Breathitt County Schools Superintendent Indicted for Vote Buying Conspiracy and Obstruction of Justice
LEXINGTON, KY - The Breathitt County Schools Superintendent was arrested today pursuant to a federal indictment charging him with obstruction of justice, conspiracy to buy votes and making false statements to a federal agent.
The three count Indictment, returned yesterday and unsealed today, alleges that 65-year-old Arch Turner of Booneville, Ky., conspired with others to buy votes in the November 2010 general election in Breathitt County.
Additionally, when the FBI interviewed Turner in October 2010, he allegedly made false statements saying he had not given any candidate money for election purposes in the May 2010 primary election and that cash he withdrew from his bank account was for personal use and not for the purpose of buying votes.
Turner is also accused of trying to persuade a person, during an FBI investigation, not to report Turner’s vote buying activity to law enforcement.
Kerry B. Harvey, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, Mike Kaste, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Jack Conway, Attorney General of Kentucky, Office of the Attorney General, and Trial Attorney Brian Lichter from the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C., jointly made the announcement today.
The investigation preceding the Indictment was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Office of the Attorney General. The Indictment was presented to the grand jury by Assistant United States Attorney Kenneth R. Taylor.
A date for Turner’s appearance in United States District Court has not yet been set. If convicted, Turner faces a maximum prison sentence of 20 years. However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the United States Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of sentences.
The indictment of a person by a grand jury is an accusation only, and that person is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.