Commissioner Keener charged with domestic assault

Apr. 30, 2013 @ 11:56 AM

Sevier County Commissioner Jimmy Ray Keener was arrested Monday for an incident of domestic assault that occurred Sunday.

Keener, 57, of 1261 Old Red Lane, Sevierville, said the incident occurred during the process of separation and divorce.

Sheriff Ron Seals said Keener, 10th District (Dupont area) commissioner, allegedly pushed his wife, Marjorie, multiple times in the back during an argument. According to the sheriff's office arrest report, the shoves resulted in injuries — bruising, red marks and swelling — which were photographed.

Marjorie Keener sought treatment at a LeConte Medical Center, where she called the Sheriff's Office, the report says.

"We received a call from the hospital the night before last," Seals said Tuesday. "We went to the hospital and took reports and she got warrants."

Keener, who also works as transportation coordinator for the Sevier County School System, prepared a statement regarding the incident.

"This is part of a prolonged process of a marital separation and divorce," Keener said Tuesday morning by phone. "I did not hurt my wife. In this type of proceeding there are two sides to every story."

He was released on $500 bond after being held for the state minimum 12 hours, Seals said.

Keener has represented the 10th District since 2002 and has been with the school system since 2007. A Freemason, he also serves as Worshipful Master at Sevier Lodge No. 334 F&AM in Seymour, and as president of Masonic Officers District 20.

rhargett@themountainpress.com