SWEETWATER, Tenn. — Monroe County authorities said Tuesday a tip helped investigators charge a man accused in a 46-year-old homicide.

John Constant Jr. was shot and killed in mid-March 1973.

John Raymond Constant Jr
John Raymond Constant Jr.
WBIR (Submitted)

A Monroe County grand jury this month indicted Max Benson Calhoun for first-degree murder in his death.

Tenth Judicial District Attorney General Stephen Crump held a news conference Tuesday after he said new evidence uncovered by the Cold Case Task Force Unit led to the arrest. He said Constant was shot multiple times. 

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Calhoun, who's accused in his death, is a resident of McMinn County, according to Crump. He said he was arrested there before being moved to the Monroe County jail. 

Listed as a witness for the prosecution is Calvin Rockholt, lead investigator for the 10th Judicial District, which includes Monroe County.

Crump said there are roughly 60 unsolved homicides the county.

One witness, according to Crump, came forward because they were suffering a terminal illness and did not know if they'd get another chance to share the information they knew. 

"I don't ever want a family to think that we forgot that something bad happened to them," Crump said. 

The whole arrest is something Calhoun's stepson Terry Brackett says caught him off guard.

"I left work. I was just flying over there, of course, because this just shocked me," Brackett said. "I don't understand this on something that old... with what they have, we're just waiting for some information."

The DA says while the case is getting a lot of attention, his office is focused on getting some closure for everyone involved.

"I don't know if it's the most celebrated in Monroe County... or the most infamous... but it certainly is to the Constant family, and that's the way we're going to approach it," Crump said.