Search underway in Loudon County for kidnapping suspect

By WHITNEY HOLMES 6 News Anchor/Reporter

LOUDON (WATE) -- Law enforcement officers are looking for a kidnapping suspect in the area.

Christopher EllisAccording to the Loudon County Sheriff's Office, a suspect entered an Atlanta home telling the resident, Chapman Parker, he had a gun. The suspect then took a knife from the kitchen counter and proceeded to tie up the victim with a rope.

At first, investigators had a hard time believing Parker's tale of a wild ride that ended in Loudon County, but now they believe he's telling the truth.

Parker, 25, told investigators he was relaxing in his living room in Atlanta, downloading music, Friday around 3:30 p.m. when a stranger burst in.

Investigators believe that man is Christopher Alan Ellis, 31, who is also a suspect in a bank robbery in Owensboro, Ky.

"He takes the knife, and he ties the victim up by his hands and feet and tapes his mouth," said Detective Jason Smith, with the Loudon County Sheriff's Department.

According to Smith, Parker told investigators Ellis put him in the trunk of his car and drove around Atlanta, even picking up a friend along the way.

Later, Ellis untied Parker and let him sit up front.

All the while, the victim tried to stay on friendly terms with Ellis.

"They stopped and got beer and cigarettes," said Detective Smith. "The victim said he didn't smoke, but just to maintain friendliness he smoked the cigarettes."

Parker told deputies Ellis smoked crack in the car and also cleaned out his ATM account.

Around midnight, Ellis finally pulled over in a rural area of Loudon County and ran, off taking with him the Parker's knife and cell phone.

Smith said Parker's cell phone helped police identify Ellis and confirm the story.

"He said the suspect used his cell phone quite a few times," said the detective. "We contacted AT&T and used the form to be able to pull numbers he called."

Investigators were unable to track Ellis through GPS because the cell phone was turned off.

After the suspect ran off, Parker drove himself to the Loudon County Justice Center. He has minor injuries but is okay.

Ellis has family in the Sunbright area and a criminal history. He has a warrant out for his arrest for a September bank robbery in Owensboro, Ky.

Investigators also say Ellis cut himself on purpose while in Parker's house.

Atlanta police are processing the blood to see if it matches Ellis's.  

Once he's apprehended, Ellis could be charged with especially aggravated kidnapping.

Because Parker was taken against his will across state lines, the case may be turned over to the FBI.

Ellis is believed to be armed and dangerous. He is a white male, 31-years-old, 5'11" and 175 lbs. He has brown hair and eyes. He was born in Tennessee.

If you have any information call the Loudon County Sheriff's Department at (865) 986-4823.