A Tellico Plains man was arrested Monday afternoon, charged with holding a family of five against their will and threatening to kill them.

Madisonville Patrolman Dylan Bledsoe said it was around 4 p.m. when he went to do a welfare check at a house on Hunters Cove Drive on a call of people being held hostage.

Bledsoe said the door to the house was open when he arrived and he was met by a man named B.J. Carpenter. The officer asked Carpenter if everything was okay and if he was alone.

Bledsoe said Carpenter was alone, but then a man, whom Bledsoe knew as Jeffrey Holcomb, walked into the front hallway. Bledsoe said he then handed Carpenter a phone and told him to call his mother and tell her everything was all right.

According to the warrant, Carpenter did this and handed the phone back. Bledsoe said he then told Carpenter to call if he needed anything else and returned to his car, but before he could leave he saw Carpenter in the house make a discreet hand gesture toward him.

Bledsoe said he returned to the house, knocked on the door and had Holcomb step outside. He then spoke to Carpenter, who said Holcomb needed to leave. Bledsoe said he told Holcomb to leave and he did.

When Holcomb was almost out of sight, Bledsoe said Carpenter told him that Holcomb had been holding him, his wife and their three children in the house against their will and had taken their cellphones.

Carpenter claimed Holcomb had assaulted him and said he would cut them up and put their bodies in a hole he had made in the floor of the house. Carpenter said he had made the hand gesture because when he went back in the house Holcomb allegedly told Carpenter he was dead and he pulled out a knife. Carpenter said he thought he was going to die until he heard Bledsoe knock again.

Bledsoe said he went and found Holcomb not far away and arrested him.

Holcomb, 36, Graham Loop, Tellico Plains, was charged with aggravated assault and five counts of false imprisonment.

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