Loughry disciplinary hearing rescheduled again; Ketchum sentencing to be moved once again

By Chris Dickerson | Feb 4, 2019

Loughry  

CHARLESTON — A state Judicial Hearing Board hearing about former Supreme Court Justice Allen Loughry has been rescheduled for a second time.

And, the federal sentencing for former Justice Menis Ketchum will be rescheduled once again.

The state disciplinary hearing for Loughry now is scheduled for Feb. 20 at the Wayne County Courthouse, where acting Chairman Darrell Pratt is a circuit judge.

The hearing, related to a 32-count Statement of Charges against Loughry filed in June by the state Judicial Investigation Commission, originally was scheduled for Jan. 14. Days before that hearing, it was rescheduled for Feb. 6. The disciplinary hearing was scheduled to be heard in the Visiting Judge’s Courtroom at the Kanawha County Judicial Annex in Charleston, but that courtroom isn’t available Feb. 20.


Ketchum  

Loughry will be sentenced Feb. 13 in federal court. He was found guilty on 11 charges in October, but U.S. District Judge John Coperhaver dismissed a witness tampering charge against Loughry last month when he also denied Loughry’s request for a new trial. That date also was delayed after originally being scheduled Jan. 16. Copenhaver cited the need to allow revisions to pre-sentencing reports.

Loughry still faces sentencing on seven counts of wire fraud, one of mail fraud and two of making false statements to federal agents. Copenhaver wrote that the federal government can decide if it wants to retry Loughry on the witness tampering charge.

Loughry’s attorney had filed two motions seeking a new trial, arguing evidence was insufficient.

In response, federal prosecutors painted Loughry as “vindictive and vengeful,” “not credible,” retaliatory and one who “would not hesitate to flex his power and authority to get what he wanted.” They also said Loughry and attorney John Carr failed to provide evidence to warrant a new trial.

Loughry resigned from the state Supreme Court in November.

On Jan. 15, Copenhaver also filed an order moving Ketchum’s sentencing from Jan. 30 to Feb. 27. Soon after, Ketchum's attorney James Cagle filed a motion seeking another date because of Cagle’s wife having a surgery scheduled for Feb. 27. Cagle’s office says the hearing will be rescheduled, but the new date has yet to be determined.

Ketchum pleaded guilty in August to one count of wire fraud. He admitted to using a state-owned vehicle and a state-issued gas card for personal use for golf trips to Virginia.

Ketchum resigned from the state Supreme Court in July.

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