Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

May 1, 2013

11:05 MORNING UPDATE: Testimony of former BCSO deputy continues

Glasgow Daily Times


Joseph Adam Minor, originally indicted by the government and now a cooperating witness in the deprivation of rights trial against Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton, deputy Aaron Bennett and drug task force detective Eric Guffey, finished his direct examination testimony in court Wednesday morning and Eaton's attorney, J. Guthrie True, has begun cross examination of Minor.

Over the last two days of court, Minor has testified to U.S. Department of Justice civil rights prosecuting attorney Sanjay Patel that defendants Eaton, Bennett and Guffey have lied about the events surrounding the arrest of Billy Randall Stinnett on Feb. 24, 2010, and Minor originally participated in their lies. Stinnett was not combative and was already in handcuffs when Minor, Eaton and Bennett began hitting and kicking Stinnett while Guffey watched, Minor alleged. Eaton encouraged Minor to write false statements in a BCSO report about the incident, and give false testimonies, according to Minor's allegations. He was intimidated into lying, Minor said.

"I would have been fired or worse," Minor said. "I don't know what [Eaton's] capable of."

During cross examination, True has reviewed many statements Minor has made over the last three years under oath in Barren District Court and before a Barren County Grand Jury. Minor lied at least five times in grand jury testimony alone, according to portions of testimony True and Minor have reviewed during Wednesday's cross examination.

"But you're telling us what you said in this courtroom, under the same oath, is true," True said.

True asked Minor if it was fair for the courtroom and the jury to conclude that if Minor would lie to a grand jury of his community members that he swore to protect and serve, then he would be "willing to lie to jury of strangers?" Minor told True that no, that would not be a fair conclusion.