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Alleged vandals get ‘day in court’ Postponed


Mike Nassios, beside podium, attorney for vandalism suspect Tyler Crone addresses Judge Andrew Jackson VI during a preliminary hearing for Crone and fellow FHS student Mitch Kleiber in Knox County Third Sessions Felony Court Tuesday, Dec. 1. Andrea- Alan Sloan/farragutpress
The unavailability of one attorney has delayed criminal proceedings for two Farragut High School seniors charged with one count each of felony vandalism at Bearden High School.

A preliminary hearing for defendants Tyler Crone, 18, and Mitch Kleiber, 18, was scheduled in Knox County Third Sessions Felony Court Tuesday morning, Dec. 1.

Appearing before Judge Andrew Jackson VI, Mike Nassios, attorney for Crone, and Andrea Mohr, a self-described “associate” for Kleiber’s attorney, Gregory P. Isaacs, got Jackson’s blessing to reschedule the hearing for Feb. 10.

Why? “I think … the other lawyer [Isaacs] had a conflict with a case, he couldn’t be here today,” Nassios said after the rescheduling. “We agreed to the continuance. We’ll see if we can work something out in the case.”


Crone and Kleiber, along with a 17-year-old FHS student also charged with felony vandalism, allegedly defaced BHS property — including the school’s Memorial Gardens — causing an estimated $6,000 worth of damage Oct. 8.

The vandalism happened just one day prior to the annual Farragut versus Bearden football game, which was played at BHS’s Bill Young Field — also defaced.

Kleiber has admitted some level of culpability, having written a letter to Knox County Schools, also distributed to BHS and FHS administrators, expressing remorse for his actions.

Issacs said Kleiber was suspended through the remainder of fall semester and required to perform 100 hours community service, as determined at a KCS disciplinary hearing Oct. 21.

But Kleiber denies defacing the Memorial Gardens — expressed in the letter and through Isaac’s statements.

Crone has made no known public statements, and Nassios has declined further comment.

Preliminary hearing will determine “probable cause,” which if established would advance the case to a Grand Jury. Otherwise the case would be dismissed, notwithstanding a settlement between prosecution and defense, with the

court’s blessing.

If reaching the Grand Jury and “probable cause” is established, the next step would be a criminal trial.

 

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