Locals react to Union Co. Judge-Executive Jody Jenkins' death

Four months after being indicted by a federal grand jury, Union County Judge-Executive Jody Jenkins was found dead early Sunday morning.

“I didn't want to believe it,” said local Jim Duckworth.

Around 5-30 a.m. Sunday morning, Union County Coroner Steven Schouse tells us Union County Judge-Executive Jody Jenkins was found dead in a rental home near Morganfield.

The cause of death is yet to be determined. The coroner tells Eyewitness News he believes no foul play was involved.

An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

Now, a county left without a Judge-Executive… and stunned.

“You know I just hate it… lost a great person. Hate it and wish it hadn't have happened,” said local Larry Winn.

“I hate it. I feel the people of Union County feel the same way as I do,” said Duckworth.

This just four months after Jenkins was indicted with four counts of fraud by a federal grand jury for allegedly taking $20,000 in kickbacks during the purchase of heavy equipment tied to an elaborate theft ring.

Jenkins was expected to stand trial May 21 for the charges. He pled not guilty.

From here Governor Matt Bevin will appoint someone to serve the remainder of Jenkins' term.

That is unless a special election is scheduled before the November general election.

"I'm deeply going to miss him, and I think the county will," said Winn.

Eyewitness News did reach out to members of the fiscal court and Jenkins' attorney. They have not yet returned calls for comment.

(This article was originally published January 21, 2018)

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