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Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Katie Webster elected to Ampersand Board of Directors

We are delighted to announce that Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Katie Webster has been elected to the Board of Directors for Ampersand Sexual Violence Resource Center of the Bluegrass. Formerly known as the Bluegrass Rape Crisis Center, Ampersand works to support survivors of sexual violence and to educate the community about rape culture. Ampersand is a nonprofit organization that serves 17 counties, including Fayette County.

Ms. Webster will also serve on Ampersand’s Development and Marketing Committee for a three year term. Ms. Webster has worked as a prosecutor at the Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office for 10 years and is a member of the Special Victim’s Unit, prosecuting domestic violence and adult sexual assault cases. She is passionate about working with survivors of sexual violence, and working with law enforcement and other community agencies to create and implement a community sexual assault response team for Lexington.

Manslaughter Second Degree Conviction

Manslaughter Second Degree Conviction

After three days of trial, Donald Roark was convicted of manslaughter second degree in the shooting death of Corenz White on January 3, 2016. Roark had gone to an apartment complex off of Red Mile Road with  White and the White’s brother in the late hours of January 2, 2016. During a confrontation after a party that evening, Roark shot Corenz White in the chest resulting in his death.

Body camera from an apartment security guard captured Roark dragging the body of Corenz White through the apartment complex shortly after the shooting.  Roark was indicted for murder, but the jury found him guilty of the lesser offense of manslaughter 2nd Degree, recommending the maximum sentence of 10 years. Roark is scheduled for sentencing before Judge Thomas Travis, 8th Division, on July 21, 2016.  Prosecutors were Paco Villalobos and Kathy Phillips.

Defendants Convicted After Trial of Tampering with Physical Evidence, Theft by Unlawful Taking, and Unauthorized Practice of Law

On Tuesday, a Fayette County jury convicted James Joseph Gormley, III and Jennifer Jane Dunlap of Tampering with Physical Evidence, a Class D felony. The jury also found Dunlap guilty of Theft by Unlawful Taking and found Gormley guilty of Unauthorized Practice of Law.

On July 6, 2016, Jennifer Dunlap entered the Bryan Station Road Kroger with an empty cart and attempted to walk out with a Nutri-Ninja food processor, three packages of steaks, and a package of diet green tea, without paying. Kroger’s security measures activated, sounding an alarm and engaging brakes on the wheels of her cart, preventing her from leaving with the stolen goods. When Kroger management and loss-prevention officers confronted her, she showed them a receipt, claiming at various times that she’d just bought the items, or that she had in fact walked in with the food processor and intended to return it. Kroger employees testified that none of the items in her cart were on the receipt, and that the receipt was from a different Kroger, three days prior.

Dunlap asked to call an attorney, and called Gormley, her ex-boyfriend. Gormley, once a licensed attorney, was disbarred after being convicted of a felony. Gormley showed up alone, leading the police officer present to believe he was Dunlap’s attorney. He did not tell the officer otherwise. After asking to meet with Dunlap alone, Gormley was seen picking up the receipt and handing it to Dunlap, who folded it and placed it inside her shirt. Gormley then lied to the officer about having done so.

The jury recommended a two-year sentence for Dunlap on the Tampering charge, and the maximum five years for Gormley. Judge Pamela Goodwine set formal sentencing for June 23rd.  Prosecutors in the case were Katie Bouvier and Michael Barnett.

Crime Victims’ Rights Week

Today Fayette County Prosecutors, Advocates, Law Enforcement, Community Partners and Crime Victims and Survivors observed Crime Victims’ Rights Week with a resource fair and luncheon at the Fayette Circuit Courthouse. The program was a collaboration between the Fayette Commonwealth’s Attorney, the Faytte County Attorney, the United States Attorney, the Fayette County Sheriff, and the Lexington Police. Five individuals were honored: Catie Embry, David Marye, Kelly Wells, Diana Ross and Leticia Hagerman. Advocates from all of the agencies were recognized and April Ballenetine, a crime survivor, shared her inspirational story. Working Together For Justice.

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