Family members assaulted, threatened by cousin says “I’ll burn this house down” and actually tries

43-year-old Shephard Harkness was charged with domestic assault and aggravated arson when he threw a Molotov cocktail at his cousin’s house after he threatened them by saying “I’ll burn this house down. You don’t know who you’re f–king with,” per report.

On May 5th, Deputy Mitchell responded to a simple assault at 6529 Cherry Bark Drive. Shephard Harkness was located and transported to 201 Poplar. Harkness stated that he had a verbal argument with his cousin Tracee Penchion and uncle Robert Penchion. Harkness then said that he left the residence. Detective Dotson interviewed victims Tracee and David Dorsey about the incident earlier, where Harkness pushed Tracee down and told her “I will burn this house down. You don’t know who you’re fucking with!”

Shepherd Harkness (SCSO)
Shepherd Harkness (SCSO)

Robert Penchion showed up at the residence to calm Harkness down, but Harkness pushed him down and threatened to burn the house down again. Then Tracee stated that Harkness left the residence and that’s when she called the Sheriff’s Office and filed the earlier report.

David Dorsey heard of the earlier incident so he decided to come to stay with his cousin Tracee. They were sitting on the couch when they heard glass break from the back room of the house. They then saw Harkness throwing a glass bottle through the living room window. Flames started from the back of the house so they exited from the front where David witnessed Harkness running. David yelled at him, and Harkness stopped and replied by saying “suck my dick!”

During the investigation, David and Tracee told police that Harkness is also their cousin. Deputies followed Harkness to 4136 Tunbridge Place where they saw him exiting his vehicle at a relative’s home. Harkness ran from the deputies once he saw them. Shelby County Fire department found one Molotov cocktail still intact which they will test the contents for an accelerant.

Shephard Harkness was arrested and charged with domestic assault and aggravated arson. His bond was set at $50,000.

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