According to a report from the Kentucky State Police, the former Hopkinsville High School band director, Jordan Seth Peveler, potentially had multiple victims.
The KSP report said two unknown victims reported misconduct from Peveler. The ages of the victims were unknown at the time of the incident; however, one of the victims was legally an adult at the time of the report.
The person who reported the conduct to KSP was known as "RS," a common term for a reporting source. KSP reported that "RS states that information was received stating that a band teacher, 'Seth at a high school in Hopkinsville could be a threat to other kids.'"
"RS received information stating that Seth (Peveler) had sex with a student (#1 student)," the report stated.
The report from KSP was first provided to HHS Principal John Gunn on May 8 about the former HHS band director Jordan Seth Peveler. The KSP report was originally dated May 2.
Dr. Gunn immediately handed the report to the Christian County Public Schools' office, according to documents provided to the New Era from an open records request. The report stated "Chief Administrative Officer Laura Morris and Personnel Director Anita Hopson immediately met with Mr. Peveler and placed him on administrative leave on May 8, 2019."
According to the report, Peveler threatened to kill himself. It is unknown when he made the threat or if there are any active threats or suicidal intention, the KSP report added.
Peveler "groomed" the second alleged victim. When KSP asked what the grooming entailed, RS said Peveler gave the victim a list of things she could and could not do when she went to college.
The report adds that "RS did not make any statement of actual sexual grooming."
According to the report, RS said Peveler also sent a message to a college student threatening to beat up her boyfriend and to kill him.
Law enforcement, including the Hopkinsville Police Department, investigated the allegations. While still on administrative leave, Mr. Peveler resigned May 31.
Peveler is set for a pretrial conference Friday.
Murray Statewill establishCenter for Autism Spectrum Disorders
By John Wright
Murray Ledger & Times
MURRAY -- With a unanimous vote Friday from the Murray State University Board of Regents, a new center was given the go-ahead to begin working with children and adults with issues connected to autism.
Murray State Provost Dr. Mark Arant told the Regents that The Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders will be housed in the Murray State College of Education and Human Services at Alexander Hall. The aim is for the effects of this new facility to spread well beyond the campus boundaries.
"It is our intention to offer this as a service not only to Murray but to our region. I certainly see opportunities for this expanding as well into our service area (the 18 most-western counties of Kentucky)," Arant said in presenting the center as an agenda item of the Academic Excellence and Scholarly Activities Committee.
"We have a very special opportunity here at Murray State University with the presence of Dr. Sean Simons (Murray State psychology program coordinator) to offer a new service to our community as we study and address those with autism and their families. The sooner we can do intervention, the sooner we can help these families."
Simons is a licensed psychologist, as well as a board-certified behavior analyst and nationally certified school psychologist. The university website says Simons has master's and doctoral degrees in school psychology from Oklahoma State University and has worked in several specialty settings, including outpatient assessment, pediatric clinics for children with prenatal substance exposure and the Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta, Georgia as an intensive behavioral therapist.
The website also says that Simons' areas of specialization include the diagnostic assessment and treatment of problems associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder, which the National Institute of Mental Health defines as a "developmental disorder that affects communication and behavior." It is described as a developmental disorder because symptoms generally appear in the first two years of a person's life.
The NIMH describes these symptoms as difficulty with communication and interaction with others, restricted interests and repetitive behaviors and symptoms that hurt a person's ability to function properly with school, work or other areas of life.
Simons said affordability is something the new center will try to emphasize. He said one service where this will be of particular importance will be with diagnostic services.
"The wait list for these is incredibly long and very costly. It can cost up to thousands of dollars without insurance and around $500 with insurance," Simons told the Regents Friday. "We're trying to provide these services at a cost of $250, where that wait list could get down to only a couple of weeks long."
Simons also said that a goal is to provide training to parents and schools, as well as host workshops for the region on this topic. Arant also indicated that the center will create opportunities for students training to serve in these areas once they graduate from Murray State.
Justice firms to paylate Kentucky taxes
By Bill Estepand Will Wright
HINDMAN -- Companies tied to West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice have struck a deal to resolve some of the biggest property-tax delinquencies in Eastern Kentucky's coal counties, providing an infusion of cash for services and schools struggling with tight finances.
Knott, Pike, Harlan and Magoffin counties received checks lastweek totaling nearly $1.2 million, and Justice's organization has pledged to pay an equal amount over the next six months.
The payment agreements will resolve tax debts dating back years.
"This is a really positive thing," said Justice's son, Jay. "We all know these counties desperately need these dollars."
However, the state and some counties waived penalties and interest on debts under the agreement. That didn't sit well with some local officials.
It's not fair for companies tied to Justice, a wealthy businessman, to get a break when poor people in her county have to shoulder the full debt, often requiring them to set up deals to pay a little at a time, said Magoffin County Clerk Renee Arnett Shepherd.
"That's not right," Shepherd said. "I don't agree, and I think it's crazy."
The agreement did not cover Floyd County, where a Justice company called Kentucky Fuel has a delinquent tax bill of $671,000.
It's not clear how that debt will be resolved. The county attorney said he's not willing to waive all interest and penalties on the debt.
State officials said waiving penalties and interest on Justice-company taxes was part of reaching an agreement that will bring in money for counties they might not have been able to collect otherwise.
The state Finance and Administration Cabinet, which led negotiations with Justice over the debts, announced the agreement Monday.
"I am happy that we were able to bring much needed tax revenue to these counties whose budgets have been tightened because of decreasing coal severance revenues and other expenses," Finance Secretary William M. Landrum III said in a news release. "This settlement means the state and these counties no longer have to spend time, money and other resources on lawsuits that could take many years with no guarantee that the taxes would be paid."
The agreement included releasing suspensions on Kentucky Fuel's mining licenses that the state Department of Revenue had sought because of the tax debts, according to the release.
Man in SUV crashes into Paducah restaurant
The Paducah Sun
A Mayfield man was arrested Sunday night after the SUV he was driving crossed into oncoming lanes on Hinkleville Road in Paducah, ran off the road and crashed into the front of Captain D's restaurant.
According to the arrest report, Davis J. Mills, 22, was driving a Toyota 4Runner westward at a high rate of speed about 10:10 p.m. with no headlights on, witnesses said, and went around a barrier wall and into the eastbound lanes at James-Sanders Boulevard.
Witnesses said Mills' vehicle hit the barrier wall and several traffic cones before he apparently lost control near the intersection of New Holt Road.
Mills' SUV jumped a curb, ran through a parking lot and crashed into the front of Captain D's at 5152 Hinkleville Road, coming to rest in the dining area.
No injuries were reported by anyone in the restaurant.
Mills was taken to Mercy Health-Lourdes Hospital for treatment, then arrested on charges of first-degree criminal mischief and driving under the influence. Officers said he smelled of burned marijuana, and admitted having smoked marijuana about an hour prior to the crash.
Davis was booked into McCracken County Regional Jail on $1,500 cash bond.
KSP trooper shot in leg; man who fired shot killed in Perry County incident
Kentucky Press News Service
A state police trooper suffered a leg wound and the man who allegedly fired the shot was killed.
LEX18 reports the officer-involved shooting occurred about 7 p.m. Monday in Perry County's Bonnyman community.
KSP said the man who fired at the trooper was killed at the scene. State police were trying to execute a search warrant at a home next door to the man who was involved in the shooting, LEX18 reports on its website.
The trooper was taken to Hazard ARH for treatment of his gunshot wound. The trooper has not yet been identified by KSP. The name of the dead man has not been released pending notification of family.