Thanks to a tip from a person who saw a media report, a suspect wanted in the assault and robbery of a Corryton man late Tuesday night was arrested Thursday in LaFollette.
The incident, described as a home invasion and robbery, occurred at around 11:30 pm on March 14 when 65-year-old Robert McCowan returned to his home on Shelton Road in Corryton and found the suspect inside his house. The suspect hit him over the head with a metal pipe and stole several items, including McCowan’s car.
Shelton was taken to a hospital for treatment of head wounds and is said to be recovering.
The Knox County Sheriff’s Office major Crimes Unit identifies the suspect as 38-year-old Jeffrey Eric Smiddy was arrested Thursday at a residence off of East Ash Street in La Follette on an aggravated robbery warrant. More charges are pending, according to the KCSO.
Media reports describing McCowan’s silver Nissan Altima prompted a citizen to recognize the vehicle and report it to the LaFollette Police Department. A short time later, an officer there spotted the victim’s car as it was being driven but lost sight of it. Deputies from the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office later found the car near the home where Smiddy was arrested without incident.
In a press release, Knox County authorities say the Major Crimes Unit is continuing its investigation and has recovered all of the stolen items. The KCSO also extended thanks to both the Campbell County Sheriff’s Office and LaFollette Police Department for their assistance.