Crimetracker: Murder charge stems from sale of illegal drugs in Alcoa

ALCOA, Tenn. (WVLT) – Alcoa police detectives arrested a Loudon woman Thursday on a charge of second-degree murder following a 2011 death that stemmed from illegal distribution of prescription medication.

A Blount County grand jury returned a sealed indictment on Monday against Kellie Geneva Abert, 43, Loudon, on a charge of second-degree murder. Alcoa Police Detectives Kris Sanders and Jason Ewing arrested Abert on Thursday night with the assistance of the Loudon County Sheriff’s Office.

The case against Abert began with a death on August. 4, 2011 in a room at Hampton Inn, at the 100 block of International Ave. in Alcoa. Officers responded to the call of an unresponsive male in the hotel, and found 39-year-old William R. Lawson of Greenback dead upon their arrival.

A preliminary investigation of the crime scene and an interview was initiated with Abert, Lawson’s sister and a witness to the death. At that point, Sanders said the cause of death was determined to be suspicious in nature. Detectives spent the next year and a half pursuing an in-depth investigation into the case. It was determined that Lawson’s death was the result of illegal distribution of a Schedule II controlled substance (prescription drugs).

Abert was being held at the Blount County Jail in lieu of a $100,000 bond pending a hearing in Blount County Circuit Court.

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