Thursday October 3, 2013

Workers at the Pontiki mining complex in Martin County have been told the surface mine and coal prep plant will close by the end of the year.

Alliance Resource Partners says its subsidiary, Excel Mining issued WARN notices to employees on Friday, according to a news release from the company.

The mining complex employs approximately 142 workers.

The company says it plans to continue operations at the complex until early December to fulfill commitments under existing sales contracts at which time the mine is expected to cease production.

_____


Kentucky State Police were on the scene of a death investigation last night on Ben House Road in Clay County late Wednesday night.

Officials say a man was found dead inside his home.

The Clay County Coroner says that 58-year-old Carl "Duke" House was pronounced dead at 6:46 p.m. on Wednesday.

While the coroner isn't releasing a cause of death, he does call it an apparent homicide.

Police have released few details about the investigation so far.


_____


A Johnson County woman who killed her boyfriend in 2010 will not be eligible for early parole.

Officials say Donna Wheeler will not become eligible for parole until she has served 85 percent of her 14 1/2 year sentence.

Wheeler asked for earlier parole saying she was a victim of domestic violence when she killed James Sparks.

On April 30th, 2010, Wheeler shot Sparks in the back as he was leaving her home.

She remains in the Western Kentucky Correctional Complex.

_____


Back in 2010, A Leslie County man, Norman Adams, was found dead and five men were charged in connection to his murder.

One of the men, Harold Pennington, has since been found not guilty.

Police said Adams was beat to death and that the men tried to make it look like an ATV accident.

One of the defendants, Millard Miniard, was in court Wednesday morning.

Miniard entered an alford plea to manslaughter charges earlier this year.

That means he pleaded guilty to the charges due to mounting evidence against him without admitting guilt.

The deal meant he would serve 12 years in prison.

_____


A former school building in Hazard is set to be torn down.

Dennis Wooton Elementary School was closed at the end of last academic year.

Perry County School District Finance Chair Jody Maggard says it has become a target for damage.

The board has not yet decided what to do with the site.

Even with the board's approval, the plan to tear the building down still needs approval from the state.