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Grand jury say woman taking drugs while child was burned by flames



The Letcher County Grand Jury has charged six people in new felony indictments, including a woman accused of endangering her three-year-old daughter while taking drugs illegally when her home caught fire.

The grand jury says that Shelia K. Lewis, 31, of 1404 KY Hwy. 806, Eolia, endangered her daughter when she failed to notice a fire that resulted in the child suffering severe third-degree burns over 20 percent to 30 percent of her body.

The indictment, handed up to Letcher Circuit Judge Sam Wright, says Lewis and the child’s father, Gregory Allen Caudill, had each snorted two crushed pills identified by Lewis as Lortab (Hydrocodone), a Schedule II controlled substance. The jury says that after Caudill went outside, Lewis was the only adult in the residence and failed to notice the fire burning through the wall next to bed in which the child was sleeping even though she was only seven to 10 feet away.

The jury said Lewis didn’t learn about the fire until the child began crying in pain.

Kentucky State Police Detective Jeff Browning testified in the case.

Others indicted are:

• Billie Anne Kincer — arson (second degree), criminal mischief and cruelty to animals (second degree).

Kincer, 44, of 1152 Smoot Creek Road, Whitesburg, is accused of starting a fire that destroyed the dwelling of her former husband, Stephen Kincer, and his family at 388 Licking Rock Branch, Ermine. She is also charged with setting the December 25 fire that destroyed the Kincer home while two family dogs were trapped inside.

Some of the crimes allegedly committed by Kincer apparently were captured on video surveillance. Kentucky State Police Senior Arson Investigator Randy Gabbard testified in the case.

• Terry Wayne Patrick — sexual abuse (first degree, child less than 12 years old).

The grand jury says Patrick, 48, of 24 Little Oak, Apt. 107, Good Water Falls Apartments, Jenkins, subjected a child less than 12 years old to sexual abuse from Nov. 1, 2014 to Dec. 25, 2015.

Jenkins Police Deputy Chief Crystal Davis testified.

• Joshua Machniak — speeding, reckless driving, criminal littering, possession of open alcohol beverage container in vehicle, fleeing/evading police (first degree), two counts of wanton endangerment (first degree), tampering with evidence, criminal possession of a controlled substance (first degree, cocaine), fleeing/ evading police (second degree, on foot), criminal possession of legend drug, criminal possession of drug paraphernalia and being a persistent felony offender.

Machniak, 28, of 43 South Abdoo St., Neon, is charged with driving at speeds of 100 miles per hour or greater through 35 miles per hour school zones and 55 miles per hour zones on Dec. 7, 2014. He is accused of dropping or having a passenger drop a controlled substance on the highway, and with having an open alcohol beverage container in his vehicle. The grand jury says he disobeyed a direction to stop while in his vehicle that was given by an officer, and endangered Elizabeth Ross and Rodney Rudd, his passengers. Machniak is also charged with disobeying an order to stop given by Kentucky State Trooper Brandon Burton and with fleeing on foot.

Kentucky State Trooper Brandon Burton testified in the case.

• Rodney Rudd — criminal littering, tampering with evidence, illegal possession of legend drug and controlled substance not in its original container.

The grand jury says on Dec. 7, 2014, Rudd, 29, of 7 Church St., Neon, threw a green plastic pill bottle with several pills in it out of the passenger window of an automobile being pursued with emergency lights and siren by Kentucky State Trooper Brandon Burton.

Kentucky State Trooper Brandon Burton testified.

• David Allen Bentley — four counts of false statement to obtain unemployment benefits over $100 and being a persistent felony offender.

Bentley, 34, of P.O. Box 97, Jackhorn, and 2216 Jet Drive, Jackhorn, is accused of making a false statement to obtain unemployment benefits in October 2008, November 2008, December 2008 and January 2009 by falsely reporting that he had been laid off by his employer when he had been terminated for cause.

Emma Wireman of the Kentucky Division of Unemployment Benefits testified in the case.



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