Four Indicted On Election Fraud Charges

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Four eastern Kentucky officials were indicted on Thursday on federal charges that they misappropriated public funds to influence the outcome of an election last year.

Knott County Judge-Executive Randall Clinton Thompson, deputy judge-executives John Mac Combs and Phillip G. Champion, and county employee Ronnie Adams allegedly distributed thousands of dollars worth of government-owned gravel, asphalt and building materials to private citizens in an effort to get them to vote for Thompson during last year's election.

The four didn't immediately return a telephone call seeking comment Friday morning.

State Auditor Crit Luallen, whose office helped in the investigation that led to the federal indictment, called it "a sad day for Kentucky" when public corruption charges are brought against government officials.

"It should be reassuring to all Kentuckians that state and federal officials can work closely together on cases like these, ensuring that allegations of misconduct are fully investigated," she said.

Eastern Kentucky has had a history of federal election fraud investigations. The previous Knott County judge-executive, Donnie Newsome, served 16 months in federal prison after being convicted of election fraud in 2003.

Federal prosecutors have also pursued cases in a number of other Appalachian counties, the latest of which was Bath.

More than a dozen people were charged in an alleged scheme in Bath County to pay impoverished residents to vote for particular candidates in a local election. Among those charged were candidates for judge-executive, county attorney and sheriff, all of whom were either convicted or pleaded guilty.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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  • by thacker Location: knott co on May 15, 2009 at 06:40 PM
    open the knott co jail and put then in it
  • by confused Location: floyd co on May 15, 2009 at 06:39 PM
    let them go to jail oh no i forgot the jail is closed the money went for horse trails
  • by xxx on Dec 5, 2007 at 07:53 AM
    Hope Randy Thompson gets the same as Donnie Newsome "Fed Pen" its only fair, Randy is a crook just like every body else holding office in Knott Co. the old saying its who you know and who you (edited) in Knott Co.
  • by Drum on Dec 4, 2007 at 04:16 PM
    I think the State ought to give everyone in Knott Co. $50 to move out and turn that place into a Nuclear waste site.
  • by Dorothy and Charlene on Dec 4, 2007 at 10:48 AM
    As the daughters of Homer Sawyer, one of the alleged Knott Co. Mafia, we nearly wet our pants with laughter at this insane accusation! I'm so gald that you think he has so much clout. You actually think your judge did so much for Knott Co.!? Do you not remember the days when there was no garbage system, no local parks for the kids, no 911 system? Also, in his time in office, he helped build the jail, the Caney Creek Center, the Animal Shelter, the Human Resources Center. He also helped establish the ambulance service which Knott Co. is no longer in control of. These are just a FEW of his accomplishments. Most of all, there was never a hint of wrongdoing while he was in office much less an indictment. More importantly, he did all these without putting the county into debt and even left office with a surplus. How short our memories are! We are proud of his service to Knott Co., but even more so as our father.
  • by JC Location: Madison County on Dec 4, 2007 at 10:44 AM
    STEVE from IRVINE, Get a clue you (edited)!! Democrat/Republican has nothing to do with it. It is called stupidity! As good ole Forrest Gump says, stupid is as stupid does. If you don't like the democrats in Kentucky, then move to Texas with the Bush family and take your ignorant governor Fletcher with you! And by the way, I really hope you like paying your high gas prices. They were fine until your wonderful President Bush took office.
  • by Ashamed on Dec 4, 2007 at 10:00 AM
    Once again, Knott Co. is the laughing stock of the state. All of you who have made such wonderful comments about Randy and his buddies are probably the ones who have had their private driveways paved (which is illegal in case you didn't know). Do you really think you can outsmart the FEDS? Do you really think they would waste their time and money to investigate something that is perfectly leagal? Wake up! How ignorant are you if you think the so called Knott Co. Mafia can influence the Feds? I think people such as you, T.J. from Kite, should be VERY careful about slandering people or else you may find yourself in jail along side your judge. If Randy and his buddies are truly innocent, it will be proven in FEDERAL Court. I think all the citizens of Knott Co. should try to become truly infromed about the status of the economy of the county. I think you may be suprised. Don't just rely on newpapers for information. Go to the courthouse and request the budget. It's public records!
  • by truth will set you free Location: knott on Dec 4, 2007 at 07:52 AM
    I am glad to hear Phillip is a christian.Maybe he will tell the truth when they all go to trial.To the person that mentioned Jake--Let the dead be they can not defend themselves.Shame on people that know blacktop was spread on private drives.To the person that says it has always been done.Prostution and adultry has been here as long as time,but that don't make it right
  • by Amy Location: Hindman on Dec 4, 2007 at 07:00 AM
    I think that Phillip Champion did absolutly nothing ! He is a good man ! He has done so much for the comunity and you people are treating him like he is mud ! As much as he brought you ! I mean you can't just do that to his life , his children , his friends , his family , his job ! He is making people's life better and you are making it worse !
  • by jordan Location: hindman on Dec 4, 2007 at 06:55 AM
    I think Phillip Champion shoudn't have went to jail...because he is a loyal and trustworthy person.


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