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Roane County property assessor candidate J.T. Woods shot himself in the head at Property Assessor Teresa Kirkham’s house Thursday morning.
He was later pronounced dead at Roane Medical Center.
Woods was 56.
Kingston police called his death a suicide as a result of the self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Assistant Police Chief Gary Nelson said a note with the words “good bye everyone” was found in Woods’ vehicle.
The incident occurred outside Kirkham’s duplex condominium in the Brentwood neighborhood overlooking Watts Bar Lake. Kirkham was home at the time of the shooting.
“She never came out of the house,” Nelson said.
The reason Woods chose Kirkham’s place to shoot himself was unknown.
“He took that with him,” Nelson said.
Lisa Billings, who works for Kirkham, called 911 at 8:32 a.m. to report the incident.
Kingston police said CPR was performed on Woods, but efforts to revive him were unsuccessful.
After the shooting the road leading up to Kirkham’s Brentwood Way residence was blocked by a Kingston police vehicle and yellow crime scene tape.
“We had it roped off until we got the investigation done,” Nelson said.
Nelson said the gun Woods used to shoot himself was a Colt King Cobra .357.
Woods lived on Arsenault Crossing in Kingston.
Roane County Commissioner Bobby Collier, who lives on the same street, said Woods was a good neighbor.
Collier said he was out walking on Wednesday when Woods asked how he was doing and spoke about putting campaign signs out.
“I would have never suspected it,” Collier said, of Woods suicide.
Woods was one of four people initially running against Kirkham in the August election.
He said last year that he decided to run because he thought it was time for a change.
Woods worked for Kirkham in the property assessor’s office from Sept. 21, 2008, to Nov. 15, 2010.
Woods said his employment ended because he was laid off.
Kirkham said she fired him and produced an audio recording to back up her claim.
Kirkham did not answer calls for comment Thursday afternoon.
The initial log entry for dispatch gave some indication of the ensuing chaos of the morning.
GUNSHOT WOUND, 1010 BRENTWOOD WAY
KINGSTON VERIZON WIRELESS (number omitted)
SHOT HIS SELF IN HEAD
GUN IS LAYING BESIDE HIM
THEY ARE DOING CPR ON HIM
THEY HAVEN’T TOUCHED IT
THEY DIDN’T TOUCH THE GUN
DOING CHEST COMPRESSIONS
At 9:42 a.m., Medical Examiner William Bennett was called and was dispatched to Roane Medical Center, where Woods had been taken.