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Judge refuses to release minister accused in triple murder

The minister accused of killing three people inside a Danville store will stay in jail after a judge refused to release him on bond.

Kenneth Keith

DANVILLE, Ky. (WKYT) - DANVILLE, Ky. (WKYT) - Friends and relatives….of both the victims…and the suspect packed the Boyle Country courtroom as the lead detective shared information about the brutal crime.

“All three shot multiple times,” said Det. Kevin Peel.

Detective Peel says bullet casings matching the .22 caliber gun used were found at Kenneth Keith’s Somerset pawn shop. Victim Daniel Smith was known to carry a lot of cash and police said 5th/ 3rd bank money bands were found in a trash bag.

“We recovered 4 moneybands. Used to bind $10,000 together,” Det. Peel said during the bond hearing.

Michael and Angela Hockensmith’s son witnessed the three murders, and told police what he believed the shooter wore, including a fake beard.

“We found clothing that matched the description. But we’re uncertain if that’s what he used at the time,” said Peel, noting that DNA testing and lab work is yet to be finished.

Keith’s attorney maintains police arrested the wrong man but wasn’t surprised bond was denied.

“Which means he’s going to miss birthdays, special events. Somebody’s answer is going to be those three will miss those forever. Yeah, if he didn’t do it he shouldn’t miss those special days,” said Defense Attorney Mark Stanziano.

“This is the only situation in the commonwealth really where no bond is an acceptable order. In this case, multiple shootings, the judge was appropriate in his rulings,” said Commonwealth’s Attorney Richie Bottoms.

Keith will be back in court for a status hearing on February 4th


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