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Friday, May 10, 2013

Trial Has Been Exhausting For Convicted Barren County Sheriff, Chris Eaton, Who Faces Removal From Office Plus Imprisonment And Fines.

Whole Case has been Exhausting for Sheriff Eaton

It hasn't been long since a federal jury handed out verdicts for Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton, Deputy Aaron Bennett and Barren Edmonson County Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey.
While Sheriff Eaton didn't return our phone calls his attorney Guthrie True says this case has taken a big toll on Eaton.
"I think in large part he was somewhat overwhelmed by both exhaustion and just kind of a sense of shock initially. He's had a little time to decompress since then and is absorbing it. We've talked some about what I think some of the problems are with the verdict on those two counts and what we may be doing, but he's kind of in the process of trying to recover from the physical exhaustion and to just try to help his family through this right now," said True.

For Sheriff Eaton, it was good and bad news.
He was found not guilty for the alleged beating of Billy Randall Stinnett of Glasgow and the alleged cover-up, but was found guilty on two counts of witness tampering.
Eaton's attorney Guthrie True said it doesn't make sense.
"It does appear on its face to be inconsistent. I think there may be some other legal issues frankly with regard to the guilty verdict on those two counts," said True.
True said they plan to make some motions and will continue the fight.

The other two defendants in this case, Bennett and Guffey were found not guilty on all charges.
Guffey's attorney called him a hero.
"Eric got out of that truck and he ran after a meth head who was violent. He's a hero and it's a shame he had to go through this. Thank god the jury saw that he was a good person, did the right thing," said Guffey's attorney Brian Butler.

Bennett's attorney Buddy Alexander is very glad the jury found his client not guilty, but said this whole case was a witch hunt.
"This wasn't about justice. This was about notching your gun when you get a win. That's ridiculous. It's a rough guess, but the federal government has probably spent three million dollars to prosecute this case and you know for what?" said Alexander.
Eaton's sentencing will be August 1st.

The federal sentencing guidelines estimate Eaton would serve between 15 and 21 months.
State law says Eaton would not be immediately required to step down, but could be removed from office by the Commonwealth Attorney once all appeal rights have been exhausted or abandoned and the conviction becomes final.

(hat tip: WBKO).

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