Cold Case: Roane County man brutally murdered in his home


PAINT ROCK (WATE) – Investigators in Roane County are still trying to piece together a 2001 murder.

They say Gene Keylon, 64, was found shot, stabbed, and beaten several times in his own home.

The motive behind the crime is believed to be robbery.

Keylon’s nephew, Dale Ward, says his uncle had a definite routine. He was at Paint Rock Baptist Church every Sunday and ate lunch at Galyons Store every afternoon.

When Keylon disappeared from his usual spots in October 2001 friends went looking for him. Investigators say that’s when he was found shot, stabbed and beaten in his house.

“Uncle Gene made our life happier. That’s the type of person he was. He deserves to be put to rest on this,” says Ward commenting on how no arrests have been made in the case nearly ten years later.

Ward says Keylon, who was retired and lived alone had withdrawn $15,000 in cash around the time he died. He had the money with him for an out of court settlement over a car accident.

Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton says the cash was believed to have been with Keylon at the time he was killed and not too many people would have known about it.

“Someone got into his house. It was someone he knew and had opened the door for. There was no force used to make entry. Once they were in, the person or persons probably rushed in and assaulted him,” said Sheriff Stockton.

The sheriff says they have some strong suspects, but not enough information to make an arrest.

The people in Paint Rock say as long as the killer is on the loose, they cannot get back the sense of security that comes with living in a small community.

“People who never locked their doors now lock their doors. The older people in our community especially freaked,” said Ward.

The Roane County Sheriff’s Office is still looking for people who can come forward with more information in this case.

If you have information, you can contact them at (865) 376-5582.

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