Kingsport officer cleared in standoff shooting

KINGSPORT, Tenn. - The Kingsport police officer who shot Jeffrey Caldwell during a standoff in June has been cleared.

On Tuesday the grand jury found that Officer Joe Valentine used appropriate legal force when he shot Caldwell on June 11 while he was holding a roof tile.

Kingsport police say the 25-year-old created a threatening situation on the roof of a Watauga Street home when they came to serve a warrant back in June. During a standoff that lasted hours, police say Caldwell made repeated detailed threats to harm both the officers and himself.

"He did have a roof shingle, but he fashioned it in such a way and carried it in such a manner [that it was threatening] under the circumstances. In what he said, and the lighting, the officer reasonably and honestly believed that he had a weapon, was pointing it, and was about to fire it at him," said District Attorney Barry Staubus.

The grand jury also indicted Caldwell for assault against the officer during the incident. He's still in the Sullivan County jai without bond.

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