Whitesburg KY

Assault victim says two men responsible for park damage

This Chevy Blazer was used to vandalize the Thornton community park, police say.

This Chevy Blazer was used to vandalize the Thornton community park, police say.

Preliminary hearings are set for later this month for two Letcher County men accused of vandalizing a community park at Thornton.

Ronald Brian Adams, 20, of 610 Yonts Fork, Jackhorn, and Joshua L. Sizemore, 20, of 62 Sizemore Drive, Premium, were arrested March 3 after police linked the men to an assault case.

Letcher County Ranger Sean Blair said the victim of an assault by Adams and Sizemore told police the two men told him they had vandalized the Tom and Pat Gish Park at Thornton. A second man, Tom Collins of Mayking, also told police that Adams and Sizemore were responsible for the damage to the park.

Sean Ihla of Ermine suffered serious injuries after he was beaten in the face and head with a metal socket wrench. Ihla told police Sizemore beat him with the wrench and that Adams grabbed Ihla from behind and choked him, injuring Ihla’s neck. Ihla told police about the park vandalism while making a taped statement to Letcher County Deputy Sheriff Michael Burton.

Blair said Adams and Sizemore entered the park on Feb. 16 or Feb. 17 by driving a green Chevy Blazer through a locked gate, damaging and destroying the gate. Blair said the two drove the vehicle on park ground and the walking track as well as knocking over a port-apotty, causing damage of more than $500.

Blair said the license plate holder left at the park matched perfectly to the Blazer police recovered from the home of Travis Toler of Sergent, where Sizemore left it after the vandalism.

Collins told authorities that Sizemore was driving the vehicle when the damage was done to the park, and that Sizemore hid the vehicle on Sergent because two of the vehicle’s tires were flattened when it ran over the chain-link fence. Collins said Sizemore drove the vehicle through the fence after he became angry with Collins’s estranged wife, who has since returned to her home in Indiana.

A preliminary hearing is set for 2 p.m. on March 30 in Letcher District Court for Adams and Sizemore in the park vandalism case. The men are charged with second-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespassing.

A preliminary hearing is set for 1 p.m. on March 11 in the assault case, in which Adams is charged with complicity to seconddegree assault and Sizemore is charged with seconddegree assault.

Adams and Sizemore remain in the Letcher County Jail where bond is set at $5,000 each for the assault case and $5,000 for the vandalism case.

The Letcher County Sheriff ’s Department and the Kentucky State Police assisted in the vandalism case. Burton has charge of the assault case.

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