Thursday, June 07, 2007


Gilbert Man Arrested.

A Gilbert man posted $6,000 bond after he was arrested by the West Virginia State Police. Eric Scott Blankenship was charged with four counts displaying obscene material to a minor. If convicted Blankenship faces one to five years.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Fatal Car Crash Claims Pikeville Man.

A Pike County man was killed early Wednesday morning when the vehicle he was driving swerved off the road and flipped on its top. The victim was 45 year old Billy Bentley Junior of Pikeville. The accident occurred on Kentucky 194. The passenger, Clifford Bentley was transported to a local hospital with multiple injuries.


Mingo County Sheriff's Department Investigating Two Seperate Stabbings.

The Mingo County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a pair of violent crimes that occurred earlier this week.

A mentally handicapped woman was stabbed multiple times in her stomach at her Baisden residence. According to a press release, the Baisden resident was stabbed multiple times by her sister while she was asleep. The weapon was a eight inch steak knife. Both women are mentally handicapped.

In a separate incident, Denny Paul Justice of Justice was stabbed by Phillip Neace . The press release stated that the argument began over a stolen lawnmower.


Mingo County Commission Conducts Meeting.

The Mingo County Commission conducted there first regular meeting for the month of June. The governing body passed the following:

*Granted financial request in the amount of $5,000 to the City of Williamson Swimming Pool.
*Approved $3,500 request for Jeanette Boyd Park at Thacker.
*Hired Matt Lovern as an intern for the prosecutor’s office. Lovern will be paid $6.00 per hour from June 18th- July 31st.
*Increased the sheriff’s budget by $50,000 to cover the salary for deputies until the end of the fiscal year. The new budget begins July 1.
* Granted financial request in the amount of $8,000 to the Housing Authority.
* Hired Jarrod Fletcher Homeland Security Director. Effective July 1.


Fletcher Named New Homeland Security Director.

By a vote of 2-1, the Mingo County Commission hired Jarrod Fletcher to become the county’s new Homeland Security Director. Commissioners John Mark Hubbard and Hootie Smith voted for Fletcher. Commissioner Dave Baisden voted against. The Williamson native will be sworn into his new job, July 1, pending that he passes a physical. The job will pay a base salary of $20,000 annually.


Wayland Police Chief Resigns after Being Jailed on Drug Charges

Donald Nathan Little resigned as the Chief of Police of the small Floyd County community of Wayland. Little was arrested this past weekend in Pikeville. Little is accused of being on methadone when he visited a Pike County restaurant. Wayland has had a high turnover rate for the position. In the last seven years, the town has had five police officers. For the time being the police cruiser will be parked behind city hall.


Pike County School Bus Fleet Named One of the Best in Country.

The Pike County Schools’ Transportation Department has been named one of the Top Ten Bus Fleets’ Maintenance Departments in the United States by the national publication “ Fleet School Bus,”. The magazine published by the National Association of Public Transportation rates school bus departments across the country. Transportation Director, Ancie Casey said that it is the good relations between the bus drivers and maintenance staff that keep things running smoothly. Ten mechanics are currently on staff, each of whom receives annual update training and State Approved Inspector Training. Pike County School Buses travel approximately 10,000 miles a day, or 1.75 million miles annually


Pike County Plans on Going After Oxycontin Makers

We’ve had enough. Now, someone has to pay. That’s the message sent out by officials in Pike County. The subject is oxycontin. A powerful painkiller, Judge Executive Wayne T. Rutherford and Sheriff Fuzzy Keesee reported to the Pike County Fiscal Courtthe extent of the impact oxycontin has on the county. A possible lawsuit is in the planning stage to recoup some of the cost of the devastation the drug has caused. Attorney Gary C. Johnson will act as the attorney for the county.


Work Begins Thursday to Remove Trash from River Bed in One Johnson County Community

Work will begin Thursday and should last about one month as contract workers will be removing a logjam of trash and debris that built up during April flooding in the Johnson County community of River. Bulldozers will be used to remove some trees so that equipment can be positioned close to the river bank. A temporary rock pad will be built to hold a crane that will be used to lift and remove the debris. The project calls for removal of the trash as well as stabilization of the stream banks

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


Two More Arrests in Copper Theft Ring.

The Mingo County Sheriff’s Department made two more arrests in there ongoing investigation to the theft of copper throughout the county. Magistrate Eugene Crum set bail for $14,000 for Billy Bolden of Ashland, Kentucky and Brandon Frasher of Huntington, West Virginia. The men are charged with setting fire to property, receiving and transferring stolen property. The men are accused of stealing copper from Kermit Coal. Frasher and Bolden remained lodged in jail.


Former County Employee Admits to Selling Drugs at Work Place.

A former Pike County employee pleaded guilty to drug charges. Belfry resident, Pete Hackney faces three years in prison, after admitting that he sold drugs from his work place. Hackney is a former employee at the Pike County Landfill. Hackney will be sentenced July 13th by Circuit Court Judge Eddy Coleman


The New Meaning of Drive-Thru.

An elderly woman was shaken up after she lost control of her vehicle and it crashed through the back side of the Williamson Branch of Community Trust Bank. Dave Rockel of the Williamson Police Department told us that no one inside the bank was injured. Rockel said that the car went through the bank on the drive- thru side about 20 feet from the teller window. The vehicle was totaled. The bank building suffered significant damage. The bank remained open.


Police Making Progress .

Police are zeroing in on several suspects that they believe are behind to making threatening phone calls that led to the dismissal of schools three days last week. The West Virginia State Police along with the Mingo County Sheriff’s Department are conducting the investigations. Last Wednesday a call was received by the North Matewan Giovannis. The call stated that someone in the high school was going to die. That call led to the dismissal of seven schools. Thursday, Matewan High students were dismissed after a bomb threat. The next day the school let classes out early again after another bomb threat was received by a Matewan resident. The caller said that a bomb was going to go off in Matewan High. The culprits that are responsible are facing felony charges.


Mingo Co Teen Pleads Guilty to DUI Causing Death.

A Mingo county teenager pleaded guilty to reckless DUI causing death. Jordan Vance will be formally sentenced July 17th, by Mingo County Circuit Court Judge Mike Thornsbury. Vance struck a vehicle head-on killing Joyce Workman. The accident occurred on Laurel Creek. Workman was a teacher’s aide at Lenore K-8 School. Vance was Workman’s nephew. Vance faces one to ten years of prison time, or he can be sentenced to two years at the Anthony Correctional Center.


Sue Ann Branham Habitat Home Finished

Sandy Valley Habitat for Humanity dedicated their 44th home Tuesday to a local family. The family of Sue Ann Branham , received the keys to there brand knew home during a special ceremony. The home was built by volunteers from Big Sandy Community and Technical College. The two-story dwelling was built on Robinson Heights, which is a 19 acre site located one mile north of Coal Run. Andrew Dinsmore, Executive Director of Sandy Valley Habitat for Humanity says that two more homes will be built this fall. The Branham home is the seventh to be built on the site. Dinsmore said that they have room for 22 more homes


Pike Woman's Manslaughter Trial Begins Wednesday

The trial of a Pikeville woman will get underway Wednesday in Pike County Circuit Court. Rhonda Justice is standing trial for second degree manslaughter. Justice is accused of not properly supervising her four year-old son. Joshua justice wandered into a neighbors’ pool and drowned on April 1, 2004

Monday, June 04, 2007


Lovely Kentucky Man Accused of Taking Car.

The Martin County Sheriff’s Department arrested a man that is accused of stealing a car from the parking lot of a Kermit, WV business. Arlie Bowen Jr, thirty-three years old is accused of stealing a 1996 blue oldsmobile. The vehicle was recovered on the Kentucky side of the Kermit Bridge


Martin County Man arrested on child Abuse Charge.

The Martin County Sheriff’s Department arrested an Inez man after he admitted to them that he struck his 14 year old grandchild. 57 year-old Larry G. Johnson was charged with fourth degree assault (child abuse ) . According to the complaint, the teenager went to a neighbors’ house with red marks on her legs, back and neck. Johnson told police that he struck his granddaughter because she wouldn’t stay home. The girl told the deputies that she wanted to say over at a friends house


Johnson County Man Charged With Murder After Leaving Scene of Fatal Accident.

A Johnson County man is lodged in the Big Sandy Detention Center as he has been charged with murder and leaving the scene of an accident. 52 year old Cecil Curtis, of Flat Gap died Sunday, when the motorcycle he was operating, was struck by a car driven by Dale Wells Jr, of Flat Gap. The accident occurred on route 172 in Johnson County


Floyd County Teenager Dies from Injuries in Motorcycle Accident.

A Floyd County teenager has died after injuries that he sustained in a motorcycle accident. Steven Allen, 19, of Stanville passed away Monday in a Huntington hospital. According to the KSP, Allen was traveling northbound on US 23 in Stanville. Allen’s motorcycle went off the road. The motorcycle struck a rock cliff. He then was ejected. The accident occurred early Sunday morning

Sunday, June 03, 2007


Logan County Man Pleads Guilty to Bank Robbery.

A Logan County man who was arrested in 2006 with robbing a West Logan Bank pleaded guilty of committing that crime late last week in Logan County Circuit Court. Peter Wilhelm Pajkowski, 56, of Pecks Mill admitted that he walked into the United National Bank brandishing a weapon and demanded money. Pajkowski fled on foot with $1,600. The Pecks Mill resident faces 3-15 in prison .


Harvey Street Bridge Re-Named.

The Harvey Street Bridge in Williamson has been re-named the Pete Dillon Bridge. Dillon’s 34 year career with the city began in 1944. He retired in 1978 from the position of maintenance supervisor for the Williamson Housing Authority. Dillon was the first person to drive across the bridge that is now named after him. A special ceremony was held Saturday.


Perry A. Cline School Named Kentucky Landmark.

The building that formerly housed the Perry A. Cline School has been declared a Kentucky Landmark by the Kentucky Heritage Council. The longtime African – American School was built in 1937.educating students from Pike County until integration took place. The school offered grades 1-12. In 1944, under the leadership of Prinicipal W.R. Cummings, The Perry A. Cline School was named the state’s most progressive school by the Kentucky Negro Education Association. After its closure in 1966, the school served as the Pikeville Housing Authority, senior center and community center until being converted into a homeless shelter in 1992. The building is located at ReDale Drive in Pikeville.


Robinson Creek Resident Awaits Preliminary Hearing on a Pair of Drug Charges

A Robinson Creek resident is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Pike County Circuit Court. Damron Maggard was arrested early Sunday morning. Maggard is being charged with one count each of second and third degree drug trafficking .


Mouthcard Resident Being Held in Pike County Detention Center Without Bail.

A Mouthcard resident who police believe is behind a string of robberies in Kentucky and Virginia, remains lodged in the Pike County Detention Center. Thirty- three year old Craig S. Steffey is being held without bond. Steffey was apprehended Friday by the Pike County Sheriff’s Department. The Mouthcard resident was arrested on New Camp Road, after the vehicle he was driving ran out of gas. Steffey was charged with second degree robbery, possession of drug paraphernalia and a controlled substance not in original container. A passenger in the vehicle , Tina Hager, 31, of Fort Wayne, Indiana was also apprehended. Hager is being held in jail without bond. She is charged with being a fugitive from justice. Although police believe she played a role in the alleged robberies. She has yet to be charged..
Steffey is accused of attempting to hold up a grocery store at Stopover. Steffey is also the focus of an investigation in being the culprit in two more suspected robberies


Winchester Company to Oversee Construction of New School.

The Pike County Board of Education , recently voted to hire Codell Construction Company, out of Winchester as the construction management service on the new Pike Central Elementary project.

Codell is no stranger to the local area. The company has done renovation work at the Pike County Hall of Justice and several other county projects.

The construction of the school which will replace Mullins is expected to cost $ 10 million. The school is scheduled to open for the 2008 calendar year.


Two Local Men to Stand Trial for Murder.

Two local men accused of shooting to death a Glenwood man, will stand trial for murder August 29, in Cabell County Circuit Court. Charles Blevins, 20, of Williamson and Donnie Ray Evans,22, of McCarr are accused of shooting to death Travis Huff. The alleged act occurred in Barboursville on Febuary 29. The West Virginia State Police have testified the two defendants gave conflicting stories about the motive behind Huff’s death.

Blevins alleged that Huff stole $1,500. Evans blamed it on a drug transaction.


Pike County Leads Commonwealth in ATV Deaths.

Since 2000, Pike County has had nine people to die due to ATV accidents. According to the Kentucky State Police that is more than any county in the Commonwealth. 131 people have died due to four wheeler accidents since 2000. Fourty- seven of those deaths occurred in Eastern Kentucky.
Here is a breakdown of ATV fatalities county by county in our region since 2000.

Pike 9
Letcher 7
Harlan 6
Floyd 4
Martin 2
Magoffin 1

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