Thomas Kenneth “T.K.” Owens, who, in 2012, sought the Democratic nomination to represent Tennessee in the U.S. Senate, was arrested early this morning on charges that he solicited the murder of his uncle Earnest Widby, who works as a bailiff for the Carter County Sheriff’s Department.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation alleged that Owens met with an individual at Bailey’s Sports Bar in Johnson City and gave the person $500 and a photograph of the deputy. He was arrested shortly afterward.
Carter County Sheriff Chris Mathes said $2,500 was offered to complete the hit.
Mathes said he would rather details about the motive come out in court, but did mention there possibly were “spiritually motivated” disagreements between them.
Owens is being held at the Washington County Detention Center on a $100,000 bond. He was scheduled for arraignment today.
More on this story as it develops.