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Local News

  • School absences on rise due to flu

    Runny noses and high fevers are taking the place of textbooks and class attendance at some local schools.

    Illnesses have caused a noticeable increase in absences as flu activity picks up across the state.

    Through March 10, a total of 203 flu cases have been reported for all of Northern Kentucky with 43 of those in Grant County.

  • Fugitives nabbed in Nebraska

    Three fugitives from an Indiana prison are back behind bars after being apprehended in Nebraska almost a week after their escape.

    Jerry Sargent, a 59-year-old from Williamstown, fled the Branchville Correctional Facility near Tell City, Ind., on Friday, March 20, along with Bobby Cockerell III, 31, and Christopher Marshall, 49.

    Grant County authorities were on alert and local schools kept security tight after speculation Sargent might try to see family members living in the area.

  • Spears Lunch Kitchen fills gap for hungry

    Pat Holmquist had driven past the Free Lunch sign outside of 11 S. Main St. in Dry Ridge about 12 times before she decided to come in.

    She was not sure what to expect when she walked into the diner with UK Wildcat blue carpet, an inspirational verse on its menu board and home-cooked food ready to be eaten.

    “I had tears in my eyes,” Holmquist said. “I had never seen anything like this. I had to write to (Larry Spears) and tell him. It was just wonderful. I just thank the Lord for Mr. Spears.”

  • BREAKING NEWS: Three fugitives apprehended in Nebraska

    Three men who escaped Friday from Branchville Correctional Facility were recaptured Thursday in Nebraska. The Perry County News first heard of the details around 8 p.m. from County Prosecutor Robert Collins. Details were still sketchy but the capture of 49-year-old Christopher Marshall, 59-year-old Jerry Sargent and 31-year-old Bobby Cockerell apparently followed a pursuit that lasted more than 10 miles. It was not immediately clear where the men were captured.

  • Manhunt continues

    Local law enforcement are on high alert as a manhunt is on for three fugitives who escaped an Indiana prison on Friday, March 20.

    Authorities believe there is a possibility the escapees could be headed toward Grant County because one of the men, 59-year-old Jerry Sargent, is from Williamstown.

    Sargent, who has family in the area, was serving a 50-year sentence at Branchville Correctional Facility near Tell City, Ind., for robbery and criminal confinement.

    Sargent’s earliest possible release date was Jan. 7, 2023.

  • Prosecutor recalls felon as smart, dangerous

    Jerry Sargent is someone Jim Crawford knows well.

    Crawford, commonwealth attorney for Grant County, prosecuted Sargent 20 years ago in Grant County on numerous charges.

    Sargent, an escapee from a Tell City, Ind., prison, is believed to be one of three men who attacked and robbed three brothers on their Sanders farm Monday morning.

  • Three brothers beaten, left tied inside Carroll County home

    An Indiana prison break has led authorities into Kentucky, where three Carroll County men were beaten and tied up Monday, March 23, in a home on State Hwy. 36 East, just south of Interstate 71.

    Their attackers are believed to be the three men who escaped Friday morning from Branchville Correctional Facility in Tell City, Ind.

  • Lake expansion project gets $540,000 boost

    Vince Gabbert, deputy chief of staff for Gov. Steve Beshear, recently returned home to Grant County bearing an expensive gift.

    The 1994 Williamstown Senior High graduate and son of Rosie and Eddie Gabbert announced a $540,000 state grant that will help inch closer the planned expansion of Lake Williamstown.

    The announcement came in front of a standing-room only crowd at a town hall meeting hosted by the Williamstown Woman’s Club at Williamstown Baptist Church.

  • Deputy charfed with bribery

    A Grant County deputy jailer found himself behind bars.

    Eric Bay Ashcraft, 23, of Dry Ridge, was charged on March 10 with accepting a bribe from an inmate and allowing contraband into the jail.

    Ashcraft had been employed at the jail since June 2008. He resigned before his arrest.

    Ashcraft also was the Grant County High School girls’ soccer coach for the 2008 season. “He has completed his contract and met his duties for this year,” said Grant County Superintendent Michael Hibbett.

  • Legislators put teeth in cyber safety law

    A House bill strengthening and updating laws protecting children from Internet predators moved quickly through the 2009 Kentucky General Assembly.

    House Bill 315, which had 21 cosponsors, including Rep. Royce Adams, D-Dry Ridge, prohibits registered sex offenders from using social-networking Web sites like MySpace and Facebook that are frequented by minors.

    Passage of this bill allows Kentucky prosecutors to criminally charge sex offenders removed from the sites.

    Since May of 2007, MySpace has removed the profiles of 90,000 sex offenders.