Saturday, 04 May 2013 05:16

Prosecutors and Defense lawyers spend over two hours Friday afternoon on the prosecution witness former Barren County Deputy Steve Runyon, who is now retired.   Prosecutors had Mr. Runyon tell the events of February 24, 2010 and how he got involved.  Runyon said he was at the office working on a report when the call came in about the Stinnett chase.

Runyon said just before he arrived at Calvary Baptist, he had heard Chris screaming on the radio and he exited his cruiser and try to locate him and when he did Chris told him that Stinnett had kicked him and that he had something in his hand.  At this time they were getting people out of the church and they were escorting Stinnett out to Minor’s Cruiser.  Runyon said he had overheard Eaton tell someone that he had found a knife on the ground and Stinnett admitted it was his.  He said then they all went to move their vehicles because the fire trucks needed to get through there, so at that time he went to the hospital to check on Aaron Bennett who had broke his hand.

He said he also saw Stinnett at the hospital when they were stitching him up. Mr. Conn then asked Runyon if he knew Stinnett and he said he had arrested him before and Stinnett used to be married to his wife’s cousin.   Runyon said he walked over to Stinnett and said its a thousand wonders you hadn't killed somebody.   Runyon said he left the hospital and went home.

Then Runyon went on to tell about a day he was at a health club and Chris Eaton came over there and said he needed to talk to him. Runyon claims that Eaton told him that the FBI had just left the office and they were investigated that excessive force was used on Stinnett on February 24, 2010.  Runyon said that he and Chris went to the Calvary Baptist Church and Eaton drove him over to where the air conditioning units were.  Runyon said Eaton asked him to say that he found a knife on the ground.  He said he just couldn't do it and it just made him sick.   Runyon then said that Eaton had told him everyone had to write a report for the FBI.  Runyon says Eaton told him what to put in the report.  Runyon says he did lie to the grand jury by saying that he found the knife on the ground because Eaton told him too and that he kept making comments about his job.

Defense attorney True told him in the first indictment that there was an SR and everybody in Barren County knew it was him. Mr. True told Runyon, you said you were worried about your job but once an indictment came down you didn't have to worry about that anymore, didn't your lawyer tell you that?  Runyon replied that he did not know that.   True told Runyon that he had told five lies to the grand jury and you don’t have to be afraid to talk there because everything is secret.  True asked Runyon has anyone indicated to him that he was going to be prosecuted for giving false testimony to the grand jury.  He answered no.

True asked Runyon what time he got off on March 4, 2010 the day Eaton took him to Calvary Baptist.  He said I usually get off at 4.  True show him his time card for that day and it said he had worked until 5pm. Mr. True then asked him if he had seen Kelley Billingsley and his daughter at the church taking pictures that night and he said he hadn't.   Mr. True said that Kelly Billingsley had testified that he was there that night near the air conditioning units.

Then Mr. True asked him if there had been a time that Eaton was going to have to appoint someone to be jailer and he said to Runyon, you wanted that job but Eaton gave it to Matt Mutter. Runyon replied that it had bothered him that he didn't get the job as Jailer. True told him there had been a lot of talk that he wanted to be sheriff.  Runyon replied with “No I don’t want to be Sheriff”.

Next Witness for the Prosecution was Trevor Phillips, former Public Relations Office for the Sheriff’s Office. They had him also tell how he had been involved with the chase.   But mostly they were interested in the pictures he had taken that day with his camera.  Phillips testified that he took nineteen pictures that day.  Prosecutors showed the pictures that he had taken and noted the time on the pictures and said that two pictures were missing and Phillips said he had deleted them, because they possibly could be misleading and look bad.  One was of Eaton and one was of Adam Minor.  Prosecutor Conn tried several times to get Phillips to say that Eaton had instructed him to delete the pictures but Phillips said he did that on his on.  He said the camera belong to him.  Phillips said he deleted the pictures before he knew anything about the FBI investigation.

When Mr. True got to cross examine Phillips he told Phillips to tell the jury what happen to him on July 26, 2012.

Phillips said the he and his wife were in bed and there was a loud knock at the door.  When he looked out he saw a State Trooper uniform and he opened the door and an FBI agent flipped his badge and he said six agents came into his house with guns pulled.  They told Phillips they had a search warrant and they wanted his camera, flash drive and memory sticks.  Phillips said they went over his whole house and went through his truck.  Phillips also stated that his wife was 7 months pregnant and a female officer went into the bedroom and told her to get dressed.   True asked Phillips had the government made you aware that Billy Randall Stinnett didn't have any recollection of Eaton striking him in the groin. Phillips stated he did not know that.  Phillips said that two pictures were missing from his memory card after the prosecution returned it.   Phillips had the pictures on a CD and had given it to Mr. Butler, Counsel for Mr. Guffey. It seemed Mr. Conn was confused with numbers and didn't understand what they were telling him.  Judge McKinley even stepped in to try to explain it to him.  Conn then said he had no more questions and the judge ended the day.



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