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Indictments released for murder, burglary

Jack Whitt Photo from BSRDC

SALYERSVILLE – A Magoffin County Grand Jury released the following two indictments on Friday, September 3, including one regarding a murder case from March:

Jack D. Whitt, 38, of Coal Branch Road in Salyersville, is charged with one count of first-degree murder, a Class A felony. According to the indictment, on or about March 17, 2021, Whitt allegedly caused the death of Jamie Bailey.

According to the original police reports from Kentucky State Police Pikeville Post 9, KSP received a call from the Magoffin County Sheriff’s Office on March 17, 2021, regarding an unresponsive male in Magoffin County.

KSP investigators responded to a residence on Coal Branch Road and discovered a male had been stabbed, with the initial investigation indicating Jamie Bailey, 41 years old, of Salyersville (formerly of Campton), had suffered a fatal stab wound while at his residence on Coal Branch Road.

Bailey was pronounced deceased at the scene by Magoffin County Coroner’s Office.
Shortly after the incident, officials confirmed to Mortimer Media Group a kitchen knife had been recovered from the residence.

Christopher C. Howard, 38, of Lick Creek Road in Salyersville, is charged with one count first-degree burglary, a Class B felony. According to the indictment, on or about July 12, 2021, Howard allegedly entered or remained unlawfully in a building belonging to the estate of James Adams and participated a crime on the property.

On Monday, July 12, Magoffin County Sheriff Department Deputy Jonathan Holbrook received a report of a burglary on Old Lick Creek Road at the residence of James Adams, who passed away earlier this year. According to the police report, someone stopped by to feed some dogs he keeps on the property, when he walked around the house and saw Christopher Howard, 37, of Lick Creek Road, in Salyersville, walking out of the house carrying items that belonged to Mr. Adams. Howard allegedly took off running, ultimately going up the hill and disappearing.

Holbrook located items scattered all over the property, including in the yard and on the hillside.

A set of hearing aids, valued at over $8,000, which belonged to Mr. Adams, were located in the dog lot Howard had ran by as he fled the scene.

During Deputy Holbrook’s investigation, he went to Howard’s home and talked to his grandfather, who told police Howard was not home, but he had left some bags there. The bags reportedly contained more items that had been stolen from James Adams’ residence.

Also, while he was conducting the investigation, Holbrook was told that another person had items stolen from him, as well. Holbrook located the items belonging to that person, who was able to positively identify them as his stolen items, and told police that he and Howard had recently traded some items. That person produced the items he acquired from Howard and all the items were identified as stolen property from James Adams’ residence, according to the arrest warrant.

Howard reportedly admitted to Holbrook that the recovered property in his possession came from James Adams’ residence, including ammunition and firearms.

Arrest warrants were issued for both defendants and Whitt was taken into custody on September 3 after the indictment had been issued and he is now being held at the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center. Howard was already being held at the jail on a contempt of court charge, according to jail records.

Editor’s Note: The indictment or charge of a person by a grand jury or otherwise is an accusation only and that person is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

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