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Man arrested after Pulaski Co. campers come under fire

By: Tim Johnston Email
By: Tim Johnston Email
Investigators in southern Kentucky arrested a man after a frightening ordeal for a group of campers.

Paul M. Nicely

Aside from the occasional car passing by on Kentucky Highway 934 it's pretty quiet, today, but Sunday night several shots rang out and they're said to have gone flying right over the heads of four adults and five kids. One of which was an infant.

"The families (go) out and just want a quiet, relaxing holiday weekend, and something like this happens it's honestly very alarming," said Detective Steve Cundiff of the Pulaski County Sheriff's Office.

The victims did not want to talk on camera, but told deputies that Paul Nicely, a neighbor, fired three different guns, three different times, but all in their direction.

"The first time was apparently with a rifle, the second time was with a shotgun of some type, and the third time he came back was with a handgun," described Detective Cundiff, adding that between each weapon Nicely was said to be riding back and forth on his dirt bike.

"They were actually able to see, hear, and feel the shot going through the trees," Detective Cundiff said of the victims' descriptions.

When deputies got to the scene Nicely sped off on his dirt bike, and later fled on foot forcing deputies to chase him down twice. Eventually they used their taser to stop Nicely, but the report says he continued to resist arrest. The deputies say they had to use the taser four times.

"He wasn't very cooperative," stated Cundiff.

Several neighbors did not want to go on camera, but one man said he knew Nicely had several guns, adding that it wasn't uncommon to hear the 57-year-old man fire off rounds down on his property. However, the neighbor didn't know just how large of a weapons cache Nicely had collected.

"This is quite a collection. It is," said Detective Cundiff standing in a room where 61 of Nicely's guns were laid out to be catalogued. In the armory of weapons, deputies found assorted rifles, shotguns, and handguns ranging from old to new and from small calibers to a large .50 caliber rifle.

No one was injured, and investigators still aren't sure what sparked the shooting. Nicely was charged with nine counts of wanton endangerment, fleeing and evading with a vehicle, fleeing and evading on foot, and resisting arrest.

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