Lisa Autry

Reporter/Producer

Lisa is a Scottsville native and WKU alum.  She has worked in radio as a news reporter and anchor for 18 years.  Prior to joining WKU Public Radio, she most recently worked at WHAS in Louisville and WLAC in Nashville.  She has received numerous awards from the Associated Press, including Best Reporter in Kentucky.  Many of her stories have been heard on NPR. 

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Regional
1:33 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

Centre Student's Road to Graduation Began in Pakistan

Ibrahim Jadoon graduates from Centre College this weekend, thankful for his American education. He will spend the next year in Malaysia as a Fullbright Scholar.

Ibrahim Jadoon will graduate with honors this weekend from Centre College in Danville. His family left Pakistan and moved to the U.S. when he was three. When Osama bin Laden was captured two years ago just blocks from Jadoon's former home, he did a lot of reflecting.

"It was disappointing because, if people don't know, Pakistan is a relatively new nation," explained Jadoon. "I realize it was the Pakastani government's poor border security, it's inability to remove extremist militant groups like the Taliban, and it's general dysfunction that enabled bin Laden to stay hidden for so long."

Jadoon often thinks about how his life would have been different had his family stayed in Pakistan.

"The United States, for all of its faults we sometime talk about in the news, unequivocally houses the best institutes of higher education in the world," said Jadoon. "I feel lucky just to be in the U.S., but in about four days when I graduate, I will join the surprisingly seven percent of the world that actually has a college degree."

The Pakistani-American spoke to Lisa Autry about how his life may have turned out had his family had not left Pakistan, and what he thinks are the prospects for a democracy in his home country. 

Arts & Culture
1:56 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Darius Rucker to Headline SKyPac Music Festival

The Southern Kentucky Performing Arts Center is bringing musician Darius Rucker to Bowling Green this summer.  The pop-turned-country artist will headline The Sounds of Independence Music Festival on July 27th.  SKyPAC Executive Director Tom Tomlinson believes Rucker will be a big regional draw.

"I think without a doubt he's one of the biggest names to appear here in a number of years," says Tomlinson.  "He's at least one of the biggest names we've brought here since the opening night with Vince Gill."

The downtown music festival will be a fundraiser for SKYyPAC.  Tickets go on sale Friday to the general public.  The festival will be held outside the SKYyPAC facility and will feature a number of artists, including Justin Rivers from this season of "The Voice."

Regional
11:42 pm
Thu May 9, 2013

Jury Convicts Barren County Sheriff, Acquits Two Other Officers

A jury has found Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton guilty on two counts of witness tampering stemming from the arrest of a suspect who claims he was beaten.  The same jury Thursday night returned not guilty verdicts for two other law enforcement officers. 

After eight hours of deliberations, a jury acquitted Eric Guffey on all four counts against him.   Guffey helped subdue suspect Billy Stinnett who led Barren County officers on a dangerous car and foot pursuit on February 24, 2010.  The officers were accused of using excessive force and covering it up to the FBI.  Louisville Attorney Brian Butler represented Guffey and called the accusations against him shameful.  Butler said if anything, his client was a hero that day.

"Eric Guffey stopped him from running through ditches, around roadblocks, and running citizens off the road," stated Butler.  "If he wouldn't have had the foresight to block that road, there's no telling what would have happened in Barren county.  And then Eric got out of that truck and ran after a meth head who was violent."

Also acquitted on all charges was Deputy Aaron Bennett, who was represented by Glasgow Attorney Buddy Alexander.

"It's obviously going to be closure for my client and his family.  Chris' family is going to be in turmoil from now until August and possibly thereafter," said Alexander.

Sheriff Chris Eaton was charged in an eight-count federal indictment and was found guilty on two counts of witness tampering.  He left the U.S. District Courthouse in Bowling Green without comment.  He will be sentenced August 1 and faces up to 20 years in prison on each count.

Regional
8:27 am
Thu May 9, 2013

Federal Case Against Barren County Sheriff, Two Others Could Go to Jury Thursday

The case against Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton and two other officers is expected to go to the jury Thursday. Eaton, Deputy Aaron Bennett, and Barren-Edmonson County Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey are accused of beating a suspect and engaging in a cover-up. 

Testimony ended in the week-and-a-half long trial with none of the officers testifying in their own defense. 

In closing statements to the jury, Federal Prosecutor Roy Conn said three men sworn to uphold the law broke the law. He recanted eyewitness statements that suspect Billy Stinnett was on the ground in handcuffs, but the alleged assault continued. 

The prosecution relied heavily on former deputy Adam Minor, who pleaded guilty to one charge and agreed to testify against the other officers. 

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Regional
8:21 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Defense Calls First Witnesses in Trial of Barren County Sheriff and Other Officers

The defense has begun calling witnesses in the trial of Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton and two other law enforcement officers.  The men stand accused of beating a suspect in handcuffs and lying about it to the FBI. 

Before calling their first witness, defense attorneys for Sheriff Eaton, Deputy Aaron Bennett, and Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey, asked for acquittals or at least the dismissal of some charges, but the motions were rejected by U.S. District Judge Joseph McKinley. 

The defense brought to the witness stand Ron Lafferty, a detective with the Barren-Edmonson Drug Task Force.  Lafferty said when he arrived on the arrest scene, suspect Billy Stinnett was already in handcuffs and he saw no one hit Stinnett.  He wrote a report and stressed that Sheriff Eaton never influenced what he put in the report, as another officer testified earlier in the trial. 

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Regional
12:56 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

FBI Agents Face Cross-Examination in Federal Trial of Barren County Sheriff, Two Others

U.S. District Courthouse in Bowling Green, Ky.

Prosecutors in the trial of Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton and two other southern Kentucky law enforcement agents have been calling FBI agents to the stand Tuesday.

Eaton, Barren County Sheriff's Deputy Aaron Bennett, and Barren-Edmonson County Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey are accused of beating drug suspect Billy Stinnett after he was taken into custody, and then lying about it to federal investigators.

The three law enforcement agents took Stinnett into custody after he led officers on a high-speed, two-county chase on Feb. 24, 2010. Stinnett has admitted he was high on meth at the time of the incident, and a mobile meth lab was found in the back of the vehicle he crashed into a Glasgow church.

FBI special agent Michael Schaffer told the court he interviewed Detective Eric Guffey twice in one day following the alleged beating of Stinnett. Schaffer says Guffey told two different stories about whether Stinnett was on the ground or standing when he was struck by officers.

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Regional
7:26 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

FBI Agents Take the Stand in Trial of Barren County Sheriff, Deputy, and Detective

The government is on the stand in the federal trial of Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton, Deputy Aaron Bennett, and Detective Eric Guffey. The three are on trial in U.S. District Court in Bowling Green for using excessive force on a suspect and lying about it to federal investigators. 

Part of Monday’s testimony came from the FBI’s lead investigator on the case.  Special Agent Mike Brown interviewed the three officers at the Barren County Sheriff’s Office in April 2010, about two months after suspect Billy Stinnett was allegedly beaten after being handcuffed. 

Brown began each interview by reminding the officers that if they lied, they could be criminally charged.  Brown said he also gave each defendant an opportunity to make corrections to their written statements to the FBI, but each officer affirmed their report was accurate.  The reports, however, contained inconsistencies between the defendants and eye witnesses at the arrest scene.

Defense attorneys took Brown through a timeline of what they saw as shoddy investigative work, including failure to record interviews with the defendants and the fact a private citizen was asked to collect evidence from the scene. 

Agent Brown will resume his testimony Tuesday morning under cross-examination.

Regional
1:33 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

FBI Agent Testifies in Federal Trial of Barren County Sheriff, Two Others

The prosecution continues to call witnesses Monday in the trial of Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton and two other southern Kentucky law enforcement officers.

On the stand Monday is Dave McClellan, one of the two FBI agents who investigated the alleged beating of drug suspect Billy Stinnett, who led officers on a high-speed, two-county chase in February of 2010, before crashing his van into a Glasgow church. 

McClellan interviewed Sheriff Eaton, Barren County Sheriff's Deputy Aaron Bennett, and Barren-Metcalfe Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey after the 2010 incident. Each of the three men were told they could be criminally charged if information in the report turned out to be false.

The officers were adamant that the written reports they had produced about the chase and arrest of Stinnett were accurate.

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Regional
8:01 pm
Sun May 5, 2013

Barren County Sheriff's Trial Enters Week Two

The federal trial of Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton enters its second week Monday.  Eaton, Deputy Aaron Bennett, and Drug Task Force Detective Eric Guffey are accused of using excessive force on a suspect and covering it up to federal investigators. 

On the witness stand Friday was retired sheriff’s deputy Steve Runyon who told jurors Eaton asked him to lie in a report to the FBI about the arrest of Billy Stinnett.  Under cross-examination, Runyon admitted he previously lied to a grand jury, telling them Eaton did not tell him to make a false report.

Also testifying Friday was former Public Information Officer Trevor Phillips who took pictures after the alleged beating.  Phillips said in one photo it appeared Sheriff Eaton was striking Stinnett.  He said he deleted it because it “didn't look good,” but said Eaton did not tell him to delete it.   He also said the picture was deleted before the FBI began its investigation.  Several prosecution witnesses have said Sheriff Eaton punched Stinnett in the groin after he was in handcuffs. 

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Regional
1:26 pm
Fri May 3, 2013

T.J. Samson Doctor Testifies in Federal Trial of Three Southern Kentucky Law Enforcement Officers

In the fourth day of testimony Friday in the federal trial of three southern Kentucky law enforcement officers, the prosecution continued to call expert witnesses to the stand.

Barren County Sheriff Chris Eaton, one of his deputies, and a Barren-Edmonson drug task force detective are accused of beating drug suspect Billy Stinnett while he was custody in Glasgow, and then lying about it to federal investigators.

On the witness stand Friday afternoon was  Dr. Lee Carter, the on-duty emergency room physician at Glasgow's T.J. Samson Hospital the night of Feb. 24, 2010, when Billy Stinnett crashed his van into a Barren County church after leading officers on a high-speed chase.

Dr. Carter treated Stinnett for injuries Stinnett said were caused by beatings administered by law enforcement after he was handcuffed. Dr. Carter testified that Stinnett had blunt-force trauma to the head that could have been caused by a baton or fist.

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