Most often the road to achieving one’s dream is littered with speed bumps, turnabouts and dead ends. Fortunately for Franklin County High School graduate Logan Woodside, recent lessons learned on and off the football field have led to a well-earned second chance. The seventh round pick by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2018 NFL Draft, the former FCHS quarterback’s professional career got off to a rocky start last June when he was arrested for operating a motor vehicle under the influence and speeding. After the Bengals cut him shortly before the start of the regular season, the Tennessee Titans picked him up for three weeks before releasing him.
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Kentucky has long ranked among the worst in the nation in many areas of health, but the state has seen improvements in recent years. Better health means happier people and a more employable workforce. It also means less health care debt adding uncertainty to hospital’s bottom lines and families’ bank accounts. And our low uninsured rate has undoubtedly been a side effect of the state’s expanded Medicaid coverage, which began in 2014. Since that time, “Kentucky’s uninsured rate for the nonelderly fell from 18.8% in 2013 to 6.8% in 2015, one of the largest reductions in the country,” according to KFF. That should be great news for employers and prospective businesses looking to expand or locate in Kentucky. Our workforce is healthier and more ready to work now than at any other time in recent history. But there could be cause for concern that the state may soon go backwards in this area, potentially losing the ground it’s gained since 2014.
Andy Beshear dodged a bullet, and he should thank Donald Trump’s Justice Department for the favor. Because the feds waited until late June to announce they had evidence Jerry Lundergan broke state laws, as well as the federal laws he was charged with violating during Alison Lundergan Grimes’ political campaigns, Beshear likely won’t have to prosecute his father’s longtime political nemesis. And that likely allows him to avoid splitting the Democratic Party as the governor’s race roars to a finish over the next four months.
The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has released a data-driven list of projects that are candidates for state transportation funding, using initial results from the State Highway Investment Formula for Tomorrow. The results will be a key component in developing the upcoming 2020 Highway Plan, according to an announcement from the state.
A judge approved a temporary injunction allowing Winchester police officer and Clark County Magistrate Travis Thompson to continue working as an officer while the legal case continued. During a hearing Friday, Clark Circuit Judge Brandy Oliver Brown issued her ruling to maintain the status quo as it existed when Thompson filed the suit in March. Clark County Attorney William Elkins has maintained that Thompson can not fill both roles, arguing Thompson’s oath as magistrate negates the oath he took to be an officer and cited state law prohibiting one person from being a municipal officer and a county officer at the same time.
Mark Wood was out of town visiting a sick family member Sunday evening when he heard news that his Marshall County marina had suffered damage from a severe storm -- confirmed by weather officials on Monday as an EF1 tornado. From Madisonville, he watched as a concerning spot on the radar came closer and closer to Moors Resort and Marina. Fire, power and environmental officials surveyed the damage Monday, and Wood said he hopes cleanup of the damaged docks can commence by Wednesday or Thursday. Wood estimated about 40 boats were damaged due to the storm. Emergency officials said some people were trapped in their boats inside the wreckage, but all were rescued without injuries.
Land Between the Lakes is asking the public to pay attention to barricades and avoid closed areas following a series of storms that passed through the area over the weekend. While there were no reported injuries as a result of the storms, the weekend weather did result in downed trees and power lines in LBL. As a result, some roads and campgrounds will be closed to visitors while crews work to clear the effected areas.
A man in custody in the Philippines is challenging extradition to the U.S., where a murder charge awaits him in Warren County. Antonio Marsonel Wilson, 39, of Smiths Grove, is under indictment on charges of complicity to murder, tampering with physical evidence and abuse of a corpse. The charges arise from the death of Smajo Miropija, 49, of Bowling Green, whose severely burned body was found Feb. 8.
Last week, Lori Schroeder, a researcher at Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest in Bullitt and Nelson counties discovered a very rare Hidden Springsnail (fontigens cryptica), which only has been found five other places in the world and marks the first time it has wormed its way into Kentucky. The cave species is translucent white and measures under 2 millimeters. And last month, researchers also unearthed the Bluff Vertigo snail (vertigo meramecensis), another rare species found in fewer than 30 locations throughout world. These discoveries seem to help Bernheim’s case against the proposed LG&E gas pipeline that would run through its recently acquired properties and other parts of Bullitt County. There also has been talk of an Interstate 65/71 regional connector that would also cut through the privately owned forest.
The boys are coming back to town, Gov. Matt Bevin says – the boys, in this case, being President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. Bevin is back on the ballot this fall and facing what's expected to be a tough challenge from Democrat Andy Beshear. But Kentucky's Republican governor says he expects Trump and Pence to visit the Bluegrass State "once, twice, maybe more" ahead of the Nov. 5 election.
Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd on Monday ruled the Bevin administration intentionally violated the Kentucky Open Records Act in refusing to release a copy of an economic analysis of the administration's 2017 pension reform plan. In a 19-page final order in the case, Shepherd ordered the economic analysis be released and – because the violation of the open records law was willful – directed the state to pay $72,833 in attorneys' fees and costs to the person who requested the record. The controversial economic analysis will not be released immediately, however, because Shepherd said the Bevin administration will have time to appeal Monday's ruling to the Kentucky Court of Appeals.
Starting Thursday, anyone who can legally possess a gun in Kentucky can carry it around under a coat, in a purse or hidden in a hip holster — no permit required. Senate Bill 150, which was signed into law on March 11 and takes effect June 27, eliminates the six-hour gun-safety training course, background check and $60 application fee that Kentucky previously required. It also removes an exclusion that prevented Kentuckians from getting a concealed-carry permit if they owed more than a year of child support or had misdemeanor alcohol or drug convictions within three years.
In an effort to combat the statewide opioid epidemic, organizations across the state are encouraging businesses to rethink addiction and hire or support employees who battle substance abuse. Beth Davisson, executive director of the Kentucky Chamber Workforce Center, announced the launch of the Opioid Response Program for Businesses at a Kentucky opioid summit on Monday. She said this program is the first she knows of in the United States.
A man was in custody Monday after allegedly firing at police and setting fire to a house in Bell County, according to Kentucky State Police. Charles E. Lawson, 53, was charged with attempted murder of a police officer, assault of a police officer and first-degree wanton endangerment. He was booked just after 7 a.m. Monday. Lawson is accused of shooting into a home just after midnight Monday in the Cary community before allegedly starting a fire at or near his own residence across the street, according to state police.
Kentucky House Democrats disputed Monday the Bevin administration’s claim that it has enough votes to pass a pension-relief bill in a special legislative session. Bryan Sunderland, Gov. Matt Bevin’s legislative director and deputy chief of staff, said last week that enough votes are in the state House and Senate to pass the bill to ease skyrocketing pensions costs for regional universities and 118 quasi-government agencies, such as mental health centers, public health departments and libraries. Sunderland declined to say how many votes the administration has secured but said he believes at least 51 are needed in the 100-member House, where Republicans outnumber Democrats 61 to 39.
A Christian County Grand Jury indicted former Hopkinsville High School band director and his wife Friday, according to circuit court documents. Jordan Seth Peveler, 30, Hopkinsville, is charged with four counts of third-degree rape, three counts of third-degree sodomy and one count of unlawful transaction with a minor. The grand jury also indicted his wife, Hannah Peveler, 28, Hopkinsville, with three counts of tampering with a witness. Hannah Peveler is a former assistant commonwealth’s attorney for Christian County.
Health departments in Christian, Todd and Hopkins counties have joined forces to purchase a vehicle that will serve the three communities as a mobile health unit and which could provide a variety of services to residents in their own neighborhoods.
A part-time Franklin County Sheriff’s Office court security officer has been fired after his arrest over the weekend on charges of driving an ATV while intoxicated and killing his passenger in a wreck. Mario Chavez, 42, posted a $10,000 cash bond Sunday morning. He was arrested after an ATV crash Friday afternoon on Old Landing Road in Monterey in southern Owen County left a 73-year-old passenger, Patricia Karsner, dead.
Two Hardin County residents are in stable condition at University Hospital in Louisville after the two-seater plane they were in crashed Sunday night at the Vine Grove airport. Josef Schroeder, 75, of Radcliff and Daniel Brooks, 34, of Rineyville, suffered multiple fractures in the crash that occurred around 6:30 p.m., according to Vine Grove police, one of several agencies on the scene.
The idea to blend bingo and exercise for the elderly first came to Western Kentucky University professor Jason Crandall as if by serendipity. Crandall, an exercise science and kinesiology professor, recalls the day he planned to launch an exercise program at an assisted living facility in Owensboro – only to have it disrupted by the facility’s regular bingo game. Then it dawned on him: Why not combine the two?
Sitting in a coffee shop this week, I came to an overwhelming conclusion: Our society would be in trouble if technology went bye-bye. It was impossible to count how many people were talking on their cell phones, texting, working on laptops, listening to their iPods or doing a host of other things that involved electricity or Wi-fi. And it wasn’t just teens or twenty- and thirty-somethings, either.
If we’re going to talk about reparations — and we should talk about reparations — we need to figure out how to do it right and how to not do it. Reparations should not go to institutions. If they’re paid, they need to go to the people whose ancestors suffered under slavery, under Jim Crow and under the more recent abominations that we have inflicted on blacks, including redlining, and job and educational discrimination.
A Pikeville man could face a maximum sentence of up to life in prison after pleading guilty in a sex trafficking case. In U.S. District Court in Pikeville on Friday, Ernest B. “Junior” Ray, 55, of Beech Street, Pikeville, pleaded guilty to sex trafficking of juveniles, charges stemming from a federal indictment handed down against him in February. He was arrested March 5. The indictment charged Ray with trafficking five different minors for the purpose of sex between 2010 and 2016.
Williamsburg Police identified the woman killed outside her home Friday morning. Chief Wayne Bird said the victim is 58-year-old Wanda Richardson. Police say Richardson was beaten, but are awaiting the results of an autopsy to confirm the cause of death.
Clean-up and power restoration efforts resumed Saturday in McCracken County, a day after severe weather damaged numerous properties, trees and utility poles. Kevin Smith, a National Weather Service meteorologist, said the weekend's severe weather included wind gusts reaching approximately 57 mph at Barkley Regional Airport and more than 1.5 inches of rainfall. A "survey team" was sent to investigate for any evidence of tornado damage in Christian County, and there were storm-related fatalities in the region, Smith said.
No one understands beauty is in the eye of the beholder more than West Louisville farmer Keith Riney. For more than 30 years, Riney has offered what some people call "ugly" tomatoes or what he refers to as "seconds" or "canners." "I've sold to groceries and restaurants and everybody wants a beautiful tomato," Riney said. "And they don't want to pay top dollar for anything that's not." Still, Riney guarantees his seconds will always taste better than they look.
The wages and benefits of more than 12,000 Louisville workers will be on the line when national contract negotiations between Ford Motor Co. and 55,000 members of the United Auto Workers union begin next month. The current contract ends in September, and a labor expert told Insider that turbulence in the auto industry and the economy as a whole will make the coming tug-of-war the toughest since before the financial crisis.
Recognizing that body cameras protect both the public and police, the U.S. Department of Justice has provided at least $20 million to more than 100 law enforcement departments around the country — including Louisville's — to buy body cameras. But that same Justice Department not only forbids its own agents in the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Marshals Service from wearing body cameras, it also bans local police officers from using them when they serve on joint local-federal task forces. And that is creating friction with some police departments.
A man from Kentucky was one of the 11 people killed in a plane crash in Hawaii this weekend, reports say. Larry Lemaster was an Army veteran and professional skydiver. He was an instructor at Oahu Parachute Center when he died on a small plane used for skydiving. There were no survivors in the crash. Hawaiian TV station KITV reported that Lemaster's wife, Anna Elkins, said she lost something she "could not put into words" in a Facebook post honoring her husband.
Over 20,000 people in the Louisville area were without power Sunday evening after a short but severe storm blew through the city, bringing high winds and a brief tornado warning. As of 10:15 a.m. Monday, the number of LG&E-KU customers without power was a little more than 900, down from more than 20,700 early Sunday evening, according to the company's website. The hardest hit areas appeared to be the West End and downtown, which were directly in the path of the tornado warning, which was issued about 4:10 p.m. and expired about 4:30 p.m.
A well-known Pike County property owner pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court Friday to five counts of sex trafficking of minors in a deal that eliminated six counts of drug tracking filed against him earlier this year. Ernest B. Ray, also known as Junior, was indicted in February on the charges and pleaded not guilty in March, but rescinded that plea during his hearing Friday. On Friday, Ray admitted recruiting girls under the age of 18 for sex acts and paid them with alcohol, money and drugs.
Like most people who flock out to Keeneland every spring and fall, I’m a casual horse racing fan. I like to watch them prance in the paddock, then stretch out down the track in a pulsating mass of muscle and speed. I believe they love to run and present as evidence of that the sight of Bodexpress, who ran the entire Preakness after losing his jockey at the starting gate. As a Lexington resident, I also appreciate the deep economic underpinning of horses around here, from the foals that gambol in our fields to the less scenic work of breeders, farriers, feed merchants, veterinarians, and grooms. Its economic impact, according to one study, brings about $4 billion a year. That’s why the current state of racing seems so scary.
Kentucky, particularly the largely rural counties that Donald Trump won in 2016, is getting lots of help from an administration transportation grant program that has favored rural projects over urban, according to a McClatchy analysis of Department of Transportation data. Kentucky, home to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and her husband, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, had six projects approved by the Obama-era Department of Transportation in eight years. Trump swept to victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton in all but two of the state’s 120 counties. And since he took office two years ago, Kentucky has landed four projects.
A massive statue of Abraham Lincoln that belonged to Eric C. Conn, the Kentucky disability attorney sentenced to a total of 27 years in prison for Social Security fraud, was sold this week along with Conn’s office spaces in Floyd County. Floyd County businessman Jerry Flannery purchased a total of about 11 acres along U.S. Route 23, which includes five mobile homes where Conn operated his business. Flannery declined to say how much he paid for the property but said he agreed to donate the Lincoln statue to the Floyd County Fiscal Court, which will transfer it to the Middle Creek National Battlefield, a civil war battlefield near Prestonsburg.
Two people were injured Sunday night after a plane preparing to land at Hardin County's Vine Grove airport clipped a tree and plunged to the ground, a witness said. Jeff Lincoln, who lives on Airport Road a few hundred yards from where the yellow plane landed, said he was the first person on the scene and called 911.
Severe weather returned to western Kentucky on Sunday, leaving a trail of damage across the Jackson Purchase after a third straight day of straight-line winds and hard rain. While no tornados were confirmed in Paducah, there was substantial damage to homes, businesses, power lines and trees. The weather service will be conducting two storm damage surveys today, one starting in Carlisle County before swinging through Ballard, McCracken and Livingston counties and the other beginning in Hickman and going through Carlisle, Graves, Marshall and Lyon counties.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, under the Trump administration, last week released its answer to the Obama-era Clean Power Plan: the Affordable Clean Energy rule. The Clean Power Plan set national emissions limits on power plants. The new rule shifts the responsibility to states to scale back emissions. The Trump administration’s rule doesn’t set targets but suggests ways to improve energy efficiency at individual power plants.
Summer is finally here for families to enjoy the great outdoors. Unfortunately, ticks see it the same way. “We’ve been getting slammed with tick reports all across the counties,” said Health Promotion Manager Terrie Burgan with the Lincoln Trail District Health Department in Elizabethtown. “We just want people to be aware and start taking precautions because people are outside more.”
Gov. Matt Bevin’s newfound confidence that he has enough votes to pass a pension-relief proposal eerily reminds us of the ’80s Great White classic “Once Bitten Twice Shy.” In other words, fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. A Bevin aide said this week that the governor is confident enough in legislative support for the proposal that he will soon call a special session — which would be the second in less than nine months. Haven’t we been down this road before?
While a wide majority of drivers see distracted driving behavior as risky, that did not stop more than 41.3 percent from admitting they had read texts or emails on their phone at least once in the past 30 days, while 32.1 percent said they had typed on their device while driving, according to new data from AAA. Distracted driving is an epidemic in the U.S., where people’s phones and other electronic devices have become a sort of addiction. That addiction seeps into all parts of our lives, and in this case, is dangerous and potentially fatal.
Since 1952, under a Kentucky state law, police officers involved in traffic-related incidents with citizens that resulted in serious injury or death have been immune from litigation brought by the families of victims who were harmed or killed. Recently, the Kentucky Supreme Court struck down the 67-year-old law, Chambers v. Ideal Pure Milk Co., in a 6-1 vote, stating that police can be sued for damages when their car chases lead to the death or injury of third parties.
School board members in Lincoln County on Thursday did not end a controversial web-based learning program that some middle school parents have been fighting. After school board members announced at a packed meeting that the decision to use Summit Learning rested not with them but with the middle school decision-making council, an angry response was posted Thursday night on the Facebook page called “Lincoln County Parents and Teachers against Summit Learning.”
A Kentucky man was arrested Thursday night by military police in Virginia and accused of sharing sexually explicit photos of children online, according to authorities. Don C. Lewis III was arrested at about 11:45 p.m. Thursday in Prince George, Virginia, by Fort Lee Military Police, according to a Kentucky State Police news release.
A Williamsburg man is in custody for allegedly killing his aunt at a Whitley County residence early Friday morning. According to Williamsburg Police Chief Wayne Bird, Michael Lee Worley, 40, was taken into custody and charged with the murder of his aunt. The incident happened at 1119 Betty West Road.
Prosecutors are still waiting for DNA evidence from a homicide case from Hughes Avenue before the case can be resolved. Danny Tharpe, 51, was in Clark Circuit Court Thursday afternoon for a status conference. His attorney asked whether it should be set for a trial, but Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Heidi Engel said she was still waiting for DNA evidence in the case. The case was then continued until Sept. 12.
A Benton pharmacist must spend two years in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release after being convicted of drug theft, firearm and other charges, federal officials said Thursday. Kyle W. Humphrey, 34, pleaded guilty in March to charges of prescription medication theft, mislabeling prescription medication in order to defraud or mislead, wrongful use of health information and being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm. He was sentenced Thursday in U.S. District Court in Paducah.
In retrospect, Thursday’s funeral for longtime Murray State University professor and department chairman Dr. Robert H. “Doc” McGaughey III probably hit all of the necessary points. Of course, it included humor, most of which was supplied by McGaughey’s close friend and comedy partner, fellow Murray State professor Bob Valentine, who served as the day’s emcee in front of a crowd of about 175 people inside Lovett Auditorium.
Several boat visits are planned for Maysville and Augusta this summer. Mason County Tourism Director Lacey Holleran said the Queen of the Mississippi will visit Maysville on July 1, 7, 21 and 27 while the American Duchess will visit on July 17. The B and B Riverboat will also visit the area on July 31-Aug. 1.
A Mayfield woman injured in one of two drive-by shootings Tuesday night in Mayfield has died. SaVannah Hancock, 23, of Mayfield died at 4:11 p.m. Thursday at Deaconess Hospital in Evansville, Indiana, Mayfield Police Chief Nathan Kent said. In both shootings, shots appeared to have been fired into homes from the street, Kent said.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andy Beshear has regularly boasted on the Kentucky campaign trail how, as the state attorney general, he has defeated Republican incumbent Matt Bevin in court. "Every time we’ve stood up to them, every time we’ve won and we’ll beat them again," Beshear told a group of teachers in February. Beshear has bested Bevin in two high-profile cases that Democrats use to energize supporters. He blocked the governor's $18 million cut to Kentucky universities in 2016 and the administration's coveted pension reform bill in 2018. But Bevin got a slam dunk this month when the Kentucky Supreme Court unanimously upheld a 2017 executive order that shuffled various state education boards.