Press Release

Whitley County Sheriff Dept.

Deputy saves child, father arrested

Around 3:15 a.m. November 19, 2017, Deputy Brian Hensley responded to multiple calls of a potential motorist in need of assistance. Around the one mile point on northbound I-75, Dep. Hensley located an SUV parked in the left lane without any lights on.
Dep. Hensley activated his blue lights, and the male driver reacted by putting his hands out of the window and shouting that he was complying. When Dep. Hensley approached the driver’s window, he noticed that Robert Cook, 28, of Knoxville, Tennessee, was chewing on a green, leafy substance believed to be marijuana.
The driver appeared to be under the influence and was detained. Dep. Hensley returned to the SUV, where a 4-year-old boy was seated in the rear passenger area. In the floorboard was a white crystal substance, which field tested positive as methamphetamine.
Before Dep. Hensley could move the vehicle from the roadway, he was nearly struck by passing vehicles.
Cook stated he had used marijuana and “dabbed.” He was arrested for first-degree possession of a controlled substance (meth), possession of marijuana, tampering with physical evidence and driving on a DUI suspended license. Cook was also charged with endangering the welfare of a minor, first-degree wanton endangerment and first-degree wanton endangerment of a peace officer.
Williamsburg Police Officer J. Fulton assisted by transporting Cook to the Whitley County Detention Center while Dep. Hensley remained with the four-year-old until social services arrived.
During the wait, Dep. Hensley experienced physical affects associated with exposure to the drug fentanyl, which is an increasingly dangerous occurrence among first responders. The four-year-old and Dep. Hensley were medically evaluated at Jellico Community Hospital.
Thank the good Lord someone called this in and an Angel was there to protect this innocent child until Deputy Hensley could arrive. When you think about what could’ve happened…” -Sheriff Colan J. Harrell

Stolen vehicle recovered, “Jane Doe” arrested

Around 2:41 p.m. November 10, 2017, Deputy Brandon Prewitt responded to a suspicious person complaint in the Goldbug community. According to the caller, a woman had been sitting outside the Dollar General store in a newer model Ford Explorer. The caller expressed concern that the driver may have been intoxicated.

When Dep. Prewitt arrived, the woman was in the store. Dep. Prewitt asked Whitley County E911 to perform a search on the vehicle’s license plate. Dispatch reported that the vehicle was identified as stolen from Madison County.

Dep. Prewitt watched the woman exit the store and return to the vehicle. When he approached her, she tried to flee. The woman was uncooperative and refused to identify herself. Dep. Prewitt was unable to locate any items that would identify the woman. She was initially lodged in the Whitley Co. Detention Center as “Jane Doe” and was charged with resisting arrest and receiving stolen property valued over $10,000.

Through cooperation with another law enforcement agency, it is believed that Jane Doe is Carrie B. Durham, 29, of Richmond. Durham is wanted for arrest related to Madison Co. charges. Approximately an hour and a half passed between the time the vehicle was reported stolen and when Dep. Prewitt recovered it.

Dep. Joe Prewitt and Williamsburg police officer Elijah Hunter assisted in the investigation.

I-75 wreck results in felony endangerment and other charges

Around 7 p.m. October 7, 2017, Deputy Jonas Saunders responded to a possible wreck along I-75. Dep. Saunders located a Chevy Cobalt alongside the interstate near the northbound 8 mile point. The passenger side was damaged and the front right wheel rim was in contact with the pavement.

The driver, Crystal Miller, 38, of Cumberland, Kentucky, told Dep. Saunders that the car had overheated. Dep. Saunders sensed the strong odor of alcoholic beverages about the vehicle. In plain view was a bottle of vodka.

Although she was on the shoulder of the northbound lane, Miller told Dep. Saunders that she was returning from Indiana. In the front passenger seat was an eight-year-old, and in the rear passenger area was an adult male, Terry Sibrava, 44, of Cumberland, Kentucky.

Miller was unable to complete field sobriety tests and refused a portable breathalyzer test.

During the investigation, Dep. Saunders located a mixed drink in a cup and three bottles of liquor. Miller eventually admitted to colliding with the rear of a tractor trailer. Dep Saunders also located what’s believed to be marijuana in door compartment where Sibrava was seated.

Miller was arrested for the felony offense of first-degree wanton endangerment and endangering the welfare of a minor. She was also charged with DUI and possession of an open alcoholic beverage container in a motor vehicle. Miller’s DUI charge includes an aggravating factor, which was having a child under 12-years-old in the vehicle. Sibrava was arrested for endangering the welfare of a minor, possession of marijuana, possession of an open alcoholic beverage container in a motor vehicle and alcohol intoxication in a public place.

Both were lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center. Social Services responded, and the child was released to the care of a family member. Fortunately, the child did not sustain physical injuries during the collision. Dep. Brian Hensley assisted at the scene.

Man arrested after running from court security officers

On November 7, 2017, Anthony S. Morgan, 34, of Williamsburg, entered the Whitley County Judicial Center, and a court security officer detained him to determine if he was wanted for arrest. When the CSO received notification that Morgan had an active warrant for his arrest, Morgan ran from the building. CSO Chad Foley chased after Morgan, who refused commands to stop.

During the pursuit, Morgan collided with two civilians, who sustained minor injuries. CSO Foley caught Morgan, who continued resisting arrest. Court Security Captain Brian Kirby was forced to deploy his Taser until Morgan could be handcuffed.

Morgan later admitted to being under the influence of narcotics. The two persons Morgan struck while fleeing denied medical treatment. Morgan was transported by EMS to Baptist Health Corbin for evaluation before being lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.

Morgan was arrested on charges of resisting arrest, second-degree disorderly conduct, second-degree fleeing/evading police, third-degree criminal mischief, public intoxication, first-degree wanton endangerment of a police officer, fourth-degree assault and menacing. He was also arrested for contempt of court.

9-year-old’s call for help results in arrests

Around 3 a.m. November 3, 2017, a 9-year-old called 911 when left alone in a Johnny Holler Road residence. According to the child, the mother had been absent for over a day, and the father had left with another child.

Deputy Brian Hensley responded to the residence and worked with social services to arrange for the 9-year-old’s safe keeping.

While Dep. Hensley was conducting his investigation, Kentucky State Police troopers located the mother in a Laurel County motel. State police arrested a male at that location on outstanding warrants. The mother was not arrested at that time.

The mother returned home, and state police responded to a disturbance complaint at the residence. Rhonda Flood, 27, was arrested and charged with public intoxication, second-degree disorderly conduct and menacing.

The next day, Nov. 4, the sheriff’s department responded to a domestic complaint on Johnny Holler Road. Dep. E.J. Miller conducted a traffic stop in the area for a seatbelt violation. The driver, Courtney G. Flood, 35, was identified as the father who abandoned the 9-year-old. In addition to failure to wear seatbelts, he was driving on a suspended/revoked license. A search of the vehicle resulted in the finding of a digital weighing scale and what’s believe to be crystal “ice” methamphetamine.

Courtney Food was arrested by Dep. Brandon Prewitt and charged with first-degree possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, no seatbelt and driving on a suspended/revoked license. Both Courtney and Rhonda Flood were lodged in the Whitley County Detention Center.

The sheriff’s department is continuing the investigation, and additional charges may be added.

Failure to lift off

Around 2 a.m. November 5, 2017, Deputy Brian Hensley responded to the Williamsburg-Whitley County Airport after Whitley Co. E911 dispatchers observed from their office in the airport’s terminal a Ford F150 driving up and down the runway.

A dispatcher watched the truck drive into the fence and become stuck. A man ran from the scene, jumped a guardrail and disappeared into the woods. Dallas Eubanks, of Kentucky State Police, responded with a K9. Williamsburg police officers Mike Taylor and Cody Jeffries also responded.

The man who fled could not be located. It was later determined that he entered the secure area by driving through a gate.

Around 9 a.m. the following day, Dep. Hensley was notified that the subject had returned to the airport. Dep. Hensley responded and made contact with Jonathan Brookshire, 33, of Lexington.

During the investigation, Brookshire stated that he was traveling to Florida and used methamphetamine prior to the initial incident. Brookshire was arrested and charged with second-degree fleeing or evading police, leaving the scene of an accident, first-degree criminal mischief, third-degree criminal trespassing and public intoxication. He was lodged in the Whitley Co. Detention Center.