Man accused of murdering 87-year-old pleads not guilty

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - The man charged in Lexington's most recent murder plead not guilty during a video arraignment on Thursday.

Cory Don Etherington, 32, was arraigned Thursday afternoon in Fayette District Court for murder in the beating death of an 87-year-old man.

John Tully died two days after the attack on July 11, outside his home at the Old Farm Apartments on Appian Way.

Police would not say what they believe led up to the attack, but did say Etherington and the victim knew each other.

On Wednesday, detectives charged Etherington with Tully's murder.

Etherington has been in the Fayette County Detention Center since July 12. He was arrested a day after the attack for a probation violation.

Etherington was in jail on the probation violation when police charged him with Tully's murder on Wednesday. The coroner says Tully died from blunt force trauma. It was Lexington's 12th homicide of the year.

According to an arrest citation, Etherington was arrested on February 18, 2013 after police said he punched his grandmother in the eye.

When police arrived, they said Etherington was in the driveway saying "shoot me in the head". They said they used a taser on him and arrested him. According to that citation, he told police he heard voices telling him to punch his grandmother. He pleaded guilty to two counts of assault 4th and was sentenced to 12 months, that's after he had already served about six months waiting on sentencing.

A judge put Etherington on probation in January 2014. In June, a probation officer requested the court issue an arrest warrant for Etherington and revoke his probation. She said he contacted her on April 15 and told her he had taken a bus to West Palm Beach, Florida to "get away".

That probation officer said she had not given him permission to leave the state and told him to report back to her immediately. She said he told her he wouldn't be able to come back until he got a disability payment on May 3.

On June 12, that officer filed paperwork saying he had absconded and concealed his whereabouts from her. Police arrested Etherington on the probation violation charge on July 12, the day after Tully was attacked.

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