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Former Martin Mayor and others arraigned in federal court

They are accused of defrauding the government, but they say they are innocent.

Our cameras were not allowed inside the United States Courthouse in Pikeville Tuesday, but inside that federal courtroom former Martin Mayor Thomasine Robinson, her daughter Rita Whicker, and two other women, Ginger Halbert and Ethel Clouse, answered to charges that they misused federal money and defrauded the Social Security Administration.

All four women denied the charges each entering not guilty pleas.

Thomasine Robinson's step-son James Robinson was also in court Tuesday morning on charges of retaliation against two of the witnesses in his step-mother's grand jury case

Investigators told the court two men accused James Robinson of threatening them in separate instances at the McDonald's in Martin.

James Robinson's attorney argued there was not enough evidence to support the claims, but the judge ruled there was probable cause for the charges to stand.

All four women are scheduled to go on trial January 6 in Pikeville.

James Robinson's next hearing is November 19 in Lexington.


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