Suspect indicted for capital murder in stabbing death of special - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Suspect indicted for capital murder in stabbing death of special needs man

John Grimes (Source: Smith County Jail) John Grimes (Source: Smith County Jail)
Tony Jeter (Family Photo) Tony Jeter (Family Photo)
TYLER, TX (KLTV) - On February 27, a Smith County Grand Jury indicted 25-year-old John Grimes of Tyler on a charge of capital murder in the death of a 65-year-old mentally disabled man.

Just after 11 p.m. on November 30, 2013, Tony Jeter was found dead at his home on Bow Street by his half-brother Charles Sanchez.

Sanchez visited Jeter daily, making sure his special needs brother had everything he needed before bed at night.

"Tony called me about 5:30 p.m." Sanchez said. "He asked me if I had already come by and I said, no I would come by later. He said why don't you fix that ham I gave you and U said I'll fix it for you and bring it over tonight."

But when Sanchez arrived at the home just after 11 P.M., he said he knew something wasn't right.

"I saw the two front doors open and I went on in and found Tony on the floor."

Sanchez said his younger brother had been stabbed three times in the neck and that his wallet and money were missing.

Tyler police believe Grimes killed Jeter sometime Saturday afternoon before fleeing the scene.

Jeter's neighbors said it couldn't have happened to a more generous person.

"He would stop people," said neighbor Ross Pettigrew. "He would see people walking without a place to go, and say I've got this, y'all are welcome. I ain't got much, but y'all can come in."

Sanchez believes his half-brother, who spent the last 15 years volunteering for the Salvation Army, was likely taken advantage of because of his mental condition.

"Tony was a happy go lucky guy," Sanchez said. "He never met anybody he didn't make friends with. He had too good of a heart, too good of a heart."

But even in tragedy, Sanchez said he can at least find some closure.

"Tony is in a better place now and I think the laws of the land will take care of the situation," he said. "I know [Grimes] is not going to hurt anybody else."

According to an arrest warrant affidavit, Grimes borrowed a bus passenger's cell phone at the bus station in downtown Tyler. He reportedly told the passenger and a person on the borrowed phone that two men tried to rape him and he stabbed one of them in the back of the neck.

Police said Grimes told them he and Jeter were inside the home on Bow Street and Jeter refused to let Grimes leave when he refused to engage in homosexual relations. Detectives said in the affidavit Grimes believed Jeter had a gun, but never saw one.

Grimes remains in the Smith County Jail on $1 million bond.

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