KINGSPORT, TN (WJHL-TV) – A shoplifting case in Kingsport escalated when one of the suspects pulled a knife on store employees.
On Wednesday night, loss prevention officers at the Target store located on East Stone Drive in Kingsport observed a female suspect, later identified as Kansas Sayler Evans from Kingsport, tampering with theft deterrent security devices attached to merchandise in the electronics isle. They also observed her concealing merchandise in her purse, placing additional merchandise in a shopping cart, then attempting to leave the store without paying for any of the merchandise.
When the loss prevention officers attempted to detain Ms. Evans at the exit, a struggle ensued, at which time she physically assaulted two Target employees. During this altercation, a second suspect approached the exit. This accomplice, later identified as Andrew C. Gragg from Mt. Carmel, produced a knife and ordered the employees at knife-point to release Evans.
In fear of getting stabbed, the loss prevention officers complied and released Ms. Evans. Both suspects walked to the far end of the parking lot and fled the scene in a gold sedan with a compact spare tire on the front driver’s side of the vehicle. Kingsport Police were called to the scene and a review of surveillance video footage and statements from multiple witnesses confirmed the employees’ account of the incident.
Patrol officers soon located the vehicle and conducted a traffic stop on East Stone Drive near Pinebrook Drive. Both suspects were positively identified and taken into custody. At the time of her arrest, Ms. Evans was also in possession of several small white prescription pills.
Andrew Gragg was charged with two counts of Aggravated Assault and Kansas Evans was charged with Theft over $500 (Felony Shoplifting), two counts of Simple Assault, and Simple Possession of a Legend Drug without a Prescription. Both suspects were transported to the Kingsport City Jail.
Gragg remains incarcerated in the Kingsport City Jail in lieu of a $4,000 bond as set by the presiding magistrate. Evans’ bond was set at $3,500, but she has since been transferred to the Sullivan County Jail in Blountville, TN.
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