Glasgow Daily Times, Glasgow, KY

October 12, 2010

Judge sets August 2011 trial for Steve Nunn

Special report
Associated Press

LEXINGTON — A judge on Friday set an August 2011 trial date for a former state lawmaker charged with murder in the death of his ex-fiancee.

Fayette Circuit Judge Pamela Goodwine set aside 16 days for Steve Nunn’s murder trial, which is set to begin Aug. 1, 2011. Prosecutors say Nunn, the son of former Kentucky Gov. Louie B. Nunn, shot and killed 29-year-old Amanda Ross outside her downtown Lexington home on Sept. 11, 2009.

In August, Goodwine ruled that prosecutors could seek the death penalty should Nunn be convicted.

Nunn, a 57-year-old former deputy secretary of Health and Human Services and ex-legislator from Glasgow, had a domestic violence order, which Ross had sought, and a non-contact order out against him at the time of the shooting. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Goodwine on Friday also gave defense attorneys until Dec. 31 to file a notice of mental illness.

Goodwine also ruled that prosecutors could use statements Nunn made to a Lexington police officer while hospitalized the day of the shooting.

Nunn sought to suppress the statements, arguing that he had been read his Miranda rights and declined to make any statements before a Lexington officer began an interview at Bowling Green Medical Center, where he was being treated for self-inflicted knife wounds.

Goodwine agreed with prosecutors that Nunn understood his rights when he decided to talk to Lexington Police Sgt. Todd Combs.

Ross’ death prompted Kentucky lawmakers to enact Amanda’s Law, which allows counties to use GPS tracking devices in domestic violence cases.

The slain woman’s mother, Diana M. Ross, has also sued Nunn, along with Opera House Square I LTD., as well as several town house and homeowners’ associations. She’s seeking unspecified damages stemming from her daughter’s death. The lawsuit is on hold while Nunn’s criminal case plays out.