KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) – “Don Wells, I know you’re outside. I know you heard me.”
The words echoed across Ben Hill Road over the weekend as Don Wells stepped onto his front porch to record the sounds of several protesters hundreds of yards away from his home.
He filmed the same group of people calling out to him and his wife, Candus Bly Wells, yelling profanities and making accusations that the parents had something to do with the disappearance of their 5-year-old daughter, Summer Wells.
The group went to the Wells’ workplace in the Edinburgh community of Kingsport Monday, heckling the couple for answers they believe only the parents have.
“It’s scary, scary for sure. I mean, Candus was in tears and she was shaking and all that. She was scared,” Don Wells said.
He said the group of protesters had been to his house six times before tracking down one of the job sites where he installs drywalling for a living.
“They come in and started banging on the garage door and all the windows and everything and so I called my employer first and then we called the police and they come out. So they had to step off the property but they was out there making a big scene and everything so my employer, for the builder’s sake, for me to pull off the job so I had to pull off the job,” he said.
The group yelled in videos recorded by Wells that they just want to help find Summer.
“Let the police do their job. I mean, you know, I feel that they’re just making a mockery out of everything for their YouTube channel and personal gain,” Wells said.
When asked if he was afraid for his life, Wells said he was fortunate to be surrounded by good people.
“There at first it was very scary, but people, I don’t know, it could be bad. It could be dangerous, it has been. But we just want to get back to normal and work on ourselves and just try to do right as much as possible,” he said.
He said he thanked the Kingsport Police Department for responding to the incident Monday. He said a female police officer even extended a hug.
“They really come through for us today, here in Kingsport, and thank you so much. That hug that that woman gave us meant a lot to us. It really did, so thank you,” he said.
Wells said he has been looking for the silver lining lately.
“Considering all the hate and things coming our way, all the good positive things really make a difference for us,” he said.
Kingsport police confirmed that Wells filed a report following the incident in the Edinburgh community. The report is said to be available Tuesday.
In videos taken by Wells at the construction site, protesters are seen asking him for an interview. Wells said he does not want them to twist his words, so he tries to stay away from them.
But to him, Wells said, it’s not about what’s online. It’s about finding his missing girl.
“I can call TBI at any time and talk to them. But I’m sure if they had anything they would call me right away. I mean, they assure me when I call them that they’re still working on the case. They’re doing everything they can. They’re still checking into things and I even hear from people time to time where TBI just contacted them because their cell phone happened to ping in the area. So I know that they’re still working, and they’re still looking into things,” he said.