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Attorney General Conway Announces Arrest of Bell County Clerk

Friday, 11 08, 2013

Daniel Kemp
Deputy Communications Director
502-696-5659 (office)

Attorney General Jack Conway today announced that the Bell County Clerk and three deputy clerks have been arrested following an investigation by General Conway’s Department of Criminal Investigations (DCI).

On Friday, DCI investigators and Kentucky State Police arrested the following individuals:

• 45-year-old Rebecca Blevins, Bell County Clerk. Blevins is charged with theft by failure to make required disposition of property valued over $500 and less than $10,000, a Class D felony; criminal possession of a forged instrument, a Class D felony; and official misconduct in the first degree, a Class A misdemeanor.

• 55-year-old Flora Ferrell, Bell County Deputy Clerk. Ferrell is charged with theft by failure to make required disposition of property valued over $500 and less than $10,000, a Class D felony, and criminal conspiracy, a Class A misdemeanor.

• 23-year-old Kayla Carnes, Bell County Deputy Clerk. Carnes is charged with theft by failure to make required disposition of property valued over $500 and less than $10,000, a Class D felony, and criminal conspiracy, a Class A misdemeanor.

• 40-year-old Connie Watkins, Bell County Deputy Clerk. Watkins is charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument in the second degree, a Class D felony.

The investigation identified more than 50 individuals who bought vehicles from outside of Kentucky and never received a tax refund that they were owed. Rebecca Blevins, Flora Ferrell and Kayla Carnes are accused of keeping approximately $12,200 in refunds. Connie Watkins is accused of assisting in the scheme.

The Office of the Attorney General received the case following an audit by the Kentucky State Auditor’s Office. DCI investigators made the arrests after obtaining and executing warrants Friday morning.

Blevins was placed in the Harlan County Detention Center. Carnes, Ferrell and Watkins were taken to the Bell County Detention Center. The investigation is ongoing.

All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Photos are available on the OAG's Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kyoag