At the Johnson County Schools Board of Education meeting Monday, Superintendent Thom Cochran announced that interim Principal Shawn Hall at Johnson County Middle School will be taking on the role permanently, following a decision by the school's Site-Based Decision Making Council.

Two individuals from Ohio and California were arrested on Saturday on charges including endangering the welfare of a minor, public alcohol intoxication and DUI after PPD officers observed them operating a vehicle with an unrestrained child in the front seat, according to court documents.

The East Kentucky Gearheads held their first weekend Cruiz'N of the year Saturday, with a change of venue to the Mayo Plaza providing more space for the cars on display and more parking for the visitors. For more information on upcoming car shows, find the East Kentucky Gearheads on Facebook…

A River man was arrested in the Escom Chandler Park Saturday after, the Paintsville Police Department reported, he was found to be in possession of more than 4 grams of meth.

Five people were indicted by a Johnson County grand jury for allegedly being involved in the Apr. 8 burglary of one of the suspects' grandfather.

Thursday, the board of the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center met for its regular meeting outside the jail, at the Johnson County Fiscal Court, and the main topic discussed was balancing the need to keep the jail from being overcrowded versus the need to keep the jail’s budget intact.

Prime Diner and Grill began a process of soft opening this week in preparation for an official opening on June 1, and the owner of the restaurant, Keenan Powers, said he was unprepared for the influx of customers and that he and his staff are learning more and more from the process.

The Paintsville High School Alumni Association made three donations to the Paintsville Independent Schools Board of Education at the board’s regular meeting Monday, totaling approximately $10,500.

The Johnson County Jeep Club met up with members and other Jeep enthusiasts Saturday to take part in the third annual Kentucky State Police Memorial Trooper Island Poker Run in observance of KSP Fallen Trooper Memorial Week and raising funds for KSP’s Trooper Island summer camp for kids.

The Johnson County Fiscal Court took steps in a regular meeting Monday to continue a truck lease program that has resulted in big savings for the county in years past.

An East Point man was arrested on Apr. 25 following an investigation into an Apr. 8 burglary wherein the owner of a residence said he received a call that his grandson was in intensive care at Highlands Regional Medical Center and, upon finding that there was no one at the hospital by his gr…

A Public Service Commission investigation of Johnson County Gas is continuing, with some of the records the PSC has requested being reported as having been lost in an office fire.

With the help of a nearly $1.5 million federal grant, Eastern Kentucky University will open four technical school programs aimed at training aviation mechanics, including one through a local partnership with Big Sandy Community and Technical College.

A Staffordsville man was arrested Friday after video surveillance footage from a house on Samuel Drive showed the man breaking in and removing several items from the residence, according to a statement from the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office.

The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office is seeking information regarding a Louisville man who escaped from a transitional home and is suspected to be traveling to Staffordsville, according to a statement from Johnson County Sheriff Doug Saylor.

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The Johnson County Fiscal Court met in special session for its April meeting Monday for a change of venue, to provide the space to honor Johnson County Schools’ numerous academic achievements at state Governor’s Cup competition in Louisville.


The 33rd annual Van Lear Town Celebration is in the books.

The yearly commemoration of the historic coal mining town and the country music royalty that call it home came after recent passing of Van Lear’s Herman Webb, for whom a memorial gathering was held Saturday at the Mountain Arts Center in Prestonsburg.

A public memorial service is being held Saturday after one of Johnson County’s most tireless ambassadors passed away last week at the age of 83.

Herman Webb, of Van Lear, is survived by four sisters, including Grammy-winning  country singers Loretta Lynn and Crystal Gayle, three daughters, six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. 

Webb frequently directed tours of the family’s famous “Butcher Holler” homestead, and managed the family-owned Webb’s Grocery.

A man convicted of rape and sodomy involving a minor in Johnson County will become eligible for parole this October.

According to a 2007 Kentucky Supreme Court decision, Timothy Dwayne Morman was initially indicted by a grand jury on twelve counts of second-degree rape, twelve counts of second-degree sodomy, one count of using a minor in a sexual performance and one count of first-degree being a persistent felony offender after “Morman’s admitted sexual relationship with a 13-year-old girl.”


Staff at Johnson Central High School and Flat Gap Elementary School came together Wednesday at the JCHS campus to take part in the Kentucky State Police’s Safe Schools Active Shooter Survival Program’s “level four” training, where staff sat in on a seminar and also took part in drills simulating what it would be like if they were caught off guard by a shooter in the halls of the school. 

According to Post 9 Squad Sgt. and Safe Schools Coordinator Jason Joseph, KSP troopers Sheldon Thomas, Jarrett Fields, Joe Weddington, Colt Stumbo and Jamie Rose were on-site to assist with the training. The program began with a seminar delivered by Joseph, which outlined likely scenarios and the responses that would be appropriate if a staff member found themselves in a situation where they heard gunfire while at the school. 

The 12 Baskets Food Pantry at the Paintsville First Church of God added an extra day to its usual distribution schedule to give away a truckload of fresh produce on Tuesday.

Pastor Dan Heaberlin said the pantry is usually only open on Tuesdays, but the produce arrived on Wednesday. The food was organized, bagged and given away with the help of HOPE, an American Legion Youth Group that operates from Paintsville’s Veterans Center.


Local singer and songwriter Waylon Nelson held a release party for his new album, ‘Appalachian Sound,’ Friday at the Historic SIPP Theatre in downtown Paintsville.

Appalachian Sound released in June, according to Nelson, and has been steadily gaining momentum. Nelson, of Pikeville, said many of the songs have been written for years, but the hard work and gracious contributions of several musicians since August in the studio at the Mountain Arts Center in Prestonsburg made it possible.

More than 100 professional and amateur golfers took to the links in Paintsville over the weekend for the annual Paintsville Invitational Tournament.

Adam Crum, with the Paintsville Golf Course said this marks the 78th year of the tournament, with 114 participants gathering to play in a two-day tournament following a Friday Pro-Am.

Crum said participants this year came not just from Johnson and surrounding counties, but other six states including Ohio, Maryland, Florida, Indiana, West Virginia and South Carolina.

The Paintsville High School Alumni Association announced a new format for its annual All-Alumni Weekend event and also announced a Hall of Fame wall at the Paintsville Independent Schools’ central office building in a statement Monday.

According to the statement, three new PHS alumni will be inducted into the association’s Distinguished Alumni Hall of Fame during the All-Alumni Weekend event, including Jayme Runyon, class of 1975, Marty Preston and Scott Bradley, both of the class of 1992. The event will be held at 10 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 1 in the ballroom of the Ramada Inn in Paintsville.

When Johnson County Middle School and Johnson Central High School return to classes next week, students will be hearing about a new program available to them to bolster their academic and personal success.

The Johnson County School District is launching “Eagle Enrichment” Aug. 27, a before-school and after-school program open to them to focus on ways they can improve in classes, work on student success skills or just find new enrichment opportunities.


The Paintsville Rotary Club’s first Trivia Night is in the books after Kim O’Bryan’s team, Les Quizerables, took home a victory over 16 other teams registered for the event, earning themselves $170 and bragging rights until next month’s event.

The event brought in a much larger turnout than originally anticipated, according to Rotary Club President Brandon May, who said they had originally told the staff at JB’s Sports Lounge to prepare for 15-20 patrons for the night and thanked them for seeing to an actual attendance of nearly 70 competitiors.

Kentucky State Police reports that a Johnson County man died in a motorcycle crash in Floyd County Thursday.

KSP spokesperson Trooper William Petry said that Dakota Hampton, 24, of Wittensville, died in a crash that occurred on U.S. 23 in Ivel at approximately 6 p.m. on Thursday.

Hampton was not wearing a helmet, Petry said, and was traveling northbound toward Prestonsburg when he fell off the motorcycle. 

The Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy has released its 2017 Overdose Fatality Report, including county-by-county statistics on drug overdose deaths as well as statewide numbers.

According to the report, 1,468 residents nearly 97 nonresidents died from overdoses in the state in 2017, an increase from 2016.

Financial statements obtained by The Paintsville Herald for the City of Paintsville’s actual revenues and expenses for the 2017-2018 fiscal year show multiple city departments operating under budget and over $1 million in grants.

Despite that, however, the Paintsville Tourism Commission did not see a similar financial result, something officials said came despite tourism growth.


Johnson Central High School hosted the tenth annual Awaken concert and conference Friday evening, which saw the return of Grammy-winning recording artist Zach Williams to the stage.

Other Christian artists, including The Collective, Sidewalk Prophets and Inside Joke also performed for the crowd of approximately 1,500.

Though it is perhaps best known as one of the region’s biggest annual Christian rock concerts, First Christian Church pastor and Awaken Ministries president Ben Stephens said the Awaken conference is much more.


Businesses in the Mayo Plaza in Paintsville came together Saturday with the support of Paintsville Tourism to host a “sidewalk sale” where several vendors set up outside and invited the community to come out and shop and get child fingerprinting done by the Paintsville Police Department, acc…

Two Thelma residents were arrested Friday night after the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office reported deputies found drugs and evidence of drug use in a residence in which children were present.

A statement from the sheriff’s office said that when JCSO Deputies Jesse Mullins, J.P. Primm and Cory Cook responded to a call which alleged that Virginia Shepherd, 47, of Thelma and Timothy S. Moore, 57, also of Thelma, had the children of the complainant inside their residence and refused to allow the custodians and police entry. According to the statement, after some time, deputies were able to convince Shepherd to allow them inside the house.

As part of the agenda last Wednesday, the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center board approved a working budget for the 2018-2019 fiscal year. 

The prospective budget operates on 7.5 percent more in revenue and expenses than the 2017-2018 fiscal year budget, up from $2,652,000 to $2,852,000. 

This increase comes despite steep projected losses in revenue from Elliott County (down from $100,000 to $30,000) and Morgan County (down from $240,000 to $100,000) due to the anticipated opening of a new Rowan County Detention Center in Morehead. The budget anticipates significant increases in income from Lawrence and Magoffin counties and state inmates to more than accommodate these losses.

July’s regular meeting of the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center board saw two major shakeups that will affect the jail’s finances: The hiring of additional staff and a cut to per diem costs for housing county inmates.

During Administrator F. D. “Pete” Fitzpatrick’s report on the prior few months’ population, bills and employee overtime costs, multiple board members expressed the need to fix an excess of overtime. 

Appalachian Newspapers recently named its All-Mountain Teams.

The All-Mountain team will consist of Player of the Year, Coach of the Year, First-Team, Second-Team, Third-Team and Honorable Mentions.

The All-Mountain Teams consist of players from Mingo County, Pike County, Floyd County, Johnson County and Perry County and entire 15th Region coverage areas. 

The All-Mountain Team was voted on by Appalachian Newspapers sports writers: Randy White, Cory Vance, Steve LeMaster, Trevor Thacker, Mike Muncy and Cody Davis.

With tanker manufacturing facility SilverLiner set to open its doors in Pikeville in November, the combined efforts of Big Sandy Community and Technical College, the Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program and Big Sandy Area Community Action Program are making sure the company will have a full staff of skilled employees.

The various agencies and company officials joined together Thursday celebrating as the first 12 students of the SilverLiner program at BSCTC’s Mayo Campus were celebrated with a graduation ceremony..

Like others around the state, nonprofits in Johnson County are now subject to a six percent sales tax for admissions fees, even for fundraisers. The effects, representatives said, have been varied.

Mountain Homeplace manager Russell Honeycutt said that, for the living historical museum near Paintsville Lake, applying the tax has been a smooth transition.

A Johnson County grand jury handed down 29 indictments Wednesday, among them an indictment against a Thelma man alleged to have committed charges including rape, sodomy and sexual abuse of a minor.

Marvin P. Martin, 34, of Thelma, is alleged, in the indictment, to have committed the offense of second-degree rape by “knowingly and unlawfully … engaging in sexual intercourse with a person less than 14 years of age,” second-degree sodomy by “knowingly and unlawfully … engaging in deviate sexual intercourse with a person less than 14 years of age,” and second-degree sexual abuse by “knowingly and unlawfully … subjecting a person less than 14 years of age … to sexual contact” between 2017 and this year. 


The Johnson County Jeep Club held its first National Jeep Day event Saturday and lined the streets of downtown Paintsville with more than 70 Jeeps as participants braved the heat to enjoy the company of other likeminded enthusiasts, according to a statement from JCJC Vice President Connie Blevins.

The event included a show with prizes, vendors and a family atmosphere that welcomed Jeep clubs from anywhere to celebrate with the Jeep enthusiasts of Johnson County, the statement said.

A fundraising effort is underway for the family of a Paintsville man badly burned in an accident last month.

Willie Owens suffered extensive burns over half of his body June 16 when a lawnmower overturned and spilled gasoline. Since then, his aunt Joanna Owens has said, he has been recovering at Cabell Huntington Hospital, and infections have kept him on hemodialysis and forced doctors to amputate both his legs and part of one arm.


Saturday at the University of Kentucky, Johnson Central sophomore Savannah Ratliff earned the state championship in her category of the 4-H Communications Contest.

Johnson County UK Cooperative Extension 4-H Agent Dianna Reed said Ratliff worked her way to the state contest after county and district competitions. At state, she earned the championship for the 15-year-old’s speech category. 

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