Tue, May 22, 2018 01:12 PM
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 issue

Inez feud to play out in front of grand jury
Cast of ‘characters’ includes mayor, former clerk and city commission members
by Lilly Adkins

INEZ — Several people, including Mayor Rick Penix and former city clerk Sheila Hardin, have been subpoenaed to appear before the Martin County Grand Jury in connection with alleged wrongdoing in Inez’s city government.

The subpoenas, which were also issued to Tonya Delong, Dwayne Crum, former City Commissioner Esther Cassady, current clerk/treasurer Candy Crum and current City Commissioner Ann Maynard, order the recipients to appear before the grand jury on June 26.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Anna Melvin, whose office issued the subpoenas, said Tuesday that she could not disclose any information concerning the case because it was still pending before the grand jury.

Candy Crum’s subpoena reportedly asked her to bring minutes books, ordinance books and payroll summaries for all city employees.

Maynard requested an investigation last year after she discovered what she believed to be altered minutes and ordinances. Maynard also alleges that there were forged checks written for contract labor to three individuals who didn’t work for the city during the time they were supposed to have been paid for the work. Three of the checks were reportedly stamped as cashed in the Martin County Clerk’s Office.

One person whose name was used on a check was Michael Copley, who allegedly told Kentucky State Police investigators that Penix attempted to bribe him into saying that he worked for the city. Landy Davis and Paul Harrison Muncy also allegedly had checks cashed in their name for what was supposed to have been contract labor. Davis reportedly was in another state at the time her check was cashed.

Each of the checks was reportedly signed by Penix and former city commissioner Cassady.

Hardin has also been accused of giving herself a pay raise illegally. During a two-day meeting earlier this year, Hardin was given the opportunity to present proof of her wage increase but was unable to satisfy the commission. Hardin’s wages were returned to what the commission determined was her correct pay rate.

Maynard alleges that Hardin has filled up the tank of her private vehicle at the pumps and had also received a check for gasoline on multiple occasions. Hardin has also been accused of purchasing personal items and charging it to the city.

Penix, who was ousted by the commission but recently reinstated by a judge, has been accused of allowing his personal relationship with Hardin to affect his job. He has also been accused of showing Hardin favoritism over other city employees.

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