Former Breathitt County sheriff pleads guilty to vote buying charges

By: Katie Roach Email
By: Katie Roach Email

Former Breathitt County Sheriff John L. turner gave up his right to a trial Wednesday morning in Lexington federal court.

He was re-arraigned and pleaded guilty to federal vote buying charges.

During April and May of 2010, federal prosecutors say several people were involved in a vote buying scheme in Breathitt County.

John L. Turner is the ninth person to plead guilty or be convicted in the case.

In Lexington Wednesday, he admitted to a federal judge that he is guilty of count 2 in the indictment which says he and former Breathitt County Schools Superintendent Arch Turner "knowingly conspired to pay or offer to pay for a person voting in the election," and that Arch Turner "withdrew cash from his bank account to be used for vote buying."

Arch Turner pleaded not guilty earlier this year, his bond was revoked in May after court documents say he violated the conditions of his pretrial release by having contact with his co-defendant John Turner.

An investigator for the state says Arch Turner showed up at John Turner's house to discuss case strategy and story alignment.

John Turner was then wired by investigators for a later meeting requested by Arch Turner where they again discussed the case.

Arch Turner will remain in custody until his trial date set for July 30th.

John Turner will remain out of jail on his previous bond agreement until his sentencing later this September.

The judge said his maximum sentence will be five years.

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