Alleged pizza spitter, gunman, meth maker indicted in Unicoi County

Brad Hicks • May 22, 2014 at 9:21 AM

ERWIN — A Bristol man accused of pointing a gun at a Unicoi woman and attempting to steal vehicles, a local woman accused of spitting in a police official’s dinner, an Erwin man arrested last year on more than 20 methamphetamine-related charges, and a sixth man allegedly involved in a restaurant burglary/home invasion case in Unicoi were among those indicted by a grand jury on Wednesday in Unicoi County Criminal Court.

Keenan A. Shepard, 231 Lywood St., Bristol, was indicted on the charges of aggravated assault, possession of a schedule VI drug, possession of a firearm during a felony, attempted theft over $1,000 and vandalism.

Shepard was arrested by the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Department on March 26. According to UCSD officials, about 1 p.m. that day, a woman living on Sugar Hollow Road reported that a man, later identified as Shepard, showed up at her home requesting a ride. Police said this was an alleged attempt to steal the woman’s vehicle.

When the woman refused Shepard’s request, he “pulled a handgun and stuck it between her eyes,” Sheriff Mike Hensley said previously. Shepard then fled and attempted to steal a truck at another nearby residence, having ditched another vehicle registered to a Carter County resident in the area, police said.

After an unsuccessfully attempting to steal this vehicle, Shepard took off running through the neighborhood, Hensley said. Hensley said he received a call from someone living on Unicoi Drive who reported Shepard was on the back deck of her home. Hensley said when he went to the residence, he saw Shepard sitting in the driver’s seat of one of the cars parked behind the home. Shepard was taken into custody.

The UCSD said Shepard was found in possession of a loaded handgun and a bag containing an estimated three to five pounds of marijuana.

Shepard is scheduled to appear in Criminal Court for arraignment on June 27.

On May 13, a federal grand jury indicted Shepard on charges of attempted carjacking, possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense. He is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Greeneville on June 11 for an arraignment hearing.

Amanda Engle, 30, 729 Rock Creek Road, was indicted on one count of vandalism under $500. Engle is accused of spitting on a pizza purchased by UCSD Chief Deputy Frank Rogers while she was working at the Erwin Pizza Hut.

Engle was arrested in January and charged with disorderly conduct. This charge was amended to vandalism at March hearing in Sessions Court.

According to an arrest report written by Rogers, Rogers went to the Pizza Hut where Engle worked on Jan. 23 to pick up pizzas he had earlier ordered by phone. Engle did not ask Rogers for his name but rang up the pizzas and advised Rogers they were still in the oven and would be ready in a few minutes. Rogers wrote that he sat on the bench in front of the counter and saw Engle spit on his pizza that she had begun to slice.

Hensley said Engle’s alleged action was in retaliation for a driving under the influence-related charge placed against her by Rogers last year.

Engle is scheduled to appear in Criminal Court on June 19.

The grand jury also indicted Kevin P. Craig, the last of the six men allegedly involved in the Unicoi restaurant burglary/home invasion case. Craig was charged with facilitation of burglary and facility of theft of property $1,000 or more but less than $10,000.

Craig was charged for alleged involvement in the Oct. 17 burglary of the Maple Grove Restaurant. According to the UCSD, a break in this case came after the Dec. 9 invasion of a Pleasant Hill Drive home. A woman reported that when she returned home after work, two men wearing ski masks approached her and forced her into her home, where they used duct tape to restrain her to a chair. Police said the men demanded the combination to a home safe, threatening to kill her husband upon his return to the home if she did not provide it. After the victim told the men she did not have the combination, the men fled, police said.

On Dec. 18, Cory Livesay and Anthony James Davis — later identified by police as the men who restrained the victim — were arrested and, on Dec. 20, Craig, Calvin Sams, Jamison Foster and Tyler Salyers were taken into custody.

UCSD Chief Investigator Ronnie Adkins testified at a January preliminary hearing that Livesay, after being picked up on a probation violation charge, admitted his involvement in the home invasion and told officials he and Davis waited on the victim, Wanda Vance, to return to her home. Adkins testified that Davis told police Foster gave him and Livesay a ride to the scene while Salyers served as a “lookout man.”

At that hearing, Adkins said Davis also provided information on the October burglary of the Maple Grove Restaurant, which is owned by Vance and her husband. Davis told officials he lowered Sams through the restaurant’s roof to gain entry, and Foster and Craig were waiting nearby as the burglary was committed, according to Adkins.

Livesay, Davis, Foster, Sams and Salyers were indicted in March and are scheduled to appear in Criminal Court on June 19. Craig is set to appear in Criminal Court on June 27.

Also charged on Wednesday was Eric M. Wall, 27, 200 Four Seasons Circle, Apt. D2. Wall was indicted on 21 counts of promoting the manufacture of methamphetamine and one count each of initiating the process to manufacture methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia and attempted child neglect.

Wall was arrested in December. According to the affidavit of complaint written by Erwin Police Detective Tony Buchanan, officers went to Wall’s apartment on Dec. 7 after his daughter had described to her grandparents an explosion and fire at her parents’ apartment.

Wall is scheduled to appear in Criminal Court on June 27.

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