Security guard patrolling Tenn. high school on Halloween is shot, killed; suspect in custody

Wednesday, November 1st 2006, 10:21 pm
By: News On 6

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A Virginia man charged with killing a security guard who was patrolling a high school to prevent Halloween mischief was being questioned Wednesday in the death of another man whose car was stolen.

Carroll Lineberry, 39, was charged with murder Tuesday night in the death of guard Russell B. Kocur, also 39. Lineberry was being held on $750,000 bond.

Kocur told dispatchers he was checking on a vehicle with Virginia plates in the school parking lot and a man who appeared intoxicated, Knox County Sheriff Tim Hutchison said.

Kocur, who was not armed, then told dispatchers he had been shot, and officers found him on the ground with a gunshot wound in the back. He died in an ambulance.

The sheriff said Lineberry drove off from the school in Kocur's cruiser. Authorities said the man attempted to ram a cruiser, fought with officers and was shocked with a Taser before being apprehended.

The car left at the school was registered to Neil Hutton, 75, of Galax, Va., about 175 miles east of Knoxville, investigators said. Police in Virginia checked Hutton's home and found him dead with stab wounds and blunt force trauma to the head, Hutchison said. They believe Hutton was killed sometime between Sunday and Tuesday.

Authorities said they believe Lineberry, also of Galax, killed Hutton, stole his car, then wound up at the school. Hutton's car had a flat tire, and Hutchison said Lineberry might have been trying to fix it in the school parking lot. He may have thought he was caught when the security guard approached him, Hutchinson said.

"I don't think he really had a motive at that point. I don't know other than he was cornered and thought he was caught by a police officer," said Hutchinson.

Charges against Lineberry of capital murder, robbery and grand larceny likely will be filed in Virginia in connection with the Hutton killing, Galax police chief Rick Clark said in a statement Wednesday.

Lineberry told authorities he was homeless. He has a lengthy criminal record that includes breaking and entering and assault.

It was not clear whether Lineberry had an attorney. He could not be reached for comment because he was being held in jail Wednesday.