KPD captures man sought in connection with 'suspicious' death

J. H. Osborne • Nov 21, 2019 at 11:16 PM

KINGSPORT — The manhunt for a “person of interest” in a “suspicious” death has ended, according to a statement issued late Thursday by the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office.

The following details were provided from a series of press releases from the sheriff’s office over the past two days:

• The “suspicious” death of Lewis Vaughn, 79, 622 Gravely Road, started the search for Jeffry Chase Caldwell, 31, of the same address. That residence is located just outside the city limits.

• In announcing the search, the SCSO described Caldwell as a “person of interest” in the death.

• On Thursday afternoon, the Kingsport Police Department received a call of a shoplifter at Kroger, 1664 E. Stone Drive, and the caller advised that the suspect was in a van in the parking lot. The vehicle registration was provided by the caller, and police determined it had been reported stolen from Johnson City.

• As KPD officers approached the vehicle, Caldwell allegedly attempted to leave in the van; however, officers were able to take him into custody. Caldwell reportedly was found to be in possession of items stolen from Kroger, and he was charged with resisting arrest, motor vehicle theft, and possession of stolen property.

• Caldwell was being held in the Kingsport City Jail Thursday.

• The SCSO expressed gratitude to the KPD for its role in taking Caldwell into custody.

• As the investigation is continuing, no further information about the death can be released at this time.

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