Long prison sentences don’t necessarily mean what jurors and crime victims think they do.
At least five Letcher County residents sentenced to prison in November are due for parole in February, after serving just three months of years-long sentences. Kentucky has been releasing prisoners early because of overcrowding in the state’s jails and prisons. This is in addition to the more than 400 prisoners who were pardoned or whose sentences were commuted by outgoing governor Matt Bevin. Those expected to be released now are through actions of the state parole board.
Samuel Eugene Adkins, 43, John Cioc, 27, Sandra Donnelly, 33, Ethan Daniel Lewis, 19, and Trena F. Triplett, 26, are among 15 Kentucky inmates convicted in Letcher County who are up for release in February.
According to documents from the Kentucky Parole Board and Letcher Circuit Court, Adkins, Cioc, Donnelly, Lewis and Triplett were each convicted of felonies in November.
• Adkins, of Haymond, was convicted November 18 of complicity to first-degree possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine), complicity to third-degree trafficking in an unspecified drug, and complicity to second-degree trafficking in an unspecified drug. He was sentenced to three years in prison and his expected release date was estimated to be May 5, 2021.
• Cioc was convicted November 19 of first-degree wanton endangerment. He was sentenced to five years, and is serving his time in the Letcher County Jail. His expected release date had been January 15, 2023.
• Donnelly was convicted November 18 of third-degree burglary and first-degree possession of methamphetamine, first offense. She is serving her sentence in the Pike County Detention Center and her minimum release date was expected to be June 15, 2024.
• Lewis was convicted November 18 of first-degree possession of methamphetamine and third-degree burglary. He was sentenced to five years and was expected to be out no earlier than March 9, 2023. He is serving his time in the Pike County Detention Center.
• Triplett was convicted on November 15 for flagrant nonsupport and was sentenced to five years. She is serving her time in the Leslie County Jail. Her expected release date had been December 16, 2022.
Several others convicted earlier in the year will also be up for parole in February. Those inmates are:
• Bobby Heiston, 22, convicted July 18 and sentenced to five years for first-degree criminal mischief, first-degree fleeing or evading police, first-degree wanton endangerment, and first-degree wanton endangerment of a police officer. He is being held in the Letcher County Jail.
• Randall G. Napier, 36, convicted July 16 and sentenced to five years for promoting contraband (smuggling into the jail). He is currently serving his time in the Hopkins County Jail. Napier’s expected release date was March 10, 2023.
• Travis B. Toler, 33, convicted April 4 of three counts of second-degree trafficking in a Schedule III controlled substance (first offense) and three counts of first-degree bail jumping. He is serving his time in the Letcher County Jail, and had an expected time to serve until February 1, 2021.
• Harold B. Vanover convicted October 15 of second-degree burglary. He is serving his sentence in the Lewis County Jail and was expected to be released November 24, 2022.
Inmates convicted in prior years who will be released in February are:
• Diana Bentley, 36, convicted May 7, 2013, of second-degree burglary; theft by unlawful taking or disposition of property worth more than $500, but less than $10,000; and first-degree bail jumping. She is currently in the Kentucky Correctional Institute for Women at Peewee Valley.
• Eric Scott Frazier, 37, convicted November 20, 2018, of complicity to receiving stolen property valued at more than $500 but less than $10,000; and complicity to theft of services more than $500 but less than $10,000. He is in Northpoint Training Center in Lexington.
• Connie Fugate, 36, convicted August 3, 2011 of second-degree forgery; fraudulent use of a credit card, more than $500 but less than $10,000; and theft by deception more than $500 but less than $10,000. She is in the Henderson County Jail.
• Denver Gibson, 54, convicted March 4, 2016, of first-degree possession of methamphetamine (first offense), and unlawful possession of meth precursor (first offense). He is in the Letcher County Jail.
• Nellie Mullins, 30, convicted October 3, 2014 of assault under extreme emotional disturbance and first-degree wanton endangerment. She is in the Kentucky Correctional Institute for Women at Peewee Valley.
• Dylan Wright, 28, convicted September 9, 2015 of second-degree burglary and theft by extortion of more than $500 but less than $10,000; and convicted July 6, 2017 of second-degree burglary, tampering with physical evidence, twelve counts of theft by unlawful taking or disposition of an amount greater than $500 but less than $10,000, one count of theft by unlawful taking or disposition of a firearm, and sixteen counts of third-degree burglary.