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Newport Police: Man arrested after slashing woman's tires, claiming he 'likes helping women in distress'

In the incident report, police made note of several items they found in his car -- including rope, condoms, a leather belt with a pad attached, and masking tape.

NEWPORT, Tenn. — A man is facing several charges after Newport police said he slashed a woman's tire and tried to pawn off items he stole from a convenience store.

According to the incident report from the Newport Police Department, a woman called police after finding one of her tires had been slashed at a convenience store on the evening of Dec. 30.

The woman said she went inside the store to use the bathroom and went back to her car to find a flat tire and a man standing next to it.

Police said the man, identified as 53-year-old Lee Keirsey from Knoxville, asked the woman if she needed help and that he "likes helping women in distress." The woman told him her father was coming to help, and said Keirsey drove off. 

After the woman called police, officers spotted the man's vehicle at a pawn shop around West Broadway. They said they found another woman inside the vehicle who told them Keirsey was inside the store.

Police went inside and detained Keirsey, putting him in handcuffs. They said he admitted to slashing the woman's tire because "he was broke and did not have any cash."

Police said Keirsey gave them consent to search his vehicle, and in the incident report they made note of several items they found inside -- including rope, condoms, a leather belt with a pad attached to it, masking tape and a change of clothes.

The woman inside Keirsey's car told police she had been walking down Cosby Highway in front of another pawn shop when Keirsey stopped her and asked if she needed a ride. Police said the woman agreed to get in the car after Keirsey told her he could take her to North Carolina. According to the report, Keirsey said he needed to "go get some gas money" before stopping at the pawn shop.

After arresting Keirsey, police said they found a gram of what they believed was cocaine wrapped in a piece of plastic. They said he also took a pair of sunglasses and gloves from the convenience store, saying he appeared to be trying to pawn the items before officers detained him.

Officers arrested Keirsey, charging him with public intoxication, vandalism, theft, and possession of drugs. He was taken to the Cocke County Sheriff's Office jail annex on a $15,000 bond.

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