Knox County Sheriff’s Office still investigating suspects in a string of burglaries

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – One of the victims of at least 62 home burglaries allegedly committed by the same Knox County man says this wasn’t the first time her house was broken into, but she hopes it’s the last.

Paris James Long was arrested late last month on six warrants and is being charged with aggravated burglaries and driving on a revoked license.

Deputies say he agreed to cooperate with them by identifying the homes he had burglarized on a map, then was driven around by deputies to point out even more houses.

Deputies say as many as five other suspects may still be out there.

“They had turned up every drawer in the chest, you couldn’t hardly walk in the house,” said Dixie Cruze.

Dixie Cruze was at church when her house on Strawberry Plains Pike was broken into three weeks ago. She says she couldn’t believe this was happening to her again.

“Last year I guess, some guy came and broke down my door in the basement and stole my sons power washer,” said Cruze.

Cruze says when she came home that Sunday after church, all the mattresses were flipped over, her floor was completely covered and every dresser drawer was pulled out.

“They broke down the back door. One of my sons took all afternoon to fix it and get a deadbolt lock to put on it. They even broke the knob on it,” said Cruze.

Lt. Mark Harvey with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office says they’re pursuing several leads to catch whoever else is involved with the 62 burglaries in the county.

“They were able to identify one suspect and get him into custody,” said Harvey. “He provided them information which led us clearing 62 burglaries cases in Knox County alone.”

“I was really aggravated because somebody who has moved in around here is watching when I leave and I don’t go much,” said Cruze.

Cruze says a lot of sentimental items were taken including several bags of costume jewelry. Now she has a deadbolt lock her doors and she says she’s leaning on support from her family.

“We’re all just praying it’s scary really,” said Cruze.

Harvey says detectives recovered jewelry, electronics, firearms and other personal items valued around $25,000. If your home was broken into in the past month, the Knox County Sheriff’s Office has several pieces of jewelry and personal items at their office located on West Main Street.

They are asking homeowners to give them a call at 865-215-2432 to claim your property

Paris James Long has a criminal history of DUI, drug charges, theft, and burglary in Knox County. He is being held at the Knox County jail on an $81,000 bond. As we mentioned, there are as many as five other suspects so more charges could be pending.

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