Suspect Arrested, Charged in Chickering Dr. Murder

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An Arkansas man is now charged in the December 7th murder of James Blaine Divine, III. According to Jackson police, Randall Edward Secrease, 45, of Harrisburg, AR, is charged with first degree murder, arson, tampering with evidence and theft of property in the case. He is scheduled to be arraigned Friday at 8:00 a.m. in Jackson City Court. On Monday, police followed up on a report that Divine had been missing since the December 7 fire at his home. Police contacted fire officials to see if they had determined the cause of the fire. Fire officials responded and then notified police that a body was inside the burned structure. The body was sent to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Nashville where it was positively identified as Divine and the cause of death was ruled homicide due to multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma. According to investigators, on December 7, Secrease, and a 33-year-old Hardin County woman, were at Divine’s house at 166 Chickering Road. The woman and Divine were friends and Secrease is the woman’s boyfriend. At some point there was reportedly an argument between Secrease and the woman, which led to Secrease assaulting her. Investigators believe that when Divine came to her aid, Secrease turned his anger towards him. Secrease then struck Divine with a stick and stabbed him multiple times with a knife causing fatal injuries. Secrease is then accused of setting fire to the house with Divine’s body inside and taking Divine’s 1990 Plymouth Voyager. After allegedly driving the van to Memphis, Secrease allegedly set it on fire, Sunday. Jackson police said they developed a lead on Secrease’s location and contacted Millington police. He was taken into custody Wednesday morning around 4:00 a.m. at the Millington Inn. An investigation by the Jackson Fire Department and the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance Division of Fire Prevention- Bomb and Arson Section concluded and confirmed that the fire was intentionally set.

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