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Cases in jail drug scheme move forward
  • Updated

Several defendants connected to the attempt to smuggle drugs into Webster County Detention Center appeared in Webster District Court last Tuesday.

Six individuals, including a deputy jailer, were arrested April 24 while attempting to transfer methamphetamine from one vehicle to another. The drugs and other contraband were intended for two inmates being lodged in the main jail facility.

Another suspect was arrested April 29, but the details of her involvement have not been released.

• A preliminary hearing in the case against Jacqueline Puckett McMillen, the deputy jailer involved in the incident, found enough evidence to refer her to the Webster Grand Jury on June 8.

She faces charges of complicity trafficking in a controlled substance, first-degree official misconduct, and facilitation engaging in organized crime.The charge of complicity first-degree promoting contraband to attempted complicity.

McMillen is accused of retrieving a McDonald’s bag containing the meth, e-cigarettes containing meth, and a meth pipe from her vehicle after being placed there by another defendant.

• Aaron Thomas Lovell waived a preliminary hearing in his case, and will appear before the grand jury June 8.

Lovell is charged with first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance, engaging in organized crime, and driving on a suspended or revoked license. The charge of first-degree promoting contraband was amended to include an attempted qualifier.

Lovell is accused of driving the vehicle to the jail on April 24 for the transfer.

• Enough evidence was found in a preliminary hearing to refer Maggie Ann Miller to the grand jury on June 8.

Miller is charged with first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and engaging in organized crime. The charge of first-degree promoting contraband was also amended to attempted.

Miller is accused of putting the bag of drugs and contraband in McMillen’s vehicle for later retrieval.

• Sufficient evidence was also found to refer William Dennis Barnaby to the June 8 grand jury.

Barnaby faces charges of complicity first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and engaging in organized crime. His charge of complicity first-degree promoting contraband also was amended to attempted.

• The private attorney representing Derrick Robert Dempsey was not present for his appearance, and was continued to yesterday. The outcome of that appearance was not available at press time.

Dempsey is accused of being one of the recipients of the drugs once they were brought into the facility. He also faces similar charges from February when he was arrested for purchasing drugs while out of the Restricted Custody Center for work release.

• Adam Joel Gray did not obtain private counsel, and a public defender was appointed. His case was also continued to yesterday.

Gray is also accused of being a recipient of the drugs and contraband McMillen allegedly intended to bring into the jail.

• Crystal Moore Ferguson entered a plea of not guilty to charges in two cases, one of which is connected to the jail scheme.

The role she allegedly played is unknown, as the Providence Police Department stated that information is key to continuing the investigation.

Ferguson is charged with first-degree promoting contraband, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance, and engaging in organized crime. During her arrest, she was found to be in possession of methamphetamine and was charged with first-degree possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

A preliminary hearing in both cases were scheduled for yesterday.


PRONWS-05-11-22 PRAYER
  • Updated

Providence observes National Day of Prayer

Providence observes National Day of Prayer


Fiscal court approves first reading of budget
  • Updated

Webster County government’s operating budget has jumped nearly 60% over last year’. The spending measure was given first reading in Monday’s fiscal court meeting, with magistrates voting to approve the official document.

The second reading is set for the May 23 session.

The budget stands at $16,280,318.00, which is a significant increase over last year’s. The court approved an appropriations bill of just over $10 million for fiscal year 2021-22.

The difference comes mainly from grants. Those funds were added throughout the year to the current budget, with those budget amendments taking revenues and appropriations to over $14 million. To limit those amendments for the year beginning July 1, the court requested all departments estimate grant revenue to include in their new budgets.

The total grant revenue from a variety of sources is listed as $5,300,728.00. The two largest funds in the budget come from state grants and the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). The county expects to take in $3,013,901.00 from state revenue, and $1,256,916.00 from the federal act.

The money from state grants is being sought for equipment for the road


State Senate Primary
  • Updated

The Journal-Enterprise staff has sent questions to each of the candidates who will be on the ballot for the May 17 primary election. We will run those questions and answers in different races leading up to election day. The questions will appear along with the answers provided verbatim. We have not edited them in any way, including for misspellings or capitalization.

In the cases where an incumbent is involved, he or she will appear first, followed by the challenger. If the race involves challengers, they will appear in alphabetical order.

This week we are featuring the Republican primary race for Kentucky Senate District 4. The winner of this primary will face Democrat Bruce Pritchett in the November General Election.

Robby Mills — Incumbent

Please tell our readers why you would be the best choice for this office:

Many attributes are required to be a successful legislator and to successfully represent the nearly 119,000 citizens that each State Senator represents. I have the political and business experience needed to effectively make the needs of Henderson, Union, Webster, and Hopkins counties known. I have risen to a committee chairmanship (State & Local Government) and I believe I have the ear of Senate Leadership, which means the needs of the district are heard. I have developed relationships throughout the Senate membership, and believe myself to be respected among my colleagues. I understand the citizens of NWKY, I listen and learn, and I answer constiuient concerns. I have served 6 years in the Legislature and beleive this experience serves the citizens well.

What do I believe the state Legislature accomplished during the past four years?

This has been a very tough 4 years, because of the COVID health crisis, not only for the state legislature but for every


House of Representatives primary
  • Updated

The Journal-Enterprise staff has sent questions to each of the candidates who will be on the ballot for the May 17 primary election. We will run those questions and answers in different races leading up to election day. The questions will appear along with the answers provided verbatim. We have not edited them in any way, including for misspellings or capitalization.

In the cases where an incumbent is involved, he or she will appear first, followed by the challenger. If the race involves challengers, they will appear in alphabetical order.

This week we are featuring the Republican primary race for Kentucky House District 12. Both candidates currently serve in the House of Representatives, but redistricting created a new District 4 that includes only Hopkins County. District 12 was altered to include Webster and Crittenden counties, as well as others.

The winner of this primary will face Democrat Alan Lossner in the November General Election.

Lynn Bechler

In a short paragraph, please tell our readers why you would be the best choice for this office.

I am the most conservative candidate in the Primary. I helped write the pro-life bill that the General Assembly passed this year, making Kentucky one of the most pro-life states in


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