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Former Breathitt County Schools Superintendent Sentenced to 24 Months for Vote Buying Conspiracy

Wednesday, 11 14, 2012

Shelley Catharine Johnson
Deputy Communications Director
502-696-5659 (office)

The former Breathitt County Schools Superintendent who previously admitted distributing money to others to buy votes was sentenced today to 24 months in federal prison.

U.S. District Judge Karen Caldwell sentenced 66-year-old Arch Turner for conspiring to buy votes. She also fined him $250,000 and issued a special assessment of $1,000 both of which are du immediately. Turner was taken into custody following the hearing. The charges against Turner are the result of an investigation by General Conway’s Department of Criminal Investigations and the FBI.

Turner admitted that during the spring of 2010 he provided money to individuals to buy votes for candidates in the May 2010 primary election in Breathitt County. Turner acknowledged he distributed the money at a meeting he arranged with a group of people. According to his plea agreement, Turner also received money from an individual to be used for vote buying.

Turner served as the schools superintendent from 2005 until Jul of 2012. A total of 11 people have pleaded guilty or been convicted in federal court of vote buying related charges stemming from Breathitt County’s May 2010 primary election.

Prosecution of this case was handled by the Office of Kerry B. Harvey, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky.

Under federal law Turner must serve at least 85 percent of his prison sentence.