Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)

NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Kingsport Police Searching for Missing Endangered Adult
DATE: January 28, 2016
CASE #: 16-001827
GENERAL NARRATIVE
The Kingsport Police Department is requesting assistance from the public in locating a missing and potentially endangered adult. On January 27, 2016, Christopher A. West was reported missing by his sister. She stated that he had been out of contact with friends and family since December 1, 2015 and that this was very out of character for him.

Further investigation by the K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division revealed that Mr. West had been inactive on social media since mid-December; however, he was actually last seen on the evening of Christmas Day, December 25, 2015. A female acquaintance reported that Mr. West left her residence at Holly Hills Apartments #53, located at 3613 Watterson Street in Kingsport, that evening to run an errand, but he never returned, and she has had no contact with him since.

Mr. West often goes by the nickname of “Smurf.” He is described as a small-statured 39 year old white male. He is approximately 5 feet 6 inches in height and weighs roughly 160 pounds. He has short brown hair in a “buzz” or “crew” cut and brown eyes. He has a thin mustache and goatee and a large blue rose tattoo in the center of the back of his neck. He does not currently have a permanent home address and Detectives do not have any information regarding his clothing or means of transportation.

Based upon some additional reliable information relayed to Detectives during the course of the investigation, there is significant cause to be concerned for his safety and general welfare. The specific details of this information are being withheld at this time.

A photograph of Mr. West has been included in this release. He has been entered into N.C.I.C. as a missing endangered person. Anyone who sees him or knows his whereabouts, or who may have any additional information which may assist with this investigation is asked to contact Detectives at 423-229-9429 or call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111.

Alternatively, if an individual who is able to supply information related to this or any other case wishes not to be identified, tips can be submitted anonymously via online “Citizen Feedback” forms available at the following link:

http://police.KingsportTN.gov/Citizen_Feedback

MISSING ENDANGERED PERSON INFORMATION
Name Christopher A. West
Nickname “Smurf”
Age 39 Years of Age
Gender/Race Male/White
Height/

Weight
5 feet 6 inches

160 pounds

Hair/

Eyes
Short Brown Hair in a “Buzz” or “Crew” Cut

Brown Eyes

Facial Hair Thin Mustache and Goatee
Other

Identifiers
Large Blue Rose Tattoo in Center of the Back of his Neck
Last Point of Contact Evening of December 25, 2015

Holly Hills Apartments #53

3613 Watterson Street

Kingsport, TN

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

KATS_NEWS_12

KINGSPORT – KATS will be hosting its FREE FEBRUARY promotion in February, offering FREE RIDES ALL MONTH LONG ON TRANSIT BUSES AS WELL AS A FREE TICKETBOOK GIVEN TO DIAL-A-RIDE 65/ADA PASSENGERS WHO RIDE IN THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY (one 24-count ticket book per registered rider). KATS is located at 109 Clay Street.

Kats launched their newly renovated routes on Monday, January 25th. Some of the routes were slightly altered while others were dramatically changed in order to serve the community more efficiently and safely. Transit Director Gary Taylor stated that Free February will be the perfect time for seasoned riders as well as newcomers to become acquainted with all of the routes at no cost to them. With the snow and ice encountered in January, we thought it would be a perfect time to offer this promotion, since we had to alter hours and shut down service on a couple of those days.‚  We really hope to encourage new ridership during this time.

In a continued effort to highlight the many benefits of public transportation, KATS will be offering a series of monthly specials for the 2016 upcoming year. Many people enjoyed our Just Because January promotion which just took place during the month of January.‚  Stay tuned each month to see what will be offered! Make sure you take advantage of these deals, and tell your friends and family members. You can learn more about KATS at www.kingsporttransit.org.

WHAT:  FREE FEBRUARY KATS February Promotion

WHERE:   Route buses and Dial-A-Ride van service

WHEN:  February 1, 2016-February 29, 2016

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)

NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: K.P.D. Searching for Felony Shoplifter Who Concealed Loot in Suitcase
DATE: January 27, 2016
CASE #: 15-027448
GENERAL NARRATIVE
On December 19, 2015 at approximately 6:30 AM, an unknown suspect shoplifted over $750 in merchandise from Wal-Mart, located at 2500 West Stone Drive in Kingsport. The suspect concealed the merchandise in a large wheeled suitcase, which he then rolled out the door. Among the stolen items inside the suitcase were power tools, a video baby monitor, motorcycle gloves, flashlights, makeup, lithium batteries, and fishing line.

The incident was captured on store surveillance video. The suspect appears to be a white male adult, and he fled the scene in what appears to be a red, compact, 4-door sedan with a sunroof. Several photographs of the suspect and his vehicle, taken from surveillance footage, have been included in this release.

Anyone who recognizes him or his vehicle, or who may have any additional information which may help with this investigation, is asked to contact Detectives in the K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division at 423-229-9429 or call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111.

Alternatively, if an individual who is able to supply information related to this or any other case wishes not to be identified, tips can be submitted anonymously via online “Citizen Feedback” forms available at the following link:

http://police.KingsportTN.gov/Citizen_Feedback

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)

NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Second Suspect Identified and Arrested in Convenience Store Robbery
DATE: January 26, 2015
CASE #: 16-001246
GENERAL NARRATIVE
Following an initial news release concerning a recent convenience store robbery, the Kingsport Police Department received several tips from citizens regarding the possible identity of the second previously unidentified suspect. During the course of the investigation, largely supported by these citizen tips, Preston L. Franklin was positively identified as the second suspect. A warrant was promptly obtained for his arrest.

On January 25, 2016 at approximately 5:45 PM, Kingsport Police Patrol Officers located Mr. Franklin at 309 Akers Avenue in Kingsport and arrested him on the outstanding warrant for Aggravated Robbery without incident. He was transported to the Kingsport City Jail where he was confined pending arraignment.

The Kingsport Police Department would like to thank the good citizens whose tips were of invaluable assistance throughout this investigation.

As previously released:

On January 19, 2016 at approximately 5:00 AM, Kingsport Police Patrol Officers responded to an armed robbery at the Roadrunner Market, located at 3016 North John B. Dennis Highway in Kingsport. The clerk stated that two unknown male suspects had entered the store with their faces covered. One of the suspects was armed with a knife.

The suspects walked behind the counter and ordered the clerk to open the register. The clerk complied with their demands, and the suspects fled from the store with an undisclosed amount of cash. The suspects ran across John B. Dennis Highway, got into a white sedan, and were last seen driving north toward Bloomingdale Road.

During the course of the investigation by the K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division, Patrick O. Hansen was positively identified as one of the suspects, with a warrant being obtained charging him with Aggravated Robbery. On January 19, 2016 at approximately 10:00 PM, he was arrested at his residence, located at 253 Alabama Street.

He was confined overnight in the Kingsport City Jail until his arraignment the following morning, where his bond was set at $25,000 by the presiding judge. He was later transferred to the Sullivan County Jail in Blountville.

Mr. Hansen’s accomplice remains unidentified and at large. He is believed to be a white male who is approximately 6 feet tall and weighs roughly 180 pounds. Anyone who may have any information regarding his identity or whereabouts is asked to call Detectives in the K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division at 423-229-9429 or call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111.

Alternatively, if an individual who is able to supply information related to this or any other case wishes not to be identified, tips can be submitted anonymously via online “Citizen Feedback” forms available at the following link:

http://police.KingsportTN.gov/Citizen_Feedback

SUSPECT #1 INFORMATION
Name Patrick O. Hansen
Age Date of Birth 2/26/1992

23 Years of Age

Gender/Race Male/White
Residency 253 Alabama Street

Kingsport, TN

Charge(s) Aggravated Robbery
SUSPECT #2 INFORMATION
Name Preston L. Franklin
Age Date of Birth 11/8/1994

21 Years of Age

Gender/Race Male/White
Residency 2462 Idle Hour Road

Kingsport, TN

Charge(s) Aggravated Robbery
RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)

NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Kingsport Police Request Assistance in Identifying Suspect in Felony ATM Fraud
DATE: January 26, 2016
CASE #: 16-000189
GENERAL NARRATIVE
On January 1, 2016 an unknown suspect was able to unlawfully gain access to an individual’s bank account. The suspect generated fake electronic deposits for a total of $600 into the individual’s bank account, and then fraudulently withdrew $600 in cash from the same account using an Eastman Credit Union Automated Teller Machine (ATM) located at 2400 West Stone Drive in Kingsport.

A photo of what appears to be a white male suspect, captured on a video surveillance camera at the ATM, is included in this release. Anyone who recognizes him is asked to contact Detectives in the K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division at 423-229-9429 or call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111.

Alternatively, if an individual who is able to supply information related to this or any other case wishes not to be identified, tips can be submitted anonymously via online “Citizen Feedback” forms available at the following link:

http://police.KingsportTN.gov/Citizen_Feedback

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)
NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Recently Released Serial Stalker Believed to Be Engaged in Similar Behavior Again
DATE: January 25, 2016
CASE #: 16-001280

16-001413
GENERAL NARRATIVE
Convicted serial stalker, Albert J. Toronjo, who plagued the Kingsport area from 2012-2014, has recently been released from jail and placed on probation. During the course of their investigation into Mr. Toronjo’s socially aggressive behavior, the Kingsport Police Department received complaints from as many as 100 separate potential victims.

Mr. Toronjo entered into a universal guilty plea agreement in September 2014 on the charges of Stalking and Violation of Probation on a previous Burglary conviction. He has been incarcerated on that conviction since that time until his recent release on January 14, 2016. Unfortunately, however, it appears that he may already be up to his old antics again.

Within one week of his release, the Kingsport Police Department already received two new complaints regarding Mr. Toronjo. On January 19, 2016 one of Mr. Toronjo’s prior victims filed a report with the Kingsport Police Department regarding him unlawfully trespassing on her property. And on January 21, 2016 an area business filed a report with K.P.D. regarding Mr. Toronjo making unwelcomed advances toward a female employee.

His “modus operandi” (method of operation) is believed to be the same as before. He has been known to:

1) Pose as a handyman looking for work.

2) Use “hire it done” services to mask his true intentions.

3) Hand out flyers.

4) Go door to door soliciting work, conversation, friendship, and relationships.

5) Drive through neighborhoods and make unsolicited contact with unsuspecting victims who are working outside in their yards.

6) Be very quick to be socially aggressive.

7) Make sexual innuendos without provocation.

8) Prefer victims who are older, widowed, or single women who live alone.

9) Use garage/yard sales as an opportunity for initial contact with victims.

10) Sit in his vehicle at the curb outside victims’ homes.

11) Persistently drive by his victims’ homes.

12) Persistently harass his victims via telephone.

13) “Groom” his victims over time or simply wear them down with persistence.

14) Mention “having coffee” in an attempt to gain access to victims’ homes.

The K.P.D. Criminal Investigations Division is currently investigating these new allegations against Mr. Toronjo. In the meantime, citizens are urged to familiarize themselves with his methodology, exercise appropriate caution, and report any encounters with him of this nature to the Kingsport Police Department immediately.

Links to previous news releases regarding Albert J. Toronjo have been included below:

http://kingsportpdblog.com/2014/05/15/kpd-e-news-release-kingsport-police-request-citizens-come-forward-in-ongoing-criminal-investigation/

http://kingsportpdblog.com/2014/05/23/kpd-e-news-release-serial-stalking-suspect-arrested-on-violation-of-probation-warrant/

http://kingsportpdblog.com/2014/05/30/kpd-e-news-release-serial-stalker-albert-joseph-toronjo-arrested-on-new-charges/

A photograph and description of Mr. Toronjo have been included in this release as well.

SUSPECT INFORMATION
Name Albert Joseph Toronjo
Age Date of Birth 12/19/50

65 Years of Age

Gender/Race Male/White
Height/

Weight
5 feet, 5 inches

150 pounds

Hair/

Eyes
Gray Hair

Brown Eyes

Last Known Address 1608 Redwood Street

Kingsport, TN

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)
NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Kingsport Police Announce Upcoming Sobriety Checkpoint
DATE: January 25, 2016
GENERAL NARRATIVE
In the ongoing effort to reduce the problem of driving under the influence and related crashes, the Kingsport Police Department will be conducting a D.U.I. Sobriety Checkpoint during the evening hours of Friday, January 29, 2016. This Checkpoint will be held at an undisclosed location within the City of Kingsport.

K.P.D. stresses that Tennessee D.U.I. laws apply not just to alcohol, but to any substance that impairs, including illegal drugs, over-the-counter (OTC) medications, as well as prescription drugs, even if they are prescribed by a physician.

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

City_News_197

UPDATE: The Information Technology Department has cancelled Fridays maintenance on the computer system due to the threat of inclement weather.

This maintenance has been rescheduled for next Friday, January 29th from 8:00 am to 9:00 am.

On Friday, January 29nd from approximately 8:00 am to 9:00 am, the Citys main computer system (IBM AS/400) will be temporarily out of service for maintenance. This will affect many areas of the City including the Customer Service Center at City Hall, the Citys website GovNow, the Citys Automated Phone Payment System (IVR), and Building Permits, to name a few.

The Citys Information Technology Department will be working quickly in order to have the system back online as soon as possible. While the downtime is estimated to be only one hour, it may be longer.

During this downtime, the Citys Customer Service Center at City Hall will continue operations.‚  However, services will be limited until the computer system is back online. The Customer Service Center will continue to accept payments from customers for property taxes, utility accounts and other payment types, but will only be able to issue handwritten receipts.

Customers coming to City Hall to make payments during this brief period of time are asked to make sure to bring a copy of their utility, tax or other statement so account information can be properly referenced on their handwritten receipt. Once the computer system is back online, all payments will be properly keyed and entered into the customers accounts.

We appreciate our citizens and customers cooperation and patience during this time and apologize for any inconvenience.

Kingsport Police Department

200 Shelby Street • Kingsport, TN 37660
ThomasMPatton • 423-229-9433 (Desk) • 423-224-2786 (FAX)
NEWS RELEASE
SUBJECT: Kingsport Police Stress Caution and Preparedness in Light of Continued Winter Weather Forecast
DATE: January 21, 2016
GENERAL NARRATIVE
As of January 21, 2016 at 10:30 AM, the Kingsport Police Department has responded to 54 weather related motor vehicle collisions (5 of which resulted in injury), 47 weather related stranded motorists, and 5 weather related abandoned vehicles since the start of this most recent winter weather event. And every single one of these motorists in the above statistics had one thing in common…they thought their driving skill and their vehicle’s abilities were capable of handling the conditions…but they were mistaken.

Anyone who was forced to abandon their vehicle yesterday or overnight due to the weather is asked to make arrangements to have that vehicle moved as soon as possible. Today’s break in the weather has offered a window of opportunity to accomplish this before the next winter storm strikes. Any vehicles abandoned on roadways or right-of-ways that are not removed in a timely manner by the owner will have to be towed by the Kingsport Police Department at the owner’s expense.

The National Weather Service has issued a second Winter Storm Warning which is in effect from midnight tonight, January 21, 2016, until 4:00 AM on Sunday, January 24, 2016. A winter storm is expected to impact the region this weekend, bringing heavy snowfall of 2 to 5 inches to the area. The snow will cause hazardous driving conditions, especially on secondary roads. During the height of the snowfall, some roads may become impassable. Snowfall intensities may be enough to substantially reduce visibility. Travel is discouraged.

Should this forecast come to fruition, the Kingsport Police Department will continue to stress for citizens to STAY HOME UNLESS IT IS AN ABSOLUTE EMERGENCY! K.P.D. would like to reiterate the following winter weather driving tips to area motorists.

1) When in doubt, STAY HOME. If the roads are covered with snow and/or ice and travel is not an emergency, the answer is simple…STAY OFF THE ROAD! Be patient and let Public Works crews do their job and get the roads cleared for safe travel.

2) If you absolutely must travel, slow everything down. Everything should be done slower…slower acceleration, slower braking, slower steering, etc. Leave extra room (a safety buffer) in front of and behind your vehicle. Also, plan ahead. If you know that you are going to need to stop or turn ahead, don’t wait until the last second to start the process. Motorists should also seek a route that incorporates the most level streets and the least amount of incline. And yes, this advice applies to seemingly invincible 4 wheel drive vehicles as well.

3) If you absolutely must travel, stock your car with emergency items such as a charged cell phone with charger, a flashlight with extra batteries, jumper cables, warm clothing, blankets, food, water, boots, gloves, a shovel, sand or cat litter for traction, etc.

4) Turn on your headlights…not just your corner parking lights, but your actual headlights. Your headlights should be on so that you can see, but even more importantly, so that you can be seen by other motorists. This suggestion is even more critical for automobiles that are the same color as snow (white) or the same color as the pavement (silver, gray, charcoal, black, etc.)

5) If your car becomes stuck and it is safely off the roadway, and you need to temporarily abandon it, call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111 and let them know who you are, the make, model, color, and license plate number of your vehicle, and a number where you can be reached.

6) If your car becomes stuck and it is still in the roadway, turn on your hazard lights, call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111, and stay with your vehicle until a police officer and wrecker arrive to remove it from the traffic lane.

Citizens are encouraged to regularly check in on any elderly or disabled family members, friends, or neighbors. Pets need to be brought inside or at the very least given plenty of food and water (unfrozen), and appropriate warm/dry bedding and shelter. Winter storms also often result in power outages, water line breaks, downed trees, and other issues.

Power outages should be reported 24 hours-a-day to American Electric Power (A.E.P.) by calling 800-967-4237.

During regular business hours, water line breaks can be reported directly to the City of Kingsport Water Department by calling 423-229-9416.

Also during regular business hours, hazardous roadway conditions, downed trees, etc. can be reported directly to the City of Kingsport Public Works Department by calling 423-229-9451.

After hours, both of these issues may be reported by calling the NON-EMERGENCY number to Kingsport Central Dispatch, 423-246-9111.

CALLING 9-1-1 SHOULD ALWAYS BE RESERVED FOR GENUINE EMERGENCIES!

RELEASING OFFICER
Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer

Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit

KPD_News_10

KINGSPORT – The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory that remains in effect until 1:00 AM on Thursday, January 21, 2016.‚  Snow has been falling throughout the day with local accumulations of 1 to 3 inches possible.‚  Temperatures are expected to remain below freezing throughout the day today and overnight.

Area roadways are already covered with a dangerous combination of snow and ice.‚  Travel conditions are hazardous, and the Kingsport Police Department has already responded to numerous weather related traffic crashes.‚  Kingsport Public Works crews are currently in the process of attempting to clear major thoroughfares; however, precipitation continues to fall.‚  Secondary roadways remain completely covered.

Most, if not all, area school systems wisely chose to heed the forecast and cancel school today, thus greatly decreasing the number of motorists on area roadways.‚  Citizens are strongly encouraged to stay put unless travel is an absolute emergency. ‚ The Kingsport Police Department would like to suggest the following winter weather driving tips to area motorists.

1)‚ ‚  When in doubt, STAY HOME. If the roads are covered with snow and/or ice and travel is not an emergency, the answer is simple‚¬¦STAY OFF THE ROAD! Be patient and let Public Works crews do their job and get the roads cleared for safe travel.

2)‚ ‚  If you absolutely must travel, slow everything down. Everything should be done slower‚¬¦slower acceleration, slower braking, slower steering, etc. Also, plan ahead. If you know that you are going to need to stop or turn ahead, dont wait until the last second to start the process. Motorists should also seek a route that incorporates the most level streets and the least amount of incline. And yes, this advice applies to seemingly invincible 4 wheel drive vehicles as well.

3)‚ ‚  If you absolutely must travel, stock your car with emergency items such as a charged cell phone with charger, a flashlight with extra batteries, jumper cables, warm clothing, blankets, bard, water, boots, gloves, a shovel, sand or cat litter for traction, etc.

4)‚ ‚  Turn on your headlights‚¬¦not just your corner parking lights, but your actual headlights. Your headlights should be on so that you can see, but even more importantly, so that you can be seen by other motorists. This suggestion is even more critical for automobiles that are the same color as snow (white) or the same color as the pavement (silver, gray, charcoal, black, etc.)

5)‚ ‚  If your car becomes stuck and it is safely off the roadway, and you need to temporarily abandon it, call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111 and let them know who you are, the make, model, color, and license plate number of your vehicle, and a number where you can be reached.

If your car becomes stuck and it is still in the roadway, turn on your hazard lights, call Kingsport Central Dispatch at 423-246-9111, and stay with your vehicle until a police officer and wrecker arrive to remove it from the traffic lane.