Response filed in suit against pastor, wife & deacon

Family Chapel Church of God in Pigeon Forge. (Source: Kyle Grainger, WVLT)

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A Pigeon Forge pastor, his wife and a church deacon have filed a response to a lawsuit filed that they assaulted a man attending their church.

The pastor and his wife say the events that Andrew Byrd described in his February 15th lawsuit didn't happen that way.

Joel Arwood and Theresa Arwood admit they invited Byrd to their church, but deny physically assaulting Byrd and pulling out his tooth. They claim self defense from Byrd.

In a counterclaim by Theresa Arwood, she says Byrd "pulled out a knife to inflict serious bodily harm to the Counter-Plaintiff and other attending church members."

Her counterclaim says that Byrd made verbal threats and Shields and Arwood defended themselves while Byrd made attempts to strike the men.

The defendants are asking the case be dismissed.

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