Hamblen County man faces charges for second degree murder after stabbing

MORRISTOWN (WATE) – A Hamblen County man is in custody after deputies said he stabbed his stepfather and fled with a family friend.

Jesse Merriman, 22, has been charged with second degree murder. Lindsey Williamson, 39 has been charged with criminal responsibility for second degree murder.

Merriman’s stepfather, Steve Thompson, 44, died from injuries sustained after he was stabbed in the chest and in the heart area.

Hamblen County Sheriff’s Office said they received a call about a domestic disturbance and stabbing on the 7300 block of East Andrew Johnson Highway.

Deputies said it is believed that the victim, Steve Thompson was in a verbal and physical altercation with his wife, Abby Thompson.

During the argument, according to deputies, Steve Thompson grabbed his wife at which point Merriman stabbed his stepfather and fled the residence with Williamson, a family friend. The Sheriff’s Office says the couple was arguing about relationship issues.

Detectives and patrolmen with the Hamblen County Sheriff’s Department said they searched through the night.

Deputies said they located Merriman Friday morning at a friends house on the 400 block of Mear Way in White Pine.

“We believe the location where Mr. Merriman was found at, the people in that residence had no idea what had transpired previously,” said Public Information Officer Carrie McCann.

Williamson was arrested at her residence first, around 6 a.m. Friday. At this point, investigators say drugs or alcohol are not involved.

“We don’t have any previous arrest history for domestic violence at this location,” added McCann.

Merriman is being held on a $125,000 bond. Williamson’s bond was set at $100,000.

Both Merriman and Williamson’s arraignment is scheduled for Monday, February 16 at 8:30 a.m.

Investigators tell us Merriman has no criminal history in Hamblen County, however Williamson was charged in 2005 for speeding and driving on a revoked license along with two other minor charges.

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