News in Brief
Anti-DUI tweet alludes to prison rape during Super Bowl
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky State Police have apologized for a Super Bowl-themed tweet aimed at discouraging drunken driving that referenced prison rape.
News outlets report the official state police account tweeted “Enjoy watching Rob Gronkowski (TE) play but if you drink & drive … your tight-end may end up in jail!” on Sunday night, accompanying the post with a gif of a dropped soap on a rope. Gronkowski is a tight end for the New England Patriots, who eventually lost to the Philadelphia Eagles.
The tweet, which remained up for nearly two hours, drew condemnation from Kentucky’s Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, who called for an apology.
The agency later posted a statement , saying “making light of sexual assault is never acceptable,” and apologized especially “to the victims of these heinous crimes.”
Website to help in Ky.’s fight against opioid abuse
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — State officials have announced an online tool to join Kentucky’s fight against opioid drug abuse.
Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration says the website — FindHelpNowKY.org — allows people to search in real-time for a local substance use disorder treatment center.
The new tool will be promoted as part of the governor’s “Don’t Let Them Die” campaign, which seeks to bring awareness to the opioid crisis.
Findhelpnowky.org acts as a search engine for people seeking a treatment facility for themselves or family members. People can find facilities based on location, facility type and type of treatment needed. The search results also identify which facilities have openings for patients.
The website is funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Former jailer in Ky. pleads guilty to inmate assault
LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — A former deputy jailer in Kentucky has pleaded guilty in federal court to assaulting an inmate.
Twenty-eight-year-old Jarrod Allen Lucas entered the plea Friday in federal court in Lexington.
Prosecutors say Lucas acknowledged kicking an inmate at the Kentucky River Regional Jail in Hazard in October 2011. Lucas says he was present when another guard, Damon Hickman, punched the inmate in the head. The punch broke Hickman’s hand and caused the inmate’s ear to bleed.
Lucas faces up to a year in prison. Sentencing has been set for May 1.
Hickman was sentenced in November to more than 10 years in federal prison in a 2013 beating death of another inmate at the jail.
Three other former deputies have been convicted of inmate assaults at the jail.
6 new scholarships offered for high school athletes
LEXINGTON (AP) — The Kentucky High School Athletic Association says it has paired up with the state Department of Agriculture to offer six new scholarships for high school athletes who plan to study agriculture.
The athletic association said in a statement that the six $1,000 awards will be presented in March to three males and three females who are named as the 2018 Kentucky Ag Athletes of the Year. The one-time scholarships will be awarded to seniors who plan to study agriculture at an institution of higher learning.
Interested students must complete an online application that includes an essay about balancing agricultural responsibilities with athletic participation by Feb. 26
Scholarships will be financed through voluntary donations from Kentucky drivers who buy or renew farm vehicle license plates.