Friday, July 19, 2002

Kentucky News Briefs

St. E's workers donate $800,000 for upgrades

        COVINGTON — Employees at St. Elizabeth Medical Center set a record by donating $800,000 from their paychecks to pay for hospital improvements.

        St. Elizabeth, which has hospitals in Edgewood, Covington and Williamstown,

        is among the few hospital systems in the Tristate that regularly asks employees to donate funds. Its first three-year “Vision” drive was started in 1990 and raised $160,000. The most recent one, in 1999, raised $520,000.

        This year, about 80 percent of employees participated.

        Funds raised in the campaign will be used for six projects: an expanded hospice program, a new diagnostic breast health center, an outreach program for at-risk mothers and infants, improved cardiac care, new wellness programs and expanded programs to manage chronic diseases.

Gang watch leads to 3 murder indictments

        LOUISVILLE - A two-year probe into gang activity in a western Louisville neighborhood led to charges against six men Thursday

        that included indictments in three unsolved murder cases.

        Kenneth Parker, 22; Marcus Stallard, 18; Clifford Warfield, 20; and Domonique Coffey, 21, were already in jail when they were indicted Thursday. Wilbert Bethel, 22, was on house arrest but he hadn't been arrested by Thursday afternoon, police said. Police were also looking for DeShawn Parker, 21, Kenneth Parker's brother.

        Louisville Mayor David Armstrong said residents around Victory Park, where police have tracked most gang activity, had been “held hostage” by gangs in recent years.

        “Everybody wants to be safe where they live, both day and night,” Mr. Armstrong said at a news conference. “Today is a brighter day for them, it's a safer day for them.”

        Kenneth and DeShawn Parker and Mr. Bethel were indicted on murder charges in the July 2000 drive-by slaying of 18-year-old LaKnogony McCurley.

        Ms. McCurley was behind the wheel of a car in front of Jewish Hospital when seven bullets fired from a passing car struck and killed her.

        Louisville Police Det. John Tarter called Ms. McCurley's killing a “stepping stone” for the department's investigation into gang activity. He said police began tracking names, suspects and criminal activity after her shooting and were able to link the Parkers and Mr. Bethel to the killing.

        Commonwealth's Attorney David Stengel said he would seek the death penalty for Kenneth Parker at an arraignment Monday.

        Kenneth Parker is being held on a $3 million cash bond, one of the highest in recent memory in Jefferson County, said Debbie Linnig Michals, spokeswoman for Jefferson Circuit Court. The others are being held on $1 million cash bonds.

        More than 40 Louisville police officers spent about 2,000 hours on the investigation over the past two years, officials said.

Ex-detective admits meth, pot charges

        COLUMBIA - A retired state police narcotics detective arrested a year ago on drug charges entered a guilty plea this week to manufacturing methamphetamine and cultivating marijuana.

        Benjamin Hadley reached a plea agreement Thursday. He will serve 10 years in federal prison with no probation, followed by supervised release, court records show.

        Mr. Hadley, 52, was arrested over a year ago after police raided his Adair County farm.

        State police seized 971 marijuana plants, 17 rifles and pistols, a book on firearm silencers, marijuana pipes and bongs, an assortment of pills and a video on hydroponics gardening they say belonged to Mr. Hadley.

Kelco fraud trial could last a month

        LEXINGTON - Attorneys on both sides said the trial involving a Lexington company accused of fraudulently helping terminally ill patients get life insurance policies and selling the policies to investors could take up to a month.

        Three Kelco Inc. executives pleaded not guilty to a 47-count indictment Wednesday that charges them with conspiracy, fraud and money laundering.

        The trial is set to start Feb. 18.

        Also named were Kelco Inc. and a sister company, Genesis Viatical Inc.

        Not guilty pleas were entered for the companies.

        Kelco allegedly helped applicants fake blood tests, avoid medical examinations and falsify documents to obtain life insurance.

Hospital funded even after overdose death

        LOUISVILLE - A mental hospital where a Brooksville 18-year-old died of a drug overdose in June will keep its Medicaid and Medicare funding.

        A federal agency that had threatened to withdraw the funding if the hospital didn't correct several inadequacies made the decision Wednesday.

        Both the Kentucky inspector general, responsible for licensing all state mental health and drug treatment facilities, and Jefferson County police are still inspecting the death at Ten Broeck Hospital.

        Ten Broeck submitted a plan on July 10 to correct what state surveyors had described as “serious deficiencies” after inspecting the hospital after the overdose death of Shawn Smith.

        The inspection showed communications failures between nurses and doctors, failures to make mandatory 15-minute checks and nurses' inability to perform CPR and use emergency medical equipment.

        Mr. Smith overdosed after taking what the hospital said was smuggled methadone, which interacted with prescription anti-psychotics.

Former priest indicted in second Ky. county

        LA GRANGE - A former Roman Catholic priest was indicted in Oldham County Thursday on 14 counts of sexual misconduct, the second indictment against him in less than a month.

        Louis Miller, 71, is facing 14 counts of indecent and immoral practice with another, according to the indictment.

        The indictments say the victims, six boys and a girl, were younger than 15.

        Mr. Miller is scheduled for arraignment today.

        In June, he pleaded innocent to 36 counts of indecent and immoral practice and six counts sexual abuse in Jefferson County.

        Mr. Miller has been accused in 63 of the 154 lawsuits filed against the Louisville Archdiocese in recent months. Plaintiffs claim the church knew about alleged past abuses and failed to take action.

        Mr. Miller worked at seven different parishes since 1956 before retiring in March after the allegations became public. Archdiocese officials say he has been banned from public ministry and stripped of his collar and that he has been living in a retirement home for priests in Louisville.

        Mr. Miller entered the innocent plea at his arraignment in Jefferson County District Court and posted $100,000 bond. A pretrial hearing has been set for July 29.

        He faces one to 10 years for each of the 50 counts of indecent and immoral practice and one to five years for each count of sexual abuse in Jefferson County.

        Mr. Miller is the first priest to have criminal charges brought against him in Louisville since victims began voicing their allegations of abuse in mid-April.


Twitty awaits apology from city
All things considered, many skip long trips
City schools have many top jobs to fill
Advocates: UC study validates drug court
Lawyer: Erpenbeck may plead guilty
Aviation heritage area proposed by lawmakers
'Big Bearcat Gig' to raise money for UC scholarships
Boy's hat helps identify suspect
Federal funds in works for city
Fight at cinema prompts security
Florist settles on beige
Former society editor, 87, dies
Graeter's ice cream featured in story
Isley Brothers plan to perform
Obituary: Harvey B. Fuller, 84, supported arts
Tristate A.M. Report
West Nile Health department monitors wildlife
HOWARD: Some Good News
British Festival puts accent on fun
Butler sales-tax increase losing steam
Commissioners take on Cinergy for Edgewood schools
Concern over Shayler Creek draws a crowd
House panel votes to expel Traficant
Uranium waste may pay off for Tristate
- Kentucky News Briefs
No-camping in parks brings protests
Patton: Growth panel should seek funding
Senate candidate opens Kentucky headquarters
Sludge spill victims stay put, but mostly out of necessity
Talks on Ky. budget proposed
Utility costs less than sanitation