Former Knox School Board member Bill Phillips faces new charges

Former Knox County School Board member Bill Phillips faces new charges

Bill Phillips (source: Knox County Sheriff's Office) Bill Phillips (source: Knox County Sheriff's Office)

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A former Knox County School Board member who has had several brushes with the law was arrested Wednesday morning after a fight with his wife.

Bill Phillips, 48, is accused of trying to smother his wife, Karen Phillips, with a pillow.

He is being held in the Knox County Detention Facility on charges of aggravated assault by strangulation and domestic assault.

Knox County deputies say they were sent to the Phillips home on Wood Road after someone called 911 and then hung up. 

Phillips told officers everything was fine, that his wife had made a mistake and was just trying to dial 411. 

When officers talked to Karen Phillips, 46, however, they learned a fight led to him trying to smother her with a pillow. She was able to get away by biting his arm. 

She also said she was cut after grabbing a knife to defend herself.

Phillips was arrested numerous times on various charges, including domestic assault, vandalism, acquisition of a controlled substance by fraud, and identity theft.

Phillips was arrested in 2009 for assaulting his wife and later pleaded guilty to that crime. He then resigned from the school board in January 2010.

He was arrested on March 30 of this year for allegedly violating an order of protection involving his stepson.

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