Gov. Beshear restores voting rights for some felons
FRANKFORT (AP) — The outgoing Democratic governor of Kentucky has signed an executive order to restore the right to vote and hold public office to thousands of non-violent felons who’ve served out their sentences.
Gov. Steve Beshear signed the order Tuesday. He leaves office next month.
Kentucky was one of four states that did not automatically restore voting rights to felons once they completed all the terms of their sentences. Around 180,000 in Kentucky have served their sentences yet remain banned from casting ballots.
The Kentucky legislature has tried and failed numerous times to pass a bill to restore voting rights to felons. The Republican-controlled Senate would agree only if there was a five-year waiting period, which Democrats refused.
Beshear’s order doesn’t include those convicted of violent crimes, sex offenses, bribery or treason.
Son of man charged in girl’s death arrested
LOUISVILLE (AP) — Authorities say the son of a man charged with killing a Kentucky girl has been arrested for allegedly threatening law enforcement.
Scottsville Assistant Police Chief Darren Tabor said Tuesday that Bradley Madden was arrested in Tennessee.
Tabor did not have the exact charges but said Madden is accused of threatening Scottsville police.
Madden was being held in the Macon County jail in Tennessee. He was arrested Monday night on a warrant from Scottsville police.
Madden’s father, Timothy Madden, is charged with murder, kidnapping, first-degree rape and first-degree sodomy in the death of 7-year-old Gabriella Doolin. She disappeared during a youth football game Nov. 14 and was found dead less than a half-hour later in a creek.
Kentucky State Police Trooper B.J. Eaton says Bradley Madden’s arrest is not connected to the murder.
Death penalty to be sought after officer’s death
RICHMOND (AP) — Prosecutors will seek the death penalty for two men accused of involvement in the fatal shooting of a central Kentucky police officer earlier this month.
Multiple media outlets report that prosecutors said during arraignments Monday that 34-year-old Raleigh Sizemore Jr. and 25-year-old Gregory Ratliff should be eligible for capital punishment if found guilty in the slaying of 33-year-old Richmond Police Officer Daniel Ellis.
Investigators say Sizemore was the gunman and Ratliff failed to warn Ellis that he was in danger while the officer was investigating a robbery. Sizemore and Ratliff both pleaded not guilty Monday to numerous charges, including Sizemore to murder and Ratliff to complicity to murder.
Kentucky law allows the death penalty in murder cases where there is an “aggravating circumstance” such as robbery, rape or the death of a police officer.
Rand Paul talks faith in Ky. campaign swing
LEXINGTON (AP) — Rand Paul came home for Thanksgiving to talk about his faith in God.
Kentucky’s junior U.S. Senator, who has been traveling the country to support his bid for the Republican presidential nomination and rarely speaks about his faith, plans to fly across the state Monday and Tuesday for several book signings and events to support his lesser known pursuit: re-election to his U.S. Senate seat. And after watching Republican Gov.-elect Matt Bevin preach “vote your values not your party” on his way to a landslide statewide election victory, Paul started his Kentucky tour on Monday talking about his faith.
Paul has three book-signings scheduled on this trip, plus seven other stops in all regions of the state.
On Monday, Paul hit on several topics sure to be issues during his re-election, including bashing the Common Core education standards and calling Kentucky’s expansion of its Medicaid program “misplaced humanitarianism.” Paul said he supports Bevin’s plan to dismantle the state’s health insurance exchange and scale back the eligibility requirements of its Medicaid program that together have given more than 500,000 Kentuckians health insurance in the past two years.
MSHA announces results of October impact inspections
The Mine Safety and Health Administration has announced that federal inspectors issued 231 citations and seven orders during special impact inspections at 11 coal mines and five metal and nonmetal mines in October.
Begun in force in April 2010, the monthly inspections involve mines that merit increased agency attention and enforcement due to their poor compliance history or particular compliance concerns. MSHA conducted impact inspections at mines in Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming.
Here are the details of one inspection:
MSHA conducted an impact inspection Oct. 13-15 at Marigold Mining Co.’s Marigold Mine, a gold ore operation in Humboldt County, Nevada. During the visit, enforcement personnel issued nine citations and orders to the mine operator, including two “unwarrantable failure” findings. MSHA also issued an imminent danger order removing the blasting foreman who was not wearing fall protection while working near a 50-foot tall unexcavated face of exposed ore called “high wall.” Several other violations involved a hydraulic scissor lift, including a damaged electrical conductor and inadequate inspection of the machinery. Since April 2010, MSHA has conducted 1,041 impact inspections and issued 15,343 citations, 1,288 orders and 57 safeguards.
US tourist run over in Puerto Rico after graffiti incident
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Police in Puerto Rico say a 27-year-old tourist from Kentucky has died after being hit by a car while running away from a graffiti mural he was painting.
Police say Jonathan Brown of Louisville was spray-painting a mural along one of the busiest highways in San Juan he noticed a patrol car nearby and fled. Authorities say he was run over as he tried to cross a street near the Baldorioty de Castro highway.
Officials in the U.S. territory say the accident occurred Monday night.
Berea College community holds ‘Love Over Hate’ demonstration
BEREA (AP) — Berea College held a peaceful “Love Over Hate” demonstration in response to accusations of harassment and racial slurs directed toward some of its students.
College spokesman Lavoyed Hudgins says nearly 600 people, including students, city officials and members of the community showed up to stand with the students during the Monday afternoon demonstration.
The Lexington Herald Leader reports demonstrators held “love over hate” signs, chanted “This is what democracy looks like!” and sang the civil rights anthem “We Shall Overcome.”
An administrative committee for the college says incidents of “drive-by racism and homophobia” were directed at students from roads on campus during homecoming weekend Nov. 13 and 14. Some students took their concerns to the Nov. 17 meeting of Berea City Council.
Man charged in deaths of 4 relatives after fire
MURRAY (AP) — A Kentucky man has been charged with murder and other crimes in the deaths of four relatives whose bodies were found after a fire.
Kentucky State Police said Monday in a news release that 21-year-old Pascasio Y. Pacheco Arellano of Mayfield is charged with four counts of murder and one count each of first-degree burglary, first-degree arson and tampering with physical evidence.
Arellano is a nephew of 29-year-old Bulmaro Arellano, who was found dead inside the home that burned Tuesday in Murray. Bulmaro Arellano was found with his wife, 24-year-old Marisol Hernandez, and their two children, who were about 5 and 1½ years old.
Police say preliminary autopsy results indicate Hernandez and Arellano died as a result of gunshot wounds, while it’s believed the children died of smoke inhalation.
Medical examiner says 2nd body found in burnt vehicle
PEMBROKE (AP) — A medical examiner has confirmed that a second body was found in a burnt vehicle discovered in western Kentucky last week.
According to Kentucky New Era, Christian County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Chris Miller says the badly burned bodies of two people were in the car in Pembroke that was found on Thursday. He says detectives are now waiting on a DNA test to confirm the victims’ identities.
As part of the investigation last week, deputies traced the car tags to a Pembroke residence. Upon entering, they found a dead man with an apparent gunshot wound to the chest.
Miller says authorities searched two other nearby homes Friday that could be connected to the crimes.
Miller says investigators know of several people they want to talk to about the slayings.
Evansville riverboat owner plans new on-shore casino
EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) — The owner of Evansville’s casino says it plans to move from its current riverboat docked along the Ohio River to a new $50 million on-shore facility.
The announcement Tuesday for the new Tropicana Evansville casino makes it the first to take advantage of a new state law allowing riverboat casinos to build new on-land casinos on property near their current locations.
Tropicana officials say the new 75,000 square-foot casino will be built between its existing hotels across the street from the current riverboat. Tropicana says it expects construction to start in early 2016 and take at least 18 months.
Indiana legislators approved this year allowing the riverboats to build on-land facilities as Indiana’s casinos have seen big declines in business in recent years because of greater competition from neighboring states.