Ex-manager of Highland Games charged with attempted murder

September 29, 2021 GMT

NEWLAND, N.C. (AP) — The former office manager of the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games was arrested by state law enforcement officials and faces charges including three counts of attempted first-degree murder, authorities said.

Avery County Sheriff Kevin Frye said Thomas Dewey Taylor, 43, is being held in the county jail on charges of possession of a weapon of mass destruction in addition to the attempted murder charge, news outlets reported.

Taylor was charged Monday night by the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation, but a spokeswoman referred additional questions on Tuesday to Frye’s office. The sheriff said he couldn’t provide more information because the SBI brought the charges.

Taylor’s arrest was connected to an incident at the office in Linville, said Stephen Quillin, president of the Grandfather Mountain Highland Games. Quillin said Taylor was dismissed as office manager in August.


Taylor is jailed on a $500,000 bond and it’s not known if he has an attorney. He’s scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday.

The Grandfather Mountain Highland Games resumed in July after missing 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It features traditional Gaelic entertainment and is also known for its Scottish-style athletic competitions, including the caber toss in which a contestant throws a 16- to 20-foot pole.