Madison County

Accused shooter's brother, woman charged in Berea double shooting

The brother of an Army veteran accused of shooting two Berea men has been charged with complicity to murder and complicity to attempted murder for his role in the attack, authorities said Wednesday.

Ryan Denholm, 30, brother of suspect Matt Denholm, and Sherry L. Bratten, 31, were charged Tuesday, Capt. Ken Clark, Berea police spokesman, said. In addition, the two were charged with complicity to burglary. The Denholms and Bratten all live in Berea.

Ryan Denholm and Bratten were arrested Monday afternoon in Jeffersontown with Matt Denholm. Warrants on the latest charges against Ryan Denholm and Bratten were sent Tuesday to Jeffersontown police, Clark said.

Matt Denholm, 27, is charged with murder, attempted murder and burglary. An earlier assault charge was changed to attempted murder.

Matt Denholm is accused of killing Zackary Flower, 25, and wounding his roommate, Kevin Price, in an apartment building at 301 Chestnut Street, across from Berea City Hall. A relative told a TV station that Price was in critical condition at University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital.

Police said Flower and Price intervened Sunday night to help an unidentified man with whom Denholm was fighting. Denholm lost the fight but vowed to return. When he did so, he fired a shotgun through the apartment door before kicking the door open, entering the apartment and shooting Flower and Price, Clark said.

The latest charges were filed because Ryan Denholm and Bratten were present when the shootings occurred, Clark said.

"During the course of the investigation, as we found out more information, we determined that there was enough probable cause to charge them with these charges," Clark said. "We found out that these two were actually present at some time during the commission of the crimes."

Asked whether Ryan Denholm and Bratten were in a waiting vehicle or in the apartment building, Clark said, "I don't know if they actually went into the apartment, but they were there at the scene."

On Monday, police also charged Randall J. Burgess Jr. with complicity to murder, complicity to attempted murder and burglary. Burgess saw the Sunday fight that led to the shooting and heard Matt Denholm say he would return, police said.

Burgess allowed Ryan Denholm to drive Burgess's vehicle to take Matt Denholm back to Flower's and Price's apartment, police said.

Burgess pleaded not guilty Wednesday during an arraignment before Judge David Hayes in Madison District Court. A preliminary hearing is scheduled Wednesday; at that time, a judge will hear evidence and determine whether there is probable cause to send the case to a grand jury for possible indictment.

Matt Denholm was charged in Jefferson County with fleeing or evading police, three counts of wanton endangerment of a police officer, and tampering with evidence. He initially refused to leave the car in which officers spotted and stopped him Monday.

Ryan Denholm and Bratten were charged in Jefferson County with hindering prosecution/apprehension and complicity to tampering with physical evidence.

The Denholms and Bratten remain in the Jefferson County jail. The bond for Matt Denholm is $1.025 million; the bond for Ryan Denholm and Bratten is $850,000 each, according to the jail.

The Denholms and Bratten might be brought back to Madison County later this week, and a preliminary hearing might be held next week.

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