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Grand jury returns multiple indictments

Becky Campbell • Nov 17, 2019 at 6:33 PM

A Johnson City teenager allegedly involved in a home invasion this summer was indicted by a Washington County grand jury on charges related to the incident.

Dupree N. Palomino, now 18, was 17 when he was arrested with another teenager and two adults for a June 1 incident at an apartment on Carroll Creek Road. Palomino was indicted earlier this month on charges of aggravated robbery and two counts each of aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and aggravated burglary.

He was originally charged through Johnson City Juvenile Court, but Judge Sharon Green transferred the case to Criminal Court after a hearing in October.

Johnson City police were dispatched to the home invasion call at Deanwood Apartments, 1112 Carroll Creek Road, around 3:40 a.m. June 1 after a report of a woman being threatened by someone with a gun. When officers arrived, they saw three men dressed in dark clothing leaving the apartment. When officers ordered the three to stop, they took off running through some nearby woods.

The victims, Brandon Woodson and Belle Bright, told police the men had kicked in the apartment door and threatened them with a gun, then stole around $2,200. A K9 officer and his handler tracked a trail to a backpack at 4205 Ranch Road. The dog then continued to search and led his handler to an unsecured basement door of a residence on LaCasa Drive. One juvenile was found hiding in the basement and officers took him into custody.

Woodson and Bright testified Wednesday they were upstairs and a friend and the friend’s infant were downstairs in the apartment when the boyfriend saw a Mercury Mountaineer driving around the apartment area. There was a knock at the front door, but they didn’t answer it. A few minutes later, the back door was kicked in and three men went upstairs.

Woodson said Palomino had a handgun and they wrestled over it. The gun went off and the bullet went through the floor — the ceiling of the downstairs — and into the couch where the other woman and her child had been sleeping.

Other indictments included:

• Billy Riley, 61, 602 University Parkway, and April Guinn, 26, whose last known address was at a mobile home park on South Roan Street, were each indicted on aggravated assault and aggravated robbery related to an Aug. 22 incident

A surveillance video assisted authorities in identifying two people accused of severely beating and robbing a man — who apparently used a wheelchair to get around — found unconscious in Gray in August. The man had suffered head injuries, having been kicked multiple times on the head by Riley, while Guinn took money from his pockets, police said.

The man, Steve Reece, was found on the ground in the parking lot of a convenience store. Beside him was a wheelchair in two pieces, according to a court record. The officers noticed a surveillance camera at the business that was pointing in the man’s general direction. It showed a silver SUV pulling into the parking lot. The driver got out, pulled the man out of the vehicle and threw him face down onto the pavement.

According to the court affidavit, the driver stepped on the man’s head while the other passenger appeared to be going through his pockets.

The driver went to the back of the SUV and pulled out a wheelchair and tossed it onto the ground in two pieces. The driver then went back over to the man and stomped on his head seven or eight times before the two left.

• Tyler S. Penley, 28, was indicted on attempted first-degree murder, aggravated assault and domestic assault. Washington County deputies responded to 658 Providence Road after the alleged victim, Jeffrey R. Glick, called 911 saying he had been stabbed multiple times

Penley lived in the home with Glick, and deputies took him into custody after Glick and witnesses reported Penley had stabbed the man. In a court record, Sgt. Gary Daugherty reported that witnesses said Penley attacked Glick with a stainless steel, straight-edge knife he had taken from the kitchen counter. They told deputies the attack occurred while Glick was standing defenseless in the living room.

• Ronald A. Pierce, 37, 2470 Lakewood Drive, on charges of aggravated robbery, aggravated assault and aggravated kidnapping.

Pierce was arrested in September after allegations he assaulted his girlfriend after she refused to take him to him buy drugs. The girlfriend told police she and Pierce had been dating for a few months when the assault happened Sept. 15. The two were on their way from shopping when Pierce allegedly wanted to stop somewhere to buy drugs. The woman refused several times before Pierce put her car into park and grabbed the keys.

The woman told police Pierce pulled out a pocketknife and cut her purse strap.While doing that, Pierce cut the woman’s hand as she tried to defend herself. Then he allegedly held the knife to her throat and said “we would both die,” if she didn’t take him to buy drugs.

The woman finally drove toward the Kingsport Highway, but asked Pierce if she could stop at a convenience store to get a rag for her bleeding. He allowed her to do so and when she went inside she asked the clerk to call 911, then locked herself in the bathroom.

An indictment by a grand jury is not evidence of guilt. All people charged with a crime are presumed innocent until convicted in court.

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