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Ice and rain to blame for Letcher County Courthouse flood

By: Michelle Heron Email
By: Michelle Heron Email

LETCHER COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) A mix of winter weather and rain are to blame for a flood inside the Letcher County Courthouse.

You typically hear the sound of gavels and testimony inside the Letcher County Courthouse. But Monday the sound of dripping water filled the building’s hallways and offices.

“Between the ice and all the rain we’ve had the water just couldn’t get out and stood on the roof so it found a way through the roof and down into the offices,” Letcher County Judge Executive Jim Ward said.

At least one foot of water leaked through the roof and through two floors before inmates housed in the building’s basement noticed around midnight Monday.

“We had a lot of our inmates come up and help us move files. They swept and got a lot of our ceiling tile already cleaned up,” Ward added.

Thousands of files got wet in the flood, but Ward says they’re all backed up electronically.

“We back up every day. That way if something comes up, you’ve got a back up and you’ve got your files there with you,” Ward said.

Cleanup is now underway and figuring out when court hearings and trials will be rescheduled.

“We had trials set for this morning and had to call those off. We’ve got hearings set for tomorrow and Wednesday and a bench trial Friday. So, I’m not sure how quickly we can get back operational,” Letcher
County Circuit Court Judge Sam Wright said.

No word on when the courthouse will be reopened.

Insurance agents are still working to figure out how much damage was done.

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