksonville State University after tornado

    JACKSONVILLE, Ala. — Three weeks after an EF-3 tornado ripped through Jacksonville, leaders at the university welcomed students back to classes. Thankfully, nobody was killed in the storm. Graduation is less than a month away, and many of the student housing buildings were so damaged, students had to look for other places to stay to finish out the year. Many of them are opting to stay home until next fall. “All of my roommates were gone for spring break,” JSU […]

  • Decatur police warn of possible storm-related scams

    DECATUR, Ala.– Good news for homeowners in the dark since Tuesday’s storm. On Friday evening,  Decatur Utilities has restored service to all but three customers who are able to take power right now. About 50 customers are being told they have damage that has to be repaired and inspected before their electric service can be reconnected. And while cleanup continues, police in Decatur are warning people to be wary of possible scams. Brenda Jones, like many families in northwest Decatur, was […]

  • Frustration grows for Decatur families still waiting on power

    DECATUR, Ala. – Nearly 100 homes were damaged during Tuesday’s storm in Decatur. And city leaders say at least a handful of those homes will have to be torn down. “It’s awful. You can’t really do anything about it,” Brian Perez said while looking at his car which was crushed by a tree. Crumpled cars and crippled houses are easy to spot on Decatur’s northwest side. “This is the worst damage I’ve seen in our city since 1974,” Decatur Mayor […]

  • Neighbors pitch in to clean up after the storm

    DECATUR, Ala. — People in Decatur are slowly getting their power turned back on after Tuesday night’s storm. People on the northwest end of town are pitching in to help one another out. No sense wasting a sunny day. Tuesday’s storm in Decatur may have been short-lived, but it was strong enough to uproot trees and knock out power to hundreds. “From all indications, these were microbursts and straight-line winds that came through at 70, 75, 80 miles an hour,” […]

  • Woman thanks two strangers who helped her off tipping boat during storm

    DECATUR, Ala. — Tuesday night’s storm severely damaged the Riverwalk Marina. Several boats were damaged, some even sank. The metal roofing was twisted and torn by the straight line winds. One woman was inside her boat when it happened and she is thankful for two men who helped her and her dog to safety. It was about 10:30 Tuesday night when Lisa Spencer and her dog Daisy were sound asleep, tucked into her boat on the Riverwalk Marina, when she […]