February 24, 2017

The Murray State University Board of Regents will meet in regular session today. Among items on the agenda will be updates on MSU’s budget and strategic plan as well as the usual departmental reports. Today’s meeting begins at 8 am in the Jesse Stuart Room of Pogue Library on the MSU campus in Murray.

A man shot on Welch Court in Murray earlier this week has been identified. 23-year-old Kendarian Jennings was shot in the head Monday night. Murray Police report that Jennings had surgery Wednesday morning at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and is expected to be interviewed by Murray police officers as soon as he is able. Police have not made an arrest in the case nor named a suspect in the shooting. Jennings is a former Murray State football player from Memphis who last played for the Racers in 2015.

The Marshall County Health Department is reporting four flu-related deaths this week in elderly adults, and is advising the public to take steps to prevent the virus while the state is still experiencing widespread activity. These deaths underscore the seriousness of flu, particularly for the elderly, children, and others who would be considered at high risk or having a compromised immune system. Each year about 20,000 children younger than 5 years old are hospitalized from flu complications, like pneumonia. Most children who die from flu have not been vaccinated.

A Calloway County resident was one of two people were arrested on drug charges following a traffic stop Thursday morning in Mayfield. Graves County deputies stopped a car for speeding on KY 80 East. During a search of the vehicle, deputies found several bottles of prescription medication. Deputies said one of the bottles had an altered label. Inside that bottle, deputies reportedly found several oxycodone tablets. Deputies arrested the driver, 40-year-old Jason Hammons of Princeton and his passenger, 40-year-old Amie Bennett of Kirksey. Hammons allegedly admitted to police that he was involved in the trafficking of a controlled substance. Hammons was charged with trafficking controlled substance and speeding. Bennett was charged with possession of controlled substance and prescription not in the proper container. Both were lodged in the Graves County Jail.

A burglary complaint led to two arrests and a large drug seizure Wednesday in Graves County. Graves County deputies responded to the 400 block of State Route 1748 East for a burglary in progress. They were told that two men were seen running from the back of a home carrying what looked to be long guns and they left in a black car. After gathering evidence of the burglary, deputies arrived at a home in the 300 block of State Route 1748 East. After obtaining a search warrant, deputies found almost four pounds of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, $150 cash, two handguns, and a rifle. Arrests are pending. Acting on a tip, deputies then responded to a home on Cardinal Drive, where they found and arrested the two burglary suspects. 20-year-old Brandon Ivie and 18-year-old Tristen Shearer were charged with 1st-degree burglary and more arrests are pending. Several guns located by deputies are believed to have been stolen from the home on 1748 East.

Two more people have been charged in the stabbing death of James Pinion earlier this month. Amy and David Hogg of Dorothy Lane in Mayfield were arrested Wednesday night and lodged in the McCracken County Regional Jail. Both are charged with complicity to murder. Forty-seven-year-old Tammy Roberts of Mayfield was charged last week with Pinion’s murder. Police say Roberts is accused of killing Pinion at a home on Dorothy Lane on February 10.

FRANKFORT—A criminal record may soon not automatically disqualify someone from cutting hair or becoming a nurse in Kentucky. The state’s senate yesterday approved a plan to allow some people with felony convictions to get certain jobs that require a state license. Supporters say the new law would make it easier for people to get their lives back on track.

FRANKFORT—Bible literacy classes could soon be coming to Kentucky high schools. The Kentucky House yesterday okayed a plan that will allow schools to teach classes on Hebrew texts and the New Testament. Supporters say the classes aren’t required. Critics say there’s no need to inject religion into the state’s public schools.

UNDATED—Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin says the EPA started with good intentions, but is now out of control. Bevin yesterday told a crowd at the Conservative Political Action Conference just outside of Washington D.C. that the EPA is one of the clearest examples of federal overreach. The governor called the agency a ‘Frankenstein’, in that is once had a noble purpose but now is just a threat to states.

FRANKFORT—Policy makers in Frankfort say a new federal report doesn’t tell them anything they don’t already know. The report from the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services blasts the state’s child protection agency as inefficient, underfunded, and not serving at risk children in Kentucky. The report says Kentucky’s child welfare system needs more money, more case workers, and more help in dealing with a spike of children and families in need.

OWENSBORO—Owensboro is the latest school district in Kentucky to look at a nickel tax. School leaders last night talked about a plan to raise taxes to qualify for more state funding, then lower the local tax rate before the new tax takes effect. Owensboro Superintendent Nick Brake says the scheme will allow the school district to borrow about 12-million dollars for new buildings.

OHIO COUNTY—An arrest is made in a homicide investigation in Ohio County. Kentucky State Police say Donald Lynch of Beaver Dam is facing charges including murder in the death of 30-year-old Amanda Riley of Livermore. Riley’s body was found by a hunter on December 18th in a rural part of Ohio County. Her cause of death was determined to be blunt force trauma.

CARTER COUNTY—No charges are currently filed in a possible self-defense shooting in Carter County. WKYT-TV is reporting that the incident happened yesterday at a home on U.S. 60 in Olive Hill. The injured person was airlifted for treatment.

LAUREL COUNTY—Authorities in Laurel County are trying to determine the identity of a person who was killed in a crash outside of London. Police say the accident happened yesterday afternoon on KY 472. The driver left the roadway on a curve, hit a tree and the vehicle caught on fire.

HART COUNTY—Police are investigating the discovery of the body of a missing southern Kentucky man. No foul play is suspected in the death of 77-year-old Hugh Gossett of Horse Cave. He had been reported missing on February 16th. His body was found along I-65 near the Green River Bridge yesterday.

PIKE COUNTY—A new greenhouse business is in the works in Pike County. WYMT-TV is reporting that AppHarvest is planning to build a high-tech greenhouse in Pikeville beginning in June. The facility is expected to produce bell peppers and cherry tomatoes and will create about 140 jobs.

TENNESSEE—Authorities in Knoxville have someone in custody for a 2015 murder. Police arrested Jeffrey Stokes after a traffic stop yesterday. He’s linked to the shooting death of 18-year-old Alan Johnson who was killed in December of 2015.

TENNESSEE—A former Crockett County sheriff’s deputy is pleading not guilty to federal drug trafficking charges. WBBJ-TV is reporting that Calvin Fields pleaded not guilty yesterday. He was charged after an investigation that involved the FBI. Fields allegedly assisted drug dealers and also tipped off a drug dealer before a search.

TENNESSEE—A driver is recovering after first responders rescued the motorist from a burning vehicle in Memphis. WREG-TV is reporting that the accident happened at Dunn Road and Perry Avenue last night. A vehicle overturned, hit a pole then caught on fire. The driver was taken to the hospital in non-critical condition.

TENNESSEE—Police in Smyrna are asking for the public’s help in identifying a theft suspect. They have released surveillance photos of the white male suspect who stole televisions from two stores in the area. The man was in a dark-colored SUV possibly a Ford Explorer.

TENNESSEE—A large crowd gathered in Knoxville for a discussion regarding the probable repeal of the Affordable Care Act. WBIR-TV is reporting that a forum was held last night by Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero. Several people voiced concerns about losing their health insurance during the forum that took place at Whittle Springs Middle School.

TENNESSEE—A man is facing charges after receiving marijuana through FedEx in Hamilton County. Police arrested Jackie Bailey of Soddy-Daisy after an investigation. A drug dog at a FedEx hub in Chattanooga detected the drugs on Wednesday. At least one other person in the home was also arrested.

NASHVILLE—Police are asking for the public’s help in their search for a missing eleven-year-old boy. Police are looking for Craig Cannon who was last seen around 5:30 yesterday evening along Old Buena Vista Boulevard. He’s described as African-American, five-foot, 100 pounds with black hair and may be wearing glasses. He was wearing jeans, a blue and gray-striped shirt and a dark jacket.

NASHVILLE—Two men are facing charges in a homicide investigation from 2006. Thirty-eight-year-old Cheryl Phillips was killed in a shooting that also injured two others at a party in Edgehill in May of 2006. Larry Wade and Jayson Polk were indicted for her murder on Wednesday. They were both already in jail on unrelated charges.

NASHVILLE—Mayor Megan Barry and Nashville Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson attended a panel on youth violence at a local high school. Students hosted the panel at Hume-Fogg High School last night. They discussed concerns including shootings and assaults involving juveniles.

TENNESSEE—A man is facing numerous charges after being found in possession of numerous fraudulent gift cards during a traffic stop in Dickson. Police arrested Rhodri Bongam of Washington DC after pulling him over on I-40 on Wednesday. He also had equipment in his vehicle to make fraudulent cards.

NASHVILLE—People living in a south Nashville neighborhood are concerned about drag racing in the area. WKRN-TV is reporting that some residents in the Glencliff neighborhood are voicing concerns about increased incidents of drag racing along Glencliff Road and Antioch Pike. One person said she was almost hit recently while pulling out of her driveway.

TENNESSEE—Police in Smyrna are asking for the public’s help in identifying a theft suspect. They’ve released surveillance photos of the white male suspect who stole televisions from two stores in the area. The man was in a dark-colored SUV possibly a Ford Explorer.