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June 11, 2017

HEARINGS FOR TWO HIGH PROFILE CRIME CASES FOR LAWRENCE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT FRIDAY;

ONE BEGINS ITS JUDICIAL JOURNEY, AS ANOTHER ENDS IN AN ABRUPT SURPRISING CONCLUSION

Edgar Purdom during his arranged "less than guilty" plea entry hearing in Lawrence Circuit Court Friday morning.Edgar Purdom during his arranged "less than guilty" plea entry hearing in Lawrence Circuit Court Friday morning.

JUNE 12, 2017 - written by WADE QUEEN


Two high profile criminal cases had hearings for each individual of both cases in Lawrence County Circuit Court last week, with one case just beginning the judicial process, while the other coming to a sudden, very surprising, possibly even somewhat stunning conclusion, with the defendant in the case now receiving just a fraction of his original trial sentence.

In that latter case, a former bank president and CEO in Louisa appeared in Lawrence County Court and entered an Alford plea Friday to a distribution of child pornography charges.

Assistant Commonwealth Attorney Tony Skeans' office moved to dismiss four possession of child pornography charges and recommended that Edgar Purdom serve at least a year in prison.

Edgar Purdom, 69, was found guilty by a Lawrence County jury of four counts of distribution of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor and one count of possession of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor at the end of his trial on November 26, 2014.

The guilty verdict followed an investigation by then Attorney General Jack Conway's Cybercrimes Unit that began in February 2013.

The jury recommended Purdom, the former president and CEO of Louisa Community Bank, serve a three-year prison sentence for each count to run consecutively for a total of 15 years. Purdom was taken into custody immediately following his trial. He was formerly sentenced on December 30, 2014.

“Because of the hard work of my Cybercrimes Unit, we have put another child pornographer behind bars,” Conway said. “I would also like to thank Anna Melvin, Commonwealth’s Attorney for the 24th Judicial Circuit, and her staff for the successful prosecution of this case. Our efforts are making the Internet a safer place for Kentucky children.”

Lawrence County grand jury indicted Purdom on Jan. 14, 2014, following the investigation by General Conway.

After his trial, Purdom appealed his conviction and won, but was overturned by a state appeals court earlier this year.

With the Alford plea entered Friday, Purdom does not admit guilt but accepts the penalty.

An Alford plea (also called a Kennedy plea in West Virginia), in United States law is a guilty plea in criminal court, whereby a defendant in a criminal case does not admit to the criminal act and asserts innocence. In entering an Alford plea, the defendant admits that the evidence the prosecution has would be likely to persuade a judge or jury to find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The Alford guilty plea is named after the United States Supreme Court case of North Carolina v. Alford (1970)

Edgar Purdom will be sentenced July 14 and will be on the sex offender registry for the rest of his life.

HEARINGS FOR TWO HIGH PROFILE CRIME CASES FOR LAWRENCE COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT FRIDAY; ONE BEGINS ITS JUDICIAL JOURNEY, AS ANOTHER ENDS IN A ABRUPT SURPRISING CONCLUSION.


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EDGAR PURDOM DURING HIS ARRANGED " LESS THAN GUILTY" PLEA ENTRY HEARING IN LAWRENCE COUNTY COURT FRIDAY MORNING.


JUNE 12, 2017 - written by WADE QUEEN


Two high profile criminal cases had hearings for each individual of both cases in Lawrence County Circuit Court last week, with one case just beginning the judicial process, while the other coming to a sudden, very surprising, possibly even somewhat stunning conclusion, with the defendant in the case now receiving just a fraction of his original trial sentence.

In that latter case, a former bank president and CEO in Louisa appeared in Lawrence County Court and entered an Alford plea Friday to a distribution of child pornography charges.

The assistant Commonwealth Attorney's offfice moved to dismiss four possession of child pornography charge and recommended that Edgar Purdom serve at least a year in prison.

Edgar Purdom, 69, was found guilty by a Lawrence County jury of four counts of distribution of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor and one count of possession of matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor at the end of his trial on November 26, 2014.

The guilty verdict follows an investigation by then Attorney General Jack Conway's Cybercrimes Unit that began in February 2013.

The jury recommended Purdom, the former president and CEO of Louisa Community Bank, serve a three-year prison sentence for each count to run consecutively for a total of 15 years. Purdom was taken into custody immediately following his trial. He was formerly sentenced on December 30, 2014.

“Because of the hard work of my Cybercrimes Unit, we have put another child pornographer behind bars,” Conway said. “I would also like to thank Anna Melvin, Commonwealth’s Attorney for the 24thJudicial Circuit, and her staff for the successful prosecution of this case. Our efforts are making the Internet a safer place for Kentucky children.”

Lawrence County grand jury indicted Purdom on Jan. 14, 2014, following the investigation by General Conway's Cybercrimes Unit.

After his trial, Purdom appealed that conviction, which was overturned by a state appeals court earlier this year.

With the Alford plea entered Friday, Purdom does not admit guilt but accepts the penalty.

An Alford plea (also called a Kennedy plea in West Virginia), in United States law is a guilty plea in criminal court, whereby a defendant in a criminal case does not admit to the criminal act and asserts innocence. In entering an Alford plea, the defendant admits that the evidence the prosecution has would be likely to persuade a judge or jury to find the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The Alford guilty plea is named after the United States Supreme Court case of North Carolina v. Alford (1970)

Edgar Purdom will be sentenced July 14 and will be on the sex offender registry for the rest of his life.

EDENS MAKES FIRST COURT APPEARANCE IN LAWRENCE COUNTY

Former Louisa Physician Curt Edens At His First Court Appearance During His Arraignment Last Friday Morning. Former Louisa Physician Curt Edens At His First Court Appearance During His Arraignment Last Friday Morning.


Meanwhile, a former Louisa physician who operated a now defunct pain clinic in the Louisa area, and is facing charges due to alleged illegal actions at his former clinic, entered a not guilty plea during a hearing in his first appearance in court last week.

Dr. Curtis Edens, 57, of Hardeeville, South Carolina, appeared in a Lawrence County courtroom Friday morning, June 9, for his arraignment.

Edens was indicted in May on eight different criminal counts, including two counts of Medicaid fraud and one count of improperly prescribing a controlled substance.

Investigators from the office of the Attorney General of Kentucky say Edens operated a former Suboxone clinic for several years in Louisa until 2016. Edens is accused of fraudulently charging Medicaid patients cash for services in violation of Medicaid policies.

In 2011 and 2013, Dr. Edens allegedly improperly prescribed Suboxone to patients from that clinic.

Curt Edens' first pre-trial conference is set at 11 A.M. August 25.

SEE LAZER STORY ABOUT EDENS LOSING HIS PHYSICIANS LICENSE IN KY)

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