A Madisonville man is facing charges after he allegedly pulled a knife on a Food City employee Feb. 13.

Vonore Police Det. Cory Fritts said officers went to the store on Highway 411 and were told that a man later identified as John Michael Newman had pulled a knife when confronted about stealing produce.

The store management said Newman had allegedly concealed three packs of tenderloin and five packs of New York strip steaks on his person.

An employee said she confronted Newman about the items, but he refused to give them back and walked out of the store. The employee said she followed Newman out of the store and into the parking lot where he flipped open a knife and reportedly said, “(Expletive), you don’t want to follow me.”

The employee said Newman then got into a red truck and left. The employee got the license plate number of the truck and officers were able to get a name and address for Newman.

Fritts said he and other officers went to Newman’s home on Feb. 16 and talked to Newman who said he didn’t remember going to Food City on Feb. 13 and, if he had, he certainly hadn’t pulled a knife on anybody.

The next day, Fritts said he was able to review security footage from inside the store and saw Newman conceal the stolen meat and leave the store. The video also showed Newman wearing the same clothes he’d been wearing when he was interviewed Feb. 16.

Newman, 58, Old Store Road, Madisonville, is charged with aggravated assault and shoplifting.

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