Crime

Combs pleads not guilty in shooting death of Perry County doctor

HAZARD — John Carles Combs pleaded not guilty Wednesday to murder charges in the death of Perry County doctor Dennis Sandlin.

Perry District Judge Leigh Anne Stephens granted an order to provide funds for expert assistance of a forensic psychologist and an order to draw a blood sample and test for controlled substances, according to court documents. A preliminary hearing that was set for Dec. 15.

Combs is unemployed and was declared indigent, according to court records. It was unclear whether he will be represented by a private attorney or a public defender.

Combs, 46, of Redfox in Knott County, was arrested Tuesday at his home after state police were tipped off that he was wanted in Sandlin's death Tuesday morning at Leatherwood/Blackey Medical Clinic in Cornettsville in Perry County.

Police said Combs shot and killed Sandlin at the clinic after refusing to take a urine test as a requirement for being prescribed pain pills.

Combs is in the Kentucky River Regional Jail in Hazard under a $10 million cash bond as well as a $1,000 bond on a resisting-arrest charge in Knott County.

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