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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Department of Justice

United States Attorney William C. Killian Eastern District of Tennessee


Jesse R. Mathews Is Charged With Murder of Chattanooga Police Sergeant Tim Chapin

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - A federal grand jury in Chattanooga returned a 14-count indictment on April 26, 2011, against Kathleen Mathews, 57, of Asheville, N. Car., Rachel Mathews, 21, of Asheville, N. Car., Ray Vance Mathews, 50, of Asheville, N. Car., and James David Poteete, 26, of Antioch, Tenn., for conspiracy and obstruction of justice, being accessories after the fact, misprision of felonies, and related firearms charges. The defendants have not yet been arraigned on the charges.

The indictment alleges that Kathleen, Rachel, and Ray Vance Mathews, and James Poteete, obstructed justice by concealing firearms stolen and possessed by Jesse Mathews; acted as accessories after the fact to armed robberies committed by Jesse Mathews in the Colorado Springs area; and attempted to conceal those crimes by harboring Jesse Mathews. The indictment further alleges that the four tampered with evidence related to crimes committed by Jesse Mathews; that Kathleen and Ray Vance Mathews provided firearms to Jesse Mathews, a known felon; and that Kathleen Mathews, a felon herself, knowingly possessed firearms and ammunition.

If convicted, these defendants face a maximum term of 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and a term of three years of Supervised Release for each of the obstruction charges (Counts One, Twelve, Thirteen, and Fourteen). They face a maximum term of 15 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and a term of three years of Supervised Release on Count Three, being accessories after the fact to the use of a firearm during a robbery. The maximum punishment for Counts Two, Eight, Nine, Ten, and Eleven, for accessories after the fact to robbery, providing firearms to a convicted felon (Kathleen and Ray Vance Mathews), and being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition (Kathleen Mathews), respectively, carry a term of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, and three years of Supervised Release. Count Seven, accessories after the fact to the crime of being a felon in possession of a firearm have a maximum term of five years in prison, $250,000 fine, and three years of Supervised Release. Finally, Counts Four, Five, and Six, Misprision of a Felony, each carry a maximum prison term of three years, $250,000 fine, and one year of Supervised Release.

“These indictments resulted from extensive cooperation and diligent work by the city, county, state and federal agencies. We truly appreciate their efforts,” said U.S. Attorney Bill Killian. This indictment is the result of an investigation by the Chattanooga Police Department, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Steve Neff and Chris Poole will represent the United States.

Members of the public are reminded that an indictment constitutes only charges and that every person is presumed innocent until their guilt has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

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