Billy Phillips was arrested for DUI on June first by Trooper B.J. Burton. Police say more than an hour later at the Adair County Detention Center, Phillips lunged at Trooper Burton. Burton then allegedly hit Phillips who then struck his head on either the floor or a wall. Phillips died June 4th at a Lexington hospital. A grand jury returned a reckless homicide indictment Tuesday.
“We just all miss him and hope the truth will come out and justice will be served,” says Billy Phillips’ brother, Larry.
Trooper Burton is on paid administrative leave pending the outcome. He has not been arrested and the only condition on the indictment is that he not have a gun.
State police spokesman Lt. Phil Crumpton says the matter is under investigation. Crumpton says just because there's an indictment doesn't mean guilt or innocence. But Phillips' brother questions if reckless homicide was the right charge.
“I think it could have been a steeper penalty,” says Phillips.
Burton will answer to the charges August 28 in Adair Circuit court.