News Around the State

Published 1:47 pm Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Sen. Paul files civil suit against neighbor who tackled him

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Rand Paul is suing his neighbor who admitted to tackling Rand as he mowed his yard.

The Bowling Green Daily News reports the Friday complaint seeks compensatory and punitive damages from neighbor Rene Boucher for “physical pain and mental suffering” from the November assault. Boucher says his actions were brought on by Paul repeatedly stacking yard debris near a shared property line. Paul suffered multiple fractured ribs. The lawsuit calls Boucher’s actions “unnecessarily cruel, malicious, willful, wanton” with total disregard for Paul’s “rights, life and liberties.”

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The lawsuit charges that Paul “has been deprived of his enjoyment of life” and left with an increased likelihood of injury and disease. It also asks to prevent Boucher from contacting the Paul family or Boucher “will continue … the pattern of stalking and harassment.”

Boucher pleaded guilty to assaulting a member of congress and was sentenced this month to 30 days in jail and a $10,000 fine.

Distillery owner facing fines after warehouse collapse

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky distillery owner is facing a state fine after one of its whiskey warehouses collapsed.

Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet spokesman John Mura told news media outlets that distillery owner Sazerac will be cited for failing to report the spill of whiskey in a timely manner and for polluting the waters. Mura said Barton 1792 moved quickly Friday to stop the alcohol from entering the creek but didn’t alert the state quickly enough.

Mura said the Division of Enforcement will determine the penalties.

Whiskey flowing into a nearby stream and river killed approximately 800 fish.

Thousands of whiskey barrels in the Bardstown warehouse crashed Friday when part of the warehouse collapsed. No one was injured.

Sazerac spokeswoman Amy Preske said the company is focusing on cleanup and assessment.

Initiative seeks to replace old mobile units with new homes

MOUNT VERNON, Ky. (AP) — Officials say a housing initiative in an eastern Kentucky county will replace old, dilapidated trailers with new energy-efficient homes.

A statement from Kentucky Highlands Investment Corp. says officials will break ground Tuesday in Rockcastle County on the ROOTS initiative, which stands for Recycling Old, Outdated Trailer Sites. The statement says three new homes are being constructed in the first phase of the project, but the goal is to build eight new energy-efficient homes that meet local building codes.

The initiative will use grants provided by JP Morgan Chase and Rural LISC to build housing that will replace older single-wide mobile home units that can be expensive to heat and cool.

Kentucky Highlands Investment Corp. was founded in 1968 to stimulate economic growth in nine southern and eastern Kentucky counties.

Jack Daniel’s prices increase in Europe because of tariffs

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The price of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey will increase in the European Union because of the impact of the bloc’s new 25 percent tariff.

The EU is taxing a range of U.S. imports, including whiskey, in response to President Donald Trump’s decision to slap tariffs on European steel and aluminum.

Phil Lynch, a spokesman for Jack Daniel’s producer Brown-Forman Corp., said Monday that the price increase for the whiskey will take effect over the next couple months as stockpiled cases of it are sold off.

Lynch said European consumers are expected to see price increases of about 10 percent, but the hikes may vary in some markets because local distributors and stores are involved in setting prices.

About one-fourth of Brown-Forman’s revenues are generated in Europe.

Mexico also recently imposed 25 percent tariffs. But Lynch says Brown-Forman recently increased the price of Jack Daniel’s in Mexico so isn’t planning a fresh price hike there soon.

Shares in Brown-Forman, which is based in Louisville, Kentucky, closed Monday down $1.51, or 3 percent, at $48.30.

Federal school safety commission meeting in Lexington

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — The Federal Commission on School Safety is meeting in Kentucky for a listening session with state and local government officials along with members of the public.

The commission was formed by President Donald Trump after the deadly shootings in February at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Seventeen people were killed. The commission conducted its first listening session earlier this month in Washington.

The day will be split into three sessions, with the third portion inviting public comment. The first two sessions will feature roundtable discussions with representatives of state and local government and commission members.

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin is attending the event in Lexington. Marshall County, Kentucky was the site of a school shooting earlier this year that left two students dead and many injured.

Judge rules runner-up will be on ballot after rival dies

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky judge has ruled that a runner-up for a county race will move on to the general election after the candidate who received the most votes died.

News outlets report that Judge Phillip Shepherd ruled Monday that attorney Karen Faulkner will replace Danny Alvarez on the ballot this November. The 43-year-old Alvarez collapsed and died in May, the day after he won the most votes in the Jefferson County District Court judge race.

Faulkner would’ve been excluded from the ballot as it was reserved for the top two candidates. Alvarez’s death would’ve left attorney Tanisha Ann Hickerson as the only candidate. Faulkner took the state Board of Elections to court over the decision.

Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes now must issue a certificate of nomination for Faulkner.

School district pays $550K to resolve sex assault claim

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Jefferson County Public Schools has paid a family $500,000 to resolve a claim of negligence after an autistic teenager with the mental capacity of a 3-year-old was sexually assaulted on a school bus.

The Courier Journal reported the payment citing a document obtained this month under the Kentucky Open Records Act.

The family’s attorney is William McMurry and he says the assault last year was preventable. The boy’s mother had requested a special-needs transportation aide to ride the bus with her son, but the district said no, according to school district emails McMurry provided.

The school district denied liability in settlement documents. District spokeswoman Allison Martin said most buses carrying special-needs students are assigned a “special-needs transportation assistant,” but district policy requires them only if a student has medical needs or requires help getting on or off the bus.