Court order banned Berea man from house where he held hostages, records say

Gene Charlton
Gene Charlton

A Berea man surrendered to police Wednesday about nine hours after he took a mother and her two children hostage, Kentucky State Police said.

Gene Charlton, 50, was taken into custody shortly after 9 a.m. and was charged with three counts of kidnapping, police said.

He also was charged with violating an emergency protection order he had received Saturday, according to court records. The order said Charlton couldn’t be within 500 feet of the house on Haiti Road in Berea where he held the woman, a 17-year-old and a 9-year-old overnight.

Charlton was lodged in the Madison County jail.

During the standoff, no shots were fired and no one was injured or harmed, but some surrounding homes were evacuated, said Trooper Robert Purdy, spokesman for the state police post in Richmond. He didn’t know how many houses were evacuated.

A Kentucky State Police special response team was at the site on East Haiti Road for several hours while Charlton was inside. Officers were in contact with Charlton via phone.

Berea officers initially received a report of a disturbance just after midnight in a neighborhood off Ky. 21 and behind Cracker Barrel and Wal-Mart, Berea police spokesman Lt. Jake Reed said.

“When the officers got there, they determined pretty quick they had a barricade situation,” Reed said. “So they backed off and we started evacuating the homes near this home.”