Man indicted on charge placed after gun incident at family meeting

Brad Hicks • Jan 11, 2014 at 10:59 AM

ERWIN — A Unicoi County grand jury Friday indicted a county man arrested last year for allegedly pointing a gun at and threatening a member of his family.

Brice McGhee Jr., 4560 Old Asheville Highway, was indicted on a single charge of aggravated assault.

Officials with the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Department previously said they were called to a residence at 4561 Old Asheville Highway on the evening of Nov. 3 in response to a report of a man wielding a gun. The police report said officers found “numerous people” at the home who advised officials that McGhee was in the house across the street and still had a gun.

During police interviews with members of McGhee’s family and other witnesses, it was learned that McGhee’s family had met at the 4561 Old Asheville Highway residence to discuss the finances and last wishes of McGhee’s mother, who had passed away earlier in the week. Police officials said McGhee had sent his girlfriend to the family meeting in his place.

“The other family members stated that they felt that he should be there in person instead of her, so they sent her out to go and get him,” the police affidavit said. “When the defendant arrived, he was angry and had a pistol.”

Unicoi County Sheriff Mike Hensley previously said McGhee may have felt it was too soon after his mother’s death to discuss the matters, leading him to become upset.

The affidavit said witnesses reported that after some yelling, McGhee pointed the gun at his brother, turned the weapon’s safety off and said “if you say one word, I’ll blow your brains out.”

Hensley said when officers arrived, McGhee would not respond or exit his residence. The sheriff said he was familiar with McGhee and the family and was able to enter the residence, where he talked McGhee into turning the gun over. Hensley said McGhee admitted to pointing the gun at his brother.

McGhee is scheduled to appear in Criminal Court on Feb. 21.

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