Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

May 11, 2013

OUR VIEW: It is time for healing in our community

Staff report
Glasgow Daily Times

GLASGOW — The most difficult trial in the history of our community has ended. Let the healing begin.

We have spent recent weeks — and months — under a microscope’s scrutiny like germs on a slide. Our community has become the punch-line of jokes about being the most corrupt place in Kentucky as federal investigators have combed nearly every corner in search of public officials and others to prosecute.

It is time for the scrutiny to end and the only way that will happen will be for the political games to cease.

There will be those who believe Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton, BCSO Deputy Aaron Bennett and Barren-Edmonson Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey got away with it. The jury decided there wasn’t proof beyond a reasonable doubt to convict the three of crimes against Billy Randall Stinnett. We, as a community, must let the jury’s decision stand.

The jury decided the sheriff was guilty of trying to influence two members of his department into giving false reports or false statements. We, as a community, must let the jury’s decision stand.

Final sentencing for the sheriff will be Aug. 1. We will know at that time Eaton’s punishment and we must let that stand.

As a community, it is not our place to retry this case. It is settled and now forgiveness must begin.

For those on either side of this three-year-long nightmare, they must forgive the other side. Grudges cannot be carried forward or our community will not heal from this wound.

Now is the time for those who hold public office or will seek public office to do things the right way. It is time for forthright and honest discussions about our community’s needs and our shared future.

We can become a beacon to follow by showing how political cooperation and honest and reasonable debate can lead to a brighter future for our community.

For that to happen, though, there must be healing and healing begins with forgiveness.