Office of the District Attorney General
Sullivan County, TN
Assistant District Attorneys

Deputy District Attorney

J. Gene Perrin

Gene Perrin
Gene has been an Assistant District Attorney General for the Second Judicial District in Sullivan County since July of 1995. He serves as Deputy District Attorney General. As the District Attorney’s liaison attorney with the Second Judicial Drug Task Force, he works closely with the narcotics officers in Sullivan County. 

Immediately prior to his employment in the Office of the District Attorney General, Gene was a prosecutor in Central Florida for nine years prosecuting in the Narcotics and Career Criminal Division of the State Attorney’s Office for the 15th Circuit. Gene is a frequent lecturer at the TNDAGC New Prosecutor’s School as well to law enforcement groups in the areas of Search and Seizure, Criminal Law, and Criminal Investigation. 

Gene received his undergraduate degree from Florida State University and his Doctor of Jurisprudence with honors from the University of Florida.

Division I

William B. Harper

William HarperWilliam received a Bachelor of Science degree from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia in 1991. He received his Juris Doctorate from the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary in 1994. William has been with the Sullivan County District Attorney’s Office since 2000 and is currently the head of Division I Criminal Court, a child abuse prosecutor, contributing editor of the office’s quarterly newsletter ‘Roll Call,’ and the former head of the Sex Offender Registry team. 

Prior to coming to the District Attorney’s office, William worked for six years as a staff attorney for Client Centered Legal Services in Southwest Virginia. In 2000 he received the statewide award for excellence in Health Law.

A semi-retired competitive runner, William has seven marathons to his credit including the 2006 Boston marathon. He now enjoys spending time with his wife and following his son on the travel baseball circuit.

J. Lewis Combs

Lewis CombsLewis is a native of Bluff City, Tennessee and a graduate of Sullivan East High School. He attended the University of Tennessee at Knoxville was a letterman for the University of Tennessee Football team. In 1982 he graduated with high honors and went on to attend the University of Tennessee Law School between 1982 and 1985.

In 1985, Lewis worked as an associate in the Kingsport firm of West & Rose, P.C. before going on to work for Governor Ned McWherter in 1986 as the Governor’s Representative for the First Congressional District. In 1990, Lewis went into private practice in association with the late Charles Crockett of Elizabethton. He joined the District Attorney's Office in 1994. He practices in Sullivan County Criminal Court and is lead attorney in the newly established Arson Task Force.

He is the son of Betty Combs and the late Jack L. Combs, Sr. Lewis is married with one son who is currently attending college.

Teresa A. Nelson
Teresa NelsonTeresa received her bachelor's degree from East Tennessee State University and her Juris Doctor from the University of Tennessee College of Law. Before coming to the District Attorney's Office in 1998, she worked at the law offices of Mark Slagle & Associates and Hunter, Smith & Davis. She currently serves in Criminal Court handling child abuse and other serious crime cases. Teresa serves on the  Sullivan County Child Protective Investigation Team and is assigned to the Child Fataliy Review Board.


 Kent L. Chitwood
Kent ChitwoodKent is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University and received his law degree from the University of Memphis in 1994. He was born and raised in Nashville, however, he and his family have lived in Sullivan County since 2001. Kent has attended numerous training seminars organized by the NDAA, NCDA and TNDAGC. He is also a frequent lecturer at the TNDAGC’s Prosecutors Training Academy.  Kent has been appointed to a three-year term as a Hearing Committee Member for the Board of Professional Responsibility for the First Disciplinary District.


 Emily Smith

Emily was appointed as an Assistant District Attorney on September 1, 2011. She is from Clinton, Tennessee and received her undergraduate degree from Harding University and her law degree from Pepperdine University School of Law. After graduation, Emily spent a year in India assisting in the prosecution of forced prostitution cases.

Division II

Julie R. Canter

Julie received her Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and Political Science from East Tennessee State University in 2002. In 2005, she received her law degree from Appalachian School of Law.  Julie was an intern with the District Attorney's office in 2003 before working as a law clerk in 2004.  In 2005, she was hired as a full time Assistant District Attorney. Julie currently serves as the division head for all child sexual and physical abuse prosecutions.  Julie also prosecutes sex offenses and violations of the sex offender registry in Division II of Criminal Court.  Julie is a member of Sullivan County's Child Protective Investigative Team and Child Fatality Review Team.  In addition to her role as a child abuse prosecutor, Julie plays an active role in animal cruelty and animal fighting investigations and prosecutions.  In 2011 Julie received the "Voices for Victims" award presented by the Tennessee Board of Probation and Parole. 




Andrea N. Black
Andrea BlackAndrea graduated from East Tennessee State University with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice in 2005. She then obtained her Juris Doctor from Appalachian School of Law in May 2009.  Before working in her current position as Assistant District Attorney in General Sessions and Juvenile Court, Andrea served as a Summer Intern in 2005 and 2007, and as a Summer Law Clerk in 2008. In 2009-2010, Andrea worked as an assistant Victim/Witness Coordinator.  

P. Michael Filetti
Mike received a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a Minor in History from East Tennessee State University in 2011.  He received his Juris Doctor from Appalachian School of Law in May, 2014.  Mike was an intern with the District Attorney’s office in the summer of 2012 and one of the office law clerks in 2013.  He joined the staff as an Assistant District Attorney in August of 2014.

Amber D. Massengill

DUI Division

M. Blake Watson
Andrea BlackBlake is a graduate of the University of Tennessee, and received his law degree from the University of Memphis in 2014. Blake served as Assistant District Attorney General as DUI prosecutor in the 8th District before joining the Sullivan County District Attorney's Office. Blake was honored with the Tennessee DUI Prosecutor of the Year Award and was runner up for the National Traffic Safety Prosecutor of the Year award in 2015. Blake regularly contributes to the Tennessee Traffic Safety DUI Newsletter, and has been published in the American Journal of Trial Advocacy.

Domestic Violence

Kaylin K. Render
Kaylin RenderKaylin graduated from Emory & Henry College in 1994 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in a Double Major of Political Science and German. In 1997, she graduated from Cumberland School of Law at Samford University with a Juris Doctor.  Kaylin began working with the District Attorney’s Office in Fall of 2005 as the Domestic Violence Prosecutor.

General Sessions

Joseph McMurray

Joe McMurray
Joe was appointed as an Assistant District Attorney on September 1, 2011. He is a native of Scott County, Virginia and received his undergraduate degree from James Madison University and his law degree from Charleston School of Law. Before joining the District Attorney's office, Joe was employed by the law office of Mike Carrico. Joe now serves as Division Head for General Sessions Court.

Josh D. Parsons
Josh Parsons
Josh graduated from Tennessee High School in Bristol in 1996. He then attended the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 2000.  In 2003, Josh received his Juris Doctor from the Cumberland School of Law at Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. Josh has been working as a prosecuting attorney in various parts of Tennessee since he obtained his licence in 2004. He has been working with the Second Judicial District since 2009.

Emily B. Hutchins
Emily joined the District Attorney's Office in December, 2013. Emily graduated from East Tennessee State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Social Science in 2009.  She then received her Juris Doctor from Emory University School of Law in 2013, where she was a competitor and coach in the Emory Moot Court Society.  Before she was appointed as an Assistant District Attorney assigned to General Sessions and Juvenile Court, Emily worked in the District Attorney’s office as a summer intern in 2011 and as the summer law clerk in 2012.

News and Events