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Beshear Honors Outstanding Prosecutors At Annual Conference

Five state and local prosecutors were awarded honors by Attorney General Andy Beshear at the annual Kentucky Prosecutors Conference today in Covington.

The conference hosted by the Office of the Attorney General’s Prosecutors Advisory Council (PAC), serves as an annual opportunity for county and commonwealth’s attorneys and state prosecutors to receive specialized training and recognition for their public service.

On Wednesday, Beshear highlighted the outstanding contributions prosecutors have made in their communities by presenting four 2019 Outstanding Prosecutors Awards and an Ian Sonego Award of Excellence.

Those receiving outstanding county or commonwealth’s attorney awards include:

  • County Attorney Hon. Virginia Harrod, serving Henry County
  • County Attorney Hon. Robert Neace, serving Boone County
  • Commonwealth’s Attorney Hon. Michelle Snodgrass, serving the 17th Judicial Circuit in Campbell County
  • Commonwealth’s Attorney Hon. Ralph Vick, representing the 45th Judicial Circuit in McLean and Muhlenberg counties.

Beshear awarded the Ian Sonego Award of Excellence to Hon. Barbara Maines Whaley of the Office of the Attorney General. Whaley has served under eight attorneys general for 36 years and prosecuted cases in more than 100 of Kentucky’s counties.

PAC established the Ian Sonego Award of Excellence in 2016 to honor the contributions of Ian Sonego, a former prosecutor, criminal appellate attorney and true champion for Kentucky prosecutors. The attributes honored by this award include perseverance in the pursuit of fairness and integrity in the criminal justice process and knowledge and respect for the law.

“This year, we are proud to honor five outstanding prosecutors for going above and beyond the call of duty,” Beshear said. “As state and local prosecutors they are on the front lines working to build a better, safer state for our families, and we see their dedication and appreciate it.”

The three-day conference takes place today through Aug. 24, at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center. The conference will provide a wide selection of seminars and presentations designed to help prosecutors try cases. Subjects include evidence collection, jury selection and understanding trauma.

A number of lectures specifically address changes in law that recently went into effect, including the state’s animal cruelty law. One presentation focuses on sharing information on how to best prosecute animal abuse cases, including collecting evidence, interviewing witnesses and preparing for trial.

Beshear said the presentation was needed to help ensure our new and current prosecutors have the information and resources they need to protect animals from abuse and prosecute those who abuse them.

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