Wednesday August 28, 2013

Some Knott County high school students were involved in a bus accident Tuesday morning.

It happened before school along Highway 7 in the Beaver area.

Knott County Sheriff's deputies said Timothy Howard was driving his pickup truck when he dropped something, leaned over to pick it up and side swiped the school bus.

Brent Hoover, transportation director for the Knott County School District says 33 high school students were on the bus, seven were transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Hoover said the driver did a remarkable job on two different issues.

He avoided a head on collision and he did an excellent job of keeping the bus from overturning.

The bus was not seriously damaged.

Sheriff's deputies tell us Howard will not face any criminal charges as a result of the accident.

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Deputies in Wolfe County made an arrest after a pharmacy burglary left the suspect bleeding Tuesday night.

Deputies say they got an alarm call from the Wolfe Family Pharmacy in Campton, and as they arrived, they spotted a car leaving the area.

When deputies went inside, they found shattered glass and blood spread throughout the store, and they say prescription pills were missing.

Deputies reviewed surveillance video and got a good look at the suspect.

Deputies say they traced the car they spotted to its owners and learned the couple's daughter had used it.

Investigators say 31 year old Jessica Chambers confessed to the burglary.

Despite the mess, the owner says the pharmacy will open for business today.

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A judge denied a motion Tuesday by the Kentucky Department of Education to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the Breathitt County School Board.

Breathitt Circuit Judge Frank Allen Fletcher ruled the case should proceed, but both sides should try to settle their differences out of court.

School board members filed the lawsuit after they claim Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday took away their rights as elected officials.

Judge Fletcher ordered the board and state manager Larry Hammond to go on a retreat at a state park to try and settle their differences.

The case is scheduled for review on October 11 in Breathitt County Circuit Court.

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Tuesday morning in Bell County Circuit Court 27 year old James Otis Sizemore pleaded guilty to murder.

Prosecutors say he and William J. Anderson killed 61 year old Bobby Wiggins on November 23rd, 2011.

Police found his body on December 2nd, 2011 in a wooded area near the Bell-Knox County line.

Wiggins died from blunt force injuries to the head, neck, and trunk.

Sizemore agreed to a thirty year sentence.

As part of the plea deal, he agreed to testify against the other defendant, William Anderson, 34.

Wiggins' family agreed to the plea deal.

Sizemore will be sentenced after he testifies at Anderson's trial.

The judge scheduled Anderson's trial for February 4th, 2014.

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Kentucky State Police are making cuts to make up for a nearly $6 million budget deficit by cutting some of the most experienced troopers on the force.

On Friday, state police cut all 20 members of the Trooper R program, which was designed to keep retired troopers with 20 years of experience in rotation.

Five of those troopers were from Post 13 in Hazard, the largest cut than any other post in the state.

Post 13 Captain Blake Slone says as of Tuesday, 21 troopers were on the road covering a five county radius. That’s down from 26.

State police say more than 60 cadets will graduate from the State Police Academy in November and hope that will help with their numbers.

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The state medical board has filed a complaint against a Pikeville doctor.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports Thad R. Manning is accused of conspiring to sell prescription drug samples in exchange for office rent and free or discounted prescription drugs for his employees.

The complaint says he's also been indicted for lying to FBI agents.

A bond hearing on the complaint is scheduled for February, 2014.

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A man accused of destroying property at Stonecrest Golf Course in Floyd County has been indicted.

Court officials say 23 year old Sean McManus is charged with criminal mischief and tampering with evidence.

Police believe McManus caused thousands of dollars worth of damage by driving on one of the course greens and doing doughnuts.

A pre-trial conference is set for November 14th.

He is out of jail on a $20,000 dollar bond.

Tuesday August 27, 2013

Knott County Schools Superintendent Kim King tells WYMT that several students were injured this morning in a school bus crash.

Dispatchers say it happened about 7:40am Tuesday on Route 7 in the Beaver Creek area.

Police say a pickup truck and the bus hit head on.

King says 4 students were injured.

2 were taken to the hospital by ambulance and 2 were taken by their parents.

No word on the extent of their injuries.

We are still gathering information and have more as we get it.

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An investigation is underway into a deadly house fire in Powell County.

The fire started just after 10:00 Sunday night on Nada Tunnel Road in the heart of the Daniel Boone National Forest.

The Powell County coroner has confirmed that 74-year-old Robert "Therril" Ledford was inside the home at the time of the fire.

Fire officials say about 35 firefighters from three separate departments were on the scene trying to get the flames under control.

They say it took about 12,000 gallons of water to put the fire out because it was an old oak home.

According to the coroner, Ledford's body has been sent to Frankfort for an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

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Some road construction in Martin County has residents fearing for their homes and safety.

Several homeowners have joined in a lawsuit to try to protect their property.

They've joined in a lawsuit against Ohio-based Kokosing Construction Company and Brandywine Explosives & Supply of Paris, Kentucky.

Both companies are contracted to build a road in the area, and the Maynards along with other families say the explosions are too big and too close for comfort.

Earlier this month, school board members chose to close nearby Sheldon Clark High School, citing concerns the blasting could weaken the building.

More than 20 people have filed suit against the companies so far.

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A Harlan County man is in jail, accused of breaking into a store and then threatening the man who called police.

Cumberland City Police say a person called them on Thursday night to report a man looking into windows on West Main Street.

When officers arrived, they found a broken window at an old furniture store.

Police say 26-year-old Johnathan Baldwin was inside hiding on the floor.

After officers arrested Mr. Baldwin and brought him outside, he  threatened the man who called police

Police say Baldwin was intoxicated.

He faces several charges including burglary, terroristic threatening, and criminal mischief.

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Funeral services will be held today for a Pike County coal advocate.

David Gooch died Friday at UK Hospital.

Gooch's funeral service will be this afternoon at 1 p.m. at the J.W. Call Funeral Home Chapel in Pikeville.

David Gooch lobbied on behalf of the coal industry throughout the commonwealth and the country for several years.

 

Monday August 26, 2013

 

Friday morning officials in Letcher County responded to calls of a possible explosion. But, as it turned out, it may not have been an explosion after all.

Kentucky State Police say they received a call of a possible explosion at the Isom Double Kwik just before 10 a.m. on Friday.

Letcher County Emergency Management Director, Paul Miles says contractors were about to inspect an underground storage tank from the inside, when the pressure in one of the tanks blew, shooting a vent cap off into the air.

Witnesses says the ground and even the building shook.

Investigators continue to look for the cause of the pressure release.

State Fire Marshals are leading the investigation.

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A victim has been airlifted out of the Harlan area Sunday afternoon.

We do not have many details about the incident but officials say a pedestrian was hit by a vehicle around 3:50 p.m yesterday.

That individual was airlifted to a hospital.

We do not know any further conditions or details at this time.

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The assistant director of emergency management in Clay County was killed in an ATV accident Sunday evening.

Clay County Sheriff Kevin Johnson saysJennings Johnson died around 6:00pm when he was going up an embankment and his 4-wheeler flipped, pinning him underneath.

It happened on Twin Oak Lane in the Burning Spring area.

The sheriff says a neighbor found Jennings and called for help.

He was taken to Manchester Memorial Hospital then to UK Hospital where he later died.

Jennings was 54-years-old.

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A Knott County man has been arrested after an anonymous tip phoned in to Kentucky State Police Post 13 in Hazard.

Officials say they arrested 34 year old Casey Barnett a little after 3:30 pm Saturday in the Lotts Creek Community of Knott County.

Troopers say they found 18 marijuana plants in plain view around Barnett's house.

Barnett is in Kentucky River Regional and is charged with cultivation of marijuana five plants or more.

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In Jenkins, Lakeside Center Pool officials hosted their opening ceremony Saturday afternoon even though the pool first opened on Aug. 16th.

There are 13 employees at the site and city officials say the new pool will benefit the community.

Officials say the rest of the Lakeside Center, including an exercise room, coffee shop, restaurant and internet cafe, should be completed by the fall and at that point more employees will be hired.

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The former town manager of one Southwest Virginia town is facing a more than 130 count indictment on charges she embezzled thousands of dollars from a local arts center.

The Bristol Herald Courier says 46 year old Loretta Mays of Norton, Virginia was indicted by a Wise County grand jury on Wednesday on 135 counts ranging from forgery to felony embezzlement.

The indictment states Mays, who was at one time a city official in Coeburn, wrote and cashed nearly $30,000 dollars in checks from the Lays Hardware Center for the Arts account, dating back to February 2009.

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Former City of Martin Police Chief Brian Baldwin died Thursday night.

Coworkers say the 51-year-old never returned to work after getting sick earlier this year.

Before coming to Martin Baldwin worked at the Salyersville Police Department, Magoffin County Sheriffs Office, Salyersville Fire Department and Middle Fork Fire Department.

Baldwin's Funeral will be today.

 

Friday August 23, 2013

Barbourville Police say a man has stolen nearly $200,000 from a Knox County business.

Michael Jones of Pineville is accused of stealing from Bingham Tire in Barbourville.

Bingham Tire owners say the books just did not add up earlier this year so they turned it over to Barbourville Police.

Police say the now former employee Michael Jones stole merchandise and money.

Jones had been delivering merchandise to locations of businesses that had not purchased the items then billed the items to other clients.

Jail records show Jones posted bond and is out of jail.

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Five Letcher County men are named by the Letcher County Grand Jury in five indictments each charging them with theft of copper wire from Kentucky Power Company.

35 year old Elijah Duane Garrett, 42 year old Jesse Dean Craft Jr., 38 year old Brack Larry Joe Meade, 36 year old James Wayne Johnson and 29 year old Christopher B. Duff are charged in the case.

The grand jury says in addition to the theft of the copper wire, the men damaged or destroyed electrical power lines, circuits and other equipment belonging to American Electric Power.

The five indictments say the offenses took place from November of last to March of this year.

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Nine people are named in 12 indictments returned by the Letcher County Grand Jury including a painter and builder accused of taking more than $6,000 from the Whitesburg United Methodist Church.

37 year old Anthony Carl Day, also known as Tony Day is charged with possession of a forged instrument and theft by deception.

The grand jury says Day cashed several checks drawn on the account of the Methodist Church at Community Trust Bank from September of 2012 through February of this year.

For a full list of indictments and more info on both cases see this week's edition of the Mountain Eagle.

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A friend of a missing Floyd County attorney says they are scaling back their search after finding proof that he is alive.

Martin city attorney Clyde Johnson went missing last month.

His friend Ned Pillersdorf was helping the investigation and says records from a Tracfone Johnson was using show he is moving around the southwest, probably staying at campgrounds.

Pillersdorf says he believes Johnson is in Texas and says he does not believe Johnson is in any trouble and that he does not want to be found.

Pillersdorf has been appointed to run Johnson's law office.

 

Wednesday August 21, 2013

Federal investigators spent Tuesday afternoon searching the office of an eastern Kentucky Judge-Executive.

A Morgan County official confirmed to WYMT that federal investigators did search the office of Judge Tim Conley, and confiscated records and a computer from his office but didn't know why.

FBI and Kentucky State Police were the agencies involved with the investigation.

The judge-executive's office was closed Tuesday afternoon.

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The only survivor of a triple shooting in Bell County last week has been released from the hospital.

Police say Robin Smith, 21, was shot by former Knox County Judge-Executive Raymond Smith.

Police say Smith also shot Robin Smith's father, Michael, and her brother, Dustin.

Michael and Dustin died, and Smith later took his own life.

Police think 52 year old Raymond Smith was angry over how his relationship with the young girl ended.

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A Perry County woman faces child abuse and sex-related charges.

Court officials say a grand jury indicted Brenda Noble - also known as Brenda Bales - last week on sodomy, sex abuse and five counts of criminal abuse.

In the indictment, officials wrote she engaged in deviate sexual intercourse with a child younger than 12 years old between January 2008 and 2012.

Prosecutors also argue she abused two other children and confined them in a small attic without plumbing and electricity and prevented them from going to school.

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Mile marker 16 of the Hal Rogers Parkway near Manchester is where crews are restoring a concrete bridge deck.

It is also where 21-year-old Letcher County native Jacob "Jake" Lucas crashed into a wrecker on Friday which was stopped at a temporary red light.

Lucas died two days later at UK Hospital.

Jacob was an organ donor and several people have received his organs including a Perry County woman with family in Letcher County that received his heart yesterday.

Funeral arrangements for him are incomplete at this time.

Friends of Jake have declared Thursday Wear Blue Day across Letcher County in honor and remembrance of him.

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There was a large show of support on Tuesday for an Air Force Airman killed in an accident overseas.

Services for Sergeant Ryan Austin were held in Corbin.

The 25-year-old was electrocuted while serving in Europe.

After the funeral service in Corbin, Sergeant Austin was buried in a cemetery in Harlan County.

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A December trial date has been set for the man charged with killing Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum earlier this year.

Media outlets report Cabell Circuit Judge Paul T. Farrell on Tuesday set aside two weeks for the trial of Tennis Melvin Maynard.

Jury selection is scheduled to begin Dec. 9 in Mingo County.

Maynard is accused of shooting Crum April 3 as the sheriff ate lunch in his parked vehicle in downtown Williamson.

He also is charged with attempted murder linked to the pointing of a loaded firearm at Mingo County Sheriff's Corporal Norman Mines and fleeing with reckless indifference.

Maynard has pleaded not guilty to all charges.

A motions hearing will be held Oct. 15.