Wednesday November 5, 2014

ELECTION 2014

For complete Letcher County election results for Tuesday 11-4-14 CLICK HERE

TRAFFIC STOP RESULTS IN DRUG CHARGES

A Harlan County couple are arrested on drug charges after being stopped at a safety checkpoint. Benham police took Stephen Golden and Leann Coker into custody after finding a stash of various drugs and a large amount of money. Golden also faces DUI charges and both are at the Harlan County Detention Center.

RAPE CASE DISMISSED

Rape charges are dropped against a Floyd County man after a grand jury fails to indict him on grounds of insufficient evidence. David Patrick of Prestonsburg was accused last month of raping a neighbor after returning a borrowed item to her. Patrick contended the sex was consensual. He's been released from home incarceration.

MULTIPLE CHARGES FILED IN ONE CAR CRASH

A Floyd County crash leads to the driver being arrested on drug charges. Police say a car driven by Krista Garrett wrecked on the Big Branch of Bull Creek and when officers searched her car they found a bag with pills and drug paraphenalia. In addition to the drug charges Garrett is charged with DUI and leaving the scene of an accident.

DEATH PENALTY OFF THE TABLE

A Perry County judge denies a Commonwealth’s Attorney's petition to seek the death penalty in a murder case.  Court papers say Billie Caudill was intoxicated when her car crashed on Highway 15 near the Perry-Breathitt County line in July of 2013. The accident took the lives of Caudill's husband and 2 others. In the ruling the judge says because Caudill was indicted on a felony charge - not a capital offense - she can't face the death penalty. The Hazard Herald reports Caudill is due back in court November 20.

Tuesday November 4, 2014

HELPING PEOPLE KEEP WARM

2 Letcher County charities join forces to keep the needy warm with colder temperatures ahead. Grace Closet in Jenkins opened yesterday and is the work of God's Love From a Diaper Bag and Smile Faith Foundation. Each person is given three full outfits every month.

DOWN TO THE WIRE

Kentucky's US Senate candidates made whirlwind trips through the mountains on the day before voters head out to the polls. Incumbent republican Mitch McConnell visited Hazard and challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes made a stop in Pike County. The latest WKYT Herald-Leader Bluegrass Poll has McConnell with a 5 point lead over Grimes.

HEARING DELAYED FOR EX TEACHER

A detention hearing for a former teacher from Harlan County man accused of distributing child pornography is delayed until next week at the request of the man's attorney. Kevin Crider of Evarts remains in the custody of US Marshals. Court papers say Kentucky State Police were contacted by Harlan Independent Schools after learning of Crider's suspected inappropriate communication with students. He was indicted in July. Crider is due back in court November 13.

SMOOTHING OUT THE BUMPS

The state transportation cabinet grants a Floyd County city money to smooth out its streets. Prestonsburg's mayor Jerry Fannin says the $150,000 grant is being used right away to get road resurfacing done. Fannin says some streets are in such bad shape that they might need more than just resurfacing, but by and large a fresh coat of asphalt should make things smoother for drivers.

POT CHARGES FILED

A Harlan County man is arrested on suspicion he supplied marijuana to 2 13 year olds. Michael Howard of Loyall is held in the Harlan County Detention Center on $22,000 full cash bond. Police say the boys were found at Howard's home and both tested positive for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. Another unidentified person at Howard's home was also arrested on drug possession charges.

GET BACK TO CLASS

Registration is under way for the Spring semester at Big Sandy Community and Technical College. College administrators say students can choose between thousands of classes and a variety of programs that are completely online. Applications are accepted at the Prestonsburg, Pikeville and Mayo campus or online.

CITY RESPONDS TO WATER LAWSUIT

Leaders of one Knott County city being sued for unpaid water bills say they're waiting for some paperwork so they can take action on the legal action. Hindman's city council met Monday night and city attorney Jeremy Morgan told the council while the city has 20 days to respond to the lawsuit, Knott County Water hasn't yet delivered some requested information for the city to take action. The utility says both Hindman and Vicco owe around $200,000 each in unpaid bills.

MURDER TRIAL DELAYED

Trial is delayed for a Perry County woman accused in the deaths of 3 people in a one car crash. Court papers say Billie Caudill was intoxicated when her car crashed on Highway 15 near the Perry-Breathitt County line in July of 2013. The accident took the lives of Caudill's husband and 2 others. Commonwealth’s Attorney John Hansen filed paperwork to seek the death penalty.

CHARGES FILED IN ATTACK AND ROBBERY

A Harlan County man is arrested on suspicion he robbed and stabbed a man. Police say Robert Pace went to the Holly Point Apartments in Harlan to confront a man who Pace suspected of slashing his tires. Arrest papers say a physical confrontation ensued and Pace pulled a knife on the victim and made off with over $1000. Pace turned himself into police.

FIRE FORCES FAMILY FROM HOME

A house fire displaces a Wise County Virginia family. Investigators say when firemen arrived the home on Back Valley Road in Big Stone Gap was fully engulfed. The 2 adults and 3 children who lived there were away when the fire broke out and are now being helped by the Red Cross.

Monday November 3, 2014

HUNDREDS RAISED FOR AREA CHARITY

A Halloween fundraiser in Letcher County helps an organization making a difference at Christmastime. The benefit for "Letcher County Tree of Hope" was held at at the "Devil's Playground" haunted house presented by Brimstone in downtown Whitesburg. The two-day haunted house raised hundreds of dollars for the organization dedicated to providing toys and clothing to children in need around Christmas.

LET IT SNOW…

November came in with a blanket of white in Letcher County. Pine Mountain had around 4 inches of snow Saturday morning and workers got roads cleared and had to remove some tree branches. Officials warn drivers to remember winter driving techniques and allow extra time to get to destinations.

SBA LOANS NOW AVAILABLE

Flood-damaged areas in 6 counties including Knott, Floyd and Pike are eligible for low-interest loans from the US Small Business Administration. In August heavy rains and flash flooding washed out roads and forced people from their homes. Homeowners can apply for up to $200,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, and up to $40,000 to homeowners and renters to repair or replace personal property. Businesses and nonprofit organizations of any size may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, along with assets. Loan applications are accepted online through the SBA's website until December 29.

FIRE DESTROYS FISTY HOME

An unattended space heater is blamed for a fire in Knott County. The owner of the home in the Fisty community says he turned on the heater, got in the shower and 10 minutes later the house was ablaze. No one was hurt, but the home is a total loss.

METH LAB FOUND

An anonymous tip led Kentucky State Police to bust a meth lab in Pike County. Police say when they went to the Noe Creek Road home they found the meth lab in a bedroom. Samantha Smith and James Gross are under arrest on drug charges and two other people in the home were arrested but police haven't released their identities.

DRIVER HITTING SCHOOL BUS ARRESTED

A man wanted in a hit and run involving a school bus in Perry County is in custody.  Investigators say Gary Daniels side-swiped the bus then took off.  No one was injured in the crash. Police say Daniels was pulled over in Chavies and tried to flee but was arrested after a number of struggles with officers. Daniels has outstanding warrants in Leslie County and Clay Counties.

SUSPECTED BURGLARS IN CUSTODY

2 Floyd County men are arrested on suspicion in 2 burglaries. Court papers say Jonathan Robinette and Jeremy Thacker tried to break into a Rite Aid in Robinson Creek and stole thousands of dollars worth of equipment has been stolen from the Douglas Water Treatment Plant in the Mountain Water District. Police say the two may be connected with another burglary in Pike County.

CHILD PORNOGRAPHY INDICTMENT HANDED DOWN

A grand jury indicts a Wise County, Virginia man on production of and possession of child pornography charges. Police say in May they received a complaint against Jimmy Mullins of Pound and began an investigation which led to a search of his home 2 months later. In the evidence, police discovered a video of a juvenile in a pornography film.

CAR VS. BUILDING ACCIDENT

A woman driving her car into a Pike County building faces DUI and drug charges. Charging papers say Adrienne Lowe of Pikeville slammed into the Velocity Market on Hambley Boulevard and drove off. The Appalachain News Express reports Lowe was arrested at a nearby restaurant where she failed field sobriety tests. Police say they found marijuana and other pills in her car. Lowe was released on bond.

Friday October 31, 2014

MAN SHOT DURING ARGUMENT

A disagreement between a man and a woman at a Perry County home sends the man to UK Medical Center after being shot. Police say Kermit Shepherd went to the Slemp community home of Emily Dixon and as the two were arguing, Dixon demanded Shepherd leave and when he refused, she grabbed a shotgun and shot him in the leg. Dixon was taken to an area hospital for unknown injuries. State Police are investigating the incident and so far no charges have been filed.

MISBEHAVIOR RESULTS IN HIGHER BOND

A Floyd County man in court facing assault and resisting arrest charges ends up with his bond raised from $12,500 to $150,000 because of his actions in front of the judge. Court records say Johnathan Endicott kept staring at his girlfriend even after the bailiffs and the judge told him to stop. The Floyd County Times reports Assistant County Attorney Tyler Greene made a motion to raise Endicott’s bond and the judge agreed. A grand jury is reviewing the

case for possible indictment.

INDICTMENT IN 2013 MURDER

A Harlan County man is indicted on charges he stabbed a man. Court papers say in 2013 Brian Owens attacked Ricky Turner at a building in downtown Harlan. Turner had to be airlifted to a Tennessee hospital and recovered from the stab wound. Owens is due in court next month.

RECOGNITION FOR STUDENT PERFORMANCE

4 schools in Wise County, Virginia are honored by the state as Title 1 Distinguished schools.  Coeburn Primary, Powell Valley Primary, St. Paul Elementary and Wise Primary were recognized for meeting all state and federal accountability requirements for two consecutive years and achieving pass rates in standard of learning tests in reading and mathematics at the 60th percentile or higher. 36 schools statewide received the recognition.

MAN CHARGED IN DRUG STING

An undercover drug buying operation results in the arrest of a Floyd County man. Police say Ricky Williams of Grethel sold a confidential informant 3 prescription painkiller pills for $100. Williams faces felony trafficking of controlled substance charges.

MURDER TRIAL SET FOR DECEMBER

A trial date is set for a Harlan County man accused in a 2011 murder. Timothy Turner will be in court December 2 in connection with the death of Stephen Gibson, who was found dead by police doing a welfare check at his home. Attorneys had a final pre trial conference yesterday.

TRASH TROUBLES

Perry County may be soon shopping for a new garbage hauler. The Hazard Herald reports Judge-Executive Denny Ray Noble says said the county might terminate its contract with Waste Connections, Inc. due to a significant drop in garbage pickup. It stems from complaints brought by residents of an area near Viper where trash isn't being collected. County Attorney John Carl Shackelford says the court could issue a 30-day notice to the company over a breach of contract.

THEFT SUSPECT EXTRADITED

A woman from Ohio is being brought back to Floyd County on charges she stole thousands of dollars from a man. Arrest papers say in 2013 Gena Cavins of Columbus Ohio took $25,000 from the Floyd County man who hid the money in envelopes underneath his bed.  Cavins is expected to appear in court next week.

MC CONNELL MOVES AHEAD OF GRIMES

Republican Senator Mitch McConnell widens his lead in the latest Bluegrass Poll, conducted for WKYT-TV, the Lexington Herald-Leader, the Louisville Courier-Journal, and WHAS-TV. The incumbent bests challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes 48 percent to Grimes’ 43 percent, with a 4.1 percent margin of error. The poll of 704 registered Kentucky voters was conducted by SurveyUSA from Oct. 25 to Oct. 29

Thursday October 30, 2014

JENKINS SUPER PULLS NO PUNCHES

The new superintendent of the Jenkins Independent Schools System says he's not making excuses about the district's poor state test score performance - and is already working on improvements. Freddie Bowling succeded the retiring Deborah Watts as supervisor, and had been an elementary school principal in Pike County before coming to Jenkins. Results from the Kentucky Department of Education's tests ranked Jenkins schools in the "Needs Improvement" category.

CAMP BRANCH MAN FOUND GUILTY OF CHILD MOLESTATION

A Letcher County Circuit court finds a man guilty of child sex abuse. Carl Adams of Camp Branch was convicted on charges that dated back to 2013. It's the 3rd time a jury finds a Letcher County man accused of child molestation guilty as charged. Sentencing is scheduled for December.

HIT AND RUN DRIVER SOUGHT

Police are hunting for a man wanted in a hit and run involving a school bus in Perry County.  Investigators say it happened yesterday morning when Gary Daniels side-swiped the bus then took off. No one was injured in the crash. Daniels is believed to be in the Oneida area of Clay County and police have been looking for him Highway 1482 as Daniels is known around that area. He's known to have a long criminal history and is wanted on at least one outstanding warrant.

COPS SEARCH FOR BURGLAR

A Pike County man wanted on multiple charges is still on the loose. Police say Jonathan Robinette is suspected in burglary and theft charges in Floyd and Pike Counties. Robinette is 6 foot tall, average build with brown hair, hazel eyes and facial hair. Tips on Robinette's whereabouts can be called in to Kentucky State Police Post 9 at  1-800-222-5555.

REPORT VOTE BUYING TO THE A-G

With election day just days ahead Attorney General Jack Conway gets the word out that voters can says you can help his office combat vote buying by utilizing his election fraud hotline. Conway says it is an important tool to ensure honest and fair elections for all Kentuckians. During the May Primary Election the hotline received more than 205 calls from more than 60 counties. The number to call is 800-328-VOTE.

WATER DISTRICT SUES CITIES OVER LATE PAYMENTS

2 Knott County cities are being sued for past due water bills totaling nearly $400,000. An attorney for the Knott County Water and Sewer District says Vicco owes over $189,000 and Hindman around $196,000. Each city resells the district's water to homes and businesses. State approval isn't required for the district to cut off service to the 2 cities but for now that action isn't being pursued.

UMW RALLY FOR GRIMES

The United Mine Workers held a rally in Pike County in support of Democratic US Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes. Union president Cecil Roberts says one reason for supporting Grimes is that she's committed to supporting miner's pension and healthcare plans. Polls show Grimes and incumbent Mitch McConnell remain in a statistical dead heat.

FEDERAL CHARGES FILES AGAINST SUSPECTED MAIL THIEF

A Harlan County woman is jailed on a federal warrant for mail theft. Tina Asher of Loyall is being held in the Laurel Detention Center in London where she was to make her first appearance in US District Court. Charging papers say Asher broke into Loyall Post Office parcel lockers on 3 separate occasions during October of 2013.  Loyall Police Chief Mike Lunsford tells the Enterprise that the investigation started after he was contacted by the postal service after receiving complaints of stolen mail. Lunsford says he's told Asher could face 5 years in jail for each mail theft count and 3 years for each count of destroying mail receptacles.