Grand jury clears Kingsport officer in fatal shooting during domestic call

Rain Smith • Jun 3, 2010 at 2:06 AM

On Tuesday a Sullivan County Grand Jury cleared a Kingsport police officer who fatally shot a man during a domestic disturbance call.

Officer Thomas Wayt, a seven-year veteran of the department, shot Perry Douglas Long on Feb. 13. According to police, central dispatch had received a call that a female had been beaten and was running from a man outside of 2010 Bruce St., Long's residence.

According to Kingsport Police Chief Gale Osborne, Long pointed a gun at Wayt when he arrived at the scene. Wayt responded by shooting Long.

Osborne noted a young child of the couple was home at the time of the incident, but was not injured.

An investigation of the incident was launched by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, which is typical when an officer is involved in a shooting. They then delivered their findings to Sullivan County District Attorney Greeley Wells, who presented the evidence to the grand jury.

Wells said he wasn't surprised Wayt was cleared in the case.

"I would not have anticipated (the grand jury) would have taken any action," Wells said. "I don't think officer Wayt had any choice other than to do what he did."

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