Gunman in triple shooting-suicide was former Knox County judge-executive

vhoneycutt@herald-leader.comAugust 13, 2013 

Former Knox County Judge-Executive Raymond C. Smith killed two men and injured a woman in a Bell County shooting, then killed himself in Knox County, officials said.

Kentucky State Police said Smith, 51, shot himself at a cemetery at Flat Lick after he killed Michael Smith, 50, and Michael Smith's son, Mychael Dustin Smith, 21, and wounded Michael Smith's daughter, Robin Smith, also 21. Authorities would not elaborate on their relationships.

Knox County Coroner Mike Blevins said he pronounced Raymond Smith dead at the Knox County Hospital. Blevins said relatives found Raymond Smith at the cemetery.

Kentucky State Police trooper Shane Jacobs said Smith shot himself at his father's grave, and a handgun was found there. Police said they don't know why Raymond Smith shot the others.

Each victim in Bell County was shot one time.

The Kentucky State Police Post in Harlan received a call at 9:42 a.m., reporting that Raymond Smith had shot three people in Pineville.

Bell County Deputy Coroner Jason Steele said Michael Smith and his son were pronounced dead at 10:15 a.m. Robin Smith was airlifted to University of Tennessee Medical Center. Her condition was not available.

Smith, a Democrat in a heavily Republican county, spent a turbulent four years as judge-executive. He feuded with the county jailer and closed the jail; went through a bitter divorce and a bankruptcy in which a creditor accused him of fraud; and was charged with assaulting a bank employee trying to repossess equipment from Smith, who had been in the coal business.

In May 2006, a state audit raised questions about $2.7 million in county spending. In March 2008, Smith admitted that during his term from 2002 to 2006, he had false bids prepared for county projects to cover the fact that companies owned by him or his relatives did the work. Smith mailed false information to a state auditor, which resulted in a mail-fraud charge, according to a court document.

Smith was sentenced in August 2008 to 2½ years in prison and was ordered to pay $110,000 in restitution.

Rachel Aretakis: (859) 231-3197. Twitter: @HLpublicsafety.Bill Estep: (606) 678-4655. Twitter: @billestep1

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