SCSO: Man charged with murder in November 2019 death of step-grandfather


Jeffery Chase Caldwell

SULLIVAN COUNTY, Tenn. (WJHL)- A man previously identified as a person of interest in a death investigation from November 2019, has now been charged with first-degree murder.

Jeffrey Chase Caldwell, 32, of Kingsport, has been charged with first-degree murder and false reports regarding the death of Lewis Vaughn, 79.

Court documents obtained by News Channel 11 late last year revealed that Jeffery Caldwell’s wife, identified in court documents as Kayla Caldwell, reportedly called 911 in reference to an unresponsive male, Lewis Vaughn.

SEE ALSO: Court Documents: Wife of person of interest in Kingsport death investigation also arrested

In those court documents, it also revealed Kayla Caldwell reported to authorities that on the morning of November 19 she and her husband got into an argument and that, “Jefferey accused Kayla of having sexual relations with Vaughn and he threatened to kill her.”

Kayla reportedly told authorities that, “Jefferey was high on meth at the time and was acting crazy.”

While Kayla told authorities she left the house she did say she came home later that day and “noticed Jefferey’s shoes on the porch and broken glass.”

While Kayla Caldwell was arrested for charges of tampering with evidence and accessory after the fact to murder, Jeffrey was also arrested in November after Kingsport police responded to a shoplifting call Thursday afternoon at the Kroger on East Stone Drive.

MORE: Son of Kingsport victim speaks out in hopes of other families learning from his family’s tragedy

According to SCSO, Caldwell was found in a stolen car in the parking lot with items that had been stolen from the grocery store. Police say he tried to flee but officers were able to arrest him.

UPDATE: Person of interest in Kingsport death investigation arrested after shoplifting call; deceased individual identified

Authorities charged him with resisting arrest, motor vehicle theft, and possession of stolen property.

Jeffrey Caldwell now faces charges of first-degree murder, false reports charges, theft over $10,000, domestic assault, receiving or concealing stolen property, resisting stop / arrest, theft of property (motor vehicles), and violation of probation.

Authorities said Caldwell is being held without bond.

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