News Around the State

Newborn baby found dead in trash bag on porch

MANCHESTER, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky State Police are investigating the death of a newborn baby found in a trash bag on the porch of a residence.

A statement from police says police were called to the home in Clay County on Tuesday morning when the body was discovered. Police said the body would be sent to Frankfort for an autopsy that would determine the cause of death.

State police were being assisted at the scene by the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and the Manchester Police Department. No other information was immediately released.

Police: Man, 39, traveled to Ky. to have sex with teen

COLUMBIA, Ky. (AP) — A Tennessee man is accused of traveling to Kentucky to have sex with a 14-year-old girl he communicated with using Snapchat.

Citing a Kentucky State Police release, news outlets report 39-year-old Samuel Hicks was arrested Dec. 8 when he returned to meet the girl.

Police say they had received a complaint Dec. 1, and the girl told officers she had been communicating with him on Snapchat. The release says Hicks came to the girl’s house in Columbia and had sex with her after she met him outside. Police say Snapchat messages confirmed he knew she was underage.

Hicks is from Maryville, Tennessee, more than 160 miles (260 kilometers) from Columbia, Kentucky.

The girl notified police of his return date, leading to his arrest. It’s unclear whether he has a lawyer.

Ky. awarded $59.5 million in transportation grants

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Transportation officials say two fiscal courts in Kentucky and a riverport authority will share federal grants totaling $59.5 million for projects to improve safety, access and mobility for motorists and freight movement.

Officials say the recipients are Calloway County Fiscal Court, Pulaski County Fiscal Court and Owensboro Riverport Authority. The state Transportation Cabinet committed more than one-half the combined project costs and submitted letters of support for the projects.

Officials say Calloway County Fiscal Court was awarded $23 million for reconstruction and widening of U.S. 641 from the Tennessee line to the Clarks River Bridge south of Murray.

Pulaski County Fiscal Court was awarded $25 million to construct a new interchange to connect three major routes.

Owensboro Riverport Authority was awarded $11.5 million to improve and widen Kentucky 331 and Rinaldo Road in Owensboro.

Reward offered for information on stolen guns

OAK GROVE, Ky. (AP) — A $5,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of the people responsible for stealing multiple firearms from a store near the Kentucky-Tennessee state line.

A statement from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives on Monday said the agency and the National Shooting Sports Foundation are each offering a $2,500 reward.

The statement says ATS Tactical Gear in Oak Grove, Kentucky, was burglarized early Wednesday by multiple suspects who were traveling in a white, four-door Chevrolet. The store is a federal firearms licensee and is located on Fort Campbell Boulevard, about a mile from the Tennessee state line.

The statement says anyone with information about the burglary is urged to contact the ATF.

Ky. Democrat says election challenge must be dismissed

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky Democrat elected to the state House of Representatives by one vote says a Republican’s challenge of the election results should be dismissed.

Jim Glenn defeated Republican state Rep. DJ Johnson by one vote in state House District 13. Johnson is challenging the results, asking the Republican-controlled House of Representatives for a recount. He says six voters are ineligible because they did not sign the precinct voter roster. He argues local officials incorrectly rejected 17 absentee ballots.

Glenn’s attorneys filed documents saying the 17 absentee ballots were correctly rejected by a bipartisan election board. They argue it’s impossible to invalidate three of the other six voters because their identities are unknown. The other three were known to poll workers, they said, so there is no risk of fraud.

Former Louisville priest convicted of sexual abuse dies

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A former Louisville Roman Catholic priest who received a medical parole after being convicted of sexual abuse charges has died.

James Schook was convicted in 2014 of molesting a teen altar boy in the 1970s.

The Courier Journal reports the Archdiocese of Louisville confirmed Schook died at age 71 on Saturday.

He was suffering from terminal skin cancer when he was sentenced to 15 years in prison on for convictions on sodomy and indecent or immoral practice.

Schook was released on medical parole last year.

The Archdiocese of Louisville released a statement on Monday extending sympathy to his family. “In praying for the repose of his soul, we also pray for continued healing for his victims and for all victim survivors of childhood sexual abuse,” the statement said.

Man thrown by police booked into jail with neck brace

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A man seen on video being pulled from his car and thrown to the ground by Kentucky police was booked into jail wearing a neck brace.

Louisville Metro Police spokesman Dwight Mitchell said Monday that Chief Steve Conrad has reviewed body camera video and launched an internal investigation into the arrest of 32-year-old Jarrus Ransom.

The Courier Journal reports an arrest citation says Louisville police pulled Ransom over Sunday because of his SUV’s dark window tinting. It says an officer then noticed Ransom wasn’t correctly wearing his seat belt.

Video captured by bystanders shows Ransom then being pulled out of the SUV by three officers and thrown to the ground where another officer punches him.

Ransom was arrested on charges including possessing a controlled substance.

Ky. city removing statue of anti-immigrant editor

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The statue of a Kentucky newspaper editor whose anti-immigrant editorials were blamed for instigating a deadly Election Day riot is being removed from Louisville’s main public library.

The Courier Journal reported that the city of Louisville was moving the statue of George Dennison Prentice to a storage facility on Tuesday.

The statue has been vandalized twice since the deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Mayor Greg Fischer said the Louisville Journal founder pushed a message “that led to the 1855 Bloody Monday riot where at least 22 people were killed.” He said the Prentice statue doesn’t belong outside the library, where education, inclusiveness and compassion are fostered.

Prentice repeatedly called on people to rally against the “most pestilent influence of the foreign swarms” ahead of that year’s election. Protestant mobs with the nativist “Know-Nothing Party” then kept German and Irish Catholic immigrants from voting for Democrats, and then set their neighborhoods on fire, prompting many people to flee Louisville. The economy suffered for years thereafter.

Other “Know-Nothing” riots broke out across the county in those years, part of a larger pattern of anti-immigrant politics before the Civil War.

“You could pull out ‘Catholic’ in the 1850s language and substitute ‘Muslim’ or ‘Mexican’ and it would sound similar to what we’re hearing today,” said A. Glenn Crothers, an associate professor of history at the University of Louisville.

The statue’s fate is undetermined. The city says Prentice’s burial place, Cave Hill Cemetery, wouldn’t take it.