Press Release

Whitley County Sheriff Dept.

Two stolen vehicles recovered – five arrested, one cited

On February 21, 2017, Whitley County E911 received information about a stolen vehicle. K9 Deputy Brian Hensley located the Pontiac G6 at the described location. Upon arrival, several people fled from the residence, including two jumping from a second story window.
Dep. Jonas Saunders immediately started travelling to K9 Dep. Hensley’s location. Williamsburg K9 Officer Elijah Hunter also responded to assist in efforts to apprehended those who fled.
Dispatchers confirmed the described Pontiac was stolen in Whitley Co., and a second vehicle, a silver Honda Civic, was reported stolen from Tennessee.
Five persons were arrested, and K9 Dep. Hensley is continuing the investigation. Those arrested were:
Dexter Lawrence Fitzpatrick, Jr., 28, of Jellico, TN
Jonathan Nathan Thornton, 26, of Williamsburg
Joseph Lee Ellison, 35, of Jellico, TN.
Heather Nicole Bowlin, 29, of Williamsburg
Joshua K. Overbay, 29, of Jellico, TN
Fitzpatrick was charged with second-degree fleeing or evading police (on foot) and receiving stolen property under $10,000.
Thornton was charged with receiving stolen property under $10,000.
Bowlin was charged with receiving stolen property under $10,000.
Ellison was arrested related to a bench warrant, and he was charged with giving an officer a false name, tampering with physical evidence, illegal possession of a legend drug and receiving stolen property under $10,000. Ellison was placed in a cruiser and after afterward a search of the rear section of the cruiser revealed needles and drugs.
Overbay was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear and charged with second-degree fleeing or evading police (on foot), resisting arrest and receiving stolen property under $10,000. The resisting arrest charged stem from Overbay’s refusal to comply with a deputy’s orders.
Jamie Hoover, 28, of Williamsburg, was transported to the hospital for injuries sustained while jumping from the second story window. Because he required medical treatment, Hoover was cited for second-degree fleeing or evading police and public intoxication.

Two women arrested for burglary

Around 11 a.m. February 23, 2017, Chief Deputy Tim Baker received information that persons were unlawfully inside a property in the Goldbug community. According to the caller, the same black Chrysler 300 sedan seen at that time had been seen at the property before items were previously reported missing.
When Chief Dep. Baker arrived, he encountered two females inside a residence.
Chief Dep. Baker arrested Nancy Michael, 37, and Felisha Earls, 27, both of the Canadatown community. Each was charged with third-degree burglary. Both were lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.

Deputies respond to firetruck wreck

First responders are in danger the moment they begin responding to an emergency. Sadly, public servants seeking to protect the public or their property are subject to injury and death while trying to reach those in need.

On February 23, 2017, Sergeant Todd Shelley and Detective John Hill responded to the wreck of a Woodbine Fire Department firetruck. The wreck occurred on Louden Road, which is located off of Hwy 92E. The firetruck was occupied by two firefighters and was en route to assist a fellow agency combatting a structure fire.

Two firefighters were injured and transported to Baptist Health Corbin. Neither suffered serious injuries.


Woman arrested for resisting arrest, fighting officers

Around 2 p.m. February 20, 2017, Shannon Fox Hamblin, 42, of Rockholds was in Whitley County Circuit Court before Judge Paul Winchester for a bond revocation hearing. The bond was revoked for absconding probation supervision and for drug test result indicating the presence of methamphetamine.
Judge Winchester determined Hamblin was in contempt of court and ordered her to jail. She became very upset and said she would not go to jail. Court Security Officer David Engle attempted to control the situation, and she refused to comply. Head of court security, Brian Kirby, and Bailiff Ed Traveny responded to assist.
Hamblin was extremely combative and challenged officers to shoot her before she’d go back to jail. Hamblin had to be physically taken by the three men out of the courtroom and could be heard shouting while escorted to a holding area even after the courtroom door was closed.
In the holding area, Hamblin continued to resist and had to be taken to the ground to be handcuffed. She continued to resist, kicking one of the officers and causing injury. Due to her combativeness, Williamsburg Police were requested to assist in her transport to jail. She resisted efforts to place her into the cruiser and then requested medical evaluation.
Williamsburg Detective Bobby Freeman requested Whitley Co. EMS. She was transported to Baptist Health Corbin, where two court security officers stayed with her until she was discharged and lodged in the Whitley Co. Detention Center. Hamblin was arrested for contempt of court and charged with second-degree assault on a peace officer, resisting arrest, second-degree disorderly conduct and public intoxication.
WKYT obtained video of the incident, which can be viewed on their website:

Gun theft leads to meth bust at motel

Around 3 a.m. February 18, 2017, K9 Deputy Brian Hensley responded to a report of a stolen handgun at a Hwy 25S residence. The homeowner stated that he allowed a female into his home because she claimed to have been beaten by her boyfriend and was seeking a place to spend the night. According to the homeowner, the woman followed him into a bedroom and stated that she was a prostitute. He said that when he declined her advance, she left. After she left, he noticed a nightstand drawer was open and a .38 caliber revolver was missing.
The man could not name the female but provided Dep. Hensley with a physical description. On Feb. 19, Williamsburg Police Officer Cody Jeffries contacted Dep. Hensley regarding a woman matching the description of the gun thief. Dep. Hensley located her at the Budget Inn Motel.
The 39-year-old female showed signs of injury. She admitted to stealing the handgun but said she had sold it.
Dep. Hensley and Officer Jeffries went to another motel room, where they made contact with Travis Partin, 34, of Jellico. During a search of the room, approximately eight grams of methamphetamine were found hidden under the bathroom sink. Several needles were found hidden in the toilet tank. A .22 caliber Colt Peacemaker revolver was found hidden in the motel wall. Partin denied that the items were his and stated that they all belonged to the female.
The female was transported by ambulance to a nearby hospital for treatment due to her injuries. Partin was arrested and is charged with possession of a handgun by a convicted felon, first-degree possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.
Dep. Hensley is continuing the investigation.

WANTED – Milford David Osborne

Milford David Osborne, 43, of the Woodbine community, is wanted for arrest after being indicted on charges of fourth-degree controlled substance endangerment to a child and manufacturing methamphetamine.

An indictment warrant for Osborne was issued in October 2016. He is believed to be residing in the Woodbine community.

Osborne was originally arrested in June 2016.The sheriff’s department received information that meth was being manufactured at a tent on Barton Hollow Road. Prior to law enforcement’s arrival, Whitley County EMS transported a female and newborn from that location to Baptist Health Corbin.

Anybody with information of Osborne’s whereabouts is asked to contact Whitley Co. E911 at (606) 549-6017. Sergeant Jeff Anderson is the lead investigator.

Photo courtesy of Whitley County Detention Center.

Crime Alert – Fifth Street/Barton Mill Road areas (Corbin)

Law enforcement is encouraging residents in the Fifth Street and Barton Mill Road areas of Corbin to be extra vigilant after a series of property crimes. The incidents have mostly occurred during the day.

On February 15, 2017, Deputy James Tabor investigated a break in. An older model grey Chevrolet truck was reportedly seen at the residence around the time that the crime occurred.

The Sheriff’s Department and Constable Ron Bowling are increasing patrols in the area. Anyone with information of any crime in that area is asked to contact Whitley County E911 at (606) 549-6017. In case of emergency, always dial 911.

Arrest made in arson case

On February 15, 2017, Deputy James Tabor arrested 50-year-old Teresa Bunch after a Hwy 904 area resident obtained a warrant for her arrest, accusing Bunch of first-degree arson. Bunch was located in the Woodbine community and lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.

The homeowner obtained the warrant for Bunch’s arrest after a January 2, 2017 fire destroyed his residence. According to the homeowner, Bunch threatened to burn the residence before the fire occurred.

Dep. Tabor responded to the scene and is investigating the incident. Additional charges by law enforcement may be possible.

Man wanted by federal officials & one other arrested

Around 11:45 p.m. February 9, 2017, deputies James Tabor and Joe Prewitt and federal law enforcement went to a Hwy 92E residence near Reese Creek.
Jerry White, 39, was wanted by federal officials and successfully apprehended at that location. Another man, Jamie Powers, 47, was with White and also arrested.
At the residence was a strong chemical odor. Components used in the manufacturing of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia, including needles, were found in the residence.
A one-step meth lab was later found under a bed mattress.
White was lodged in the Laurel County Correctional Center as a federal prisoner. He now faces charges in Whitley County for manufacturing methamphetamine, tampering with physical evidence and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Powers was lodged in the Whitley Co. Detention Center. He is charged with manufacturing methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Dep. Tabor is continuing the investigation.

Wanted – Considered armed & dangerous

michael-morrisMichael A Morris, 53, of Sandy Ridge Road in the Devil’s Creek community, is wanted for arrest. His charges include first-degree assault and first-degree unlawful imprisonment.

Around 2 p.m. February 5, 2017, Deputy Joe Prewitt was notified that a female had been shot two times and beaten. The female said she had been beaten and shot the day before but Morris kept her from seeking help. The victim said that when Morris left the location, she was able to contact 911.

Morris is reportedly known to carry a firearm and should not be approached. Anyone with information of his whereabouts or who believes they have seen Morris should contact Whitley County E911 at (606) 549-6017. In case of emergency, always dial 911.

Morris, pictured here, is approximately five feet and 11 inches tall and weighs around 255 pounds.

As of 3:30 p.m. February 6, the victim is considered to be in “stable” condition. She was transported by Whitley Co. EMS to Baptist Health Corbin and later transported by ambulance to the University of Kentucky Medical Center.