Two face assault, kidnapping charges

Becky Campbell • Mar 6, 2012 at 11:15 PM

A man and woman arrested last year on burglary charges are now accused of breaking into her mother’s home, assaulting two people and holding them against their will.

Troy S. Avery, 42, Johnson City, and Carmen R. Harkness, 32, 1201 Division St., were arrested Sunday at 1106 Spring St.

Both are charged with aggravated burglary, kidnapping and simple assault. Harkness has an additional charge of simple domestic assault for allegedly hitting her mother.

The incident happened at the home of Harkness’ mother, Beverly Rose, around 4:30 p.m. Sunday. Rose and two men, Keith Sellers and John Collins, are listed as the victims on a Johnson City Police Department report.

The three were inside the residence watching a movie when Harkness and Avery broke into the side window, according to what Collins told police.

“(Collins) stated out loud for Carmen to hear him that she needed to have more respect for her mother because he heard moaning and groaning coming from a back bedroom,” Officer J.T. Holleman wrote in the police report.

After Collins made that remark, he said Harkness came out of the bedroom with a broomstick handle and began to hit him in the head.

Collins and Sellers also told police Harkness hit her mother and threw her into a corner.

Collins left the house and called 911, but Sellers and Rose were unable to leave because Harkness and Avery slid a couch in front of the door to lock them inside.

Sellers and Rose told police they told Harkness they wanted to leave, but Harkness “threatened them if they were to go outside.”

As police were investigating the call, Holleman saw Harkness attempt to close and lock a side window. Officers pulled her out of the house through the window and arrested her, according to the report.

Harkness and Avery are jailed at the Washington County Detention Center. Harkness has a $72,000 bond and Avery is being held on a $50,000 bond.

Harkness and Avery are not strangers to jail and the court system. The two were arrested in July for a residential burglary on East Pine Street that occurred in June.

In that incident, the homeowner returned home to find two people he knew inside his home. According to reports, Harkness and Avery fled with items belonging to the homeowner. They were arrested shortly afterward.

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