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Two men wanted for manufacturing meth

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By Sarah Bennett

Local narcotics investigators are continuing their search for two men indicted in November just three weeks after the court ordered their release from jail.

Ellis Beeler, 56, and Ronald E. Brown, 50, both of Hodgenville, and Kenneth W. Priddy, 50, of Sonora originally were arrested Aug. 22 on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine.

According to police, a detective assigned to the Greater Hardin County Narcotics Task Force witnessed the men attempting to purchase pseudoephedrine at Wal-Mart in Elizabethtown. During a traffic stop later, investigators uncovered multiple packages of pseudoephedrine and other meth-making materials.

The case was forwarded to the grand jury after proceeding through Hardin District Court, according to court records. However, because indictments were not returned within 60 days, a judge ordered their release from jail.

The men were released Nov. 7 and were not assigned supervision, according to records.

A Kentucky State Police trooper located Brown in January, but Beeler and Priddy remain at-large, said Detective Rob Green, lead investigator in the case.

“I know they’re still around,” Green said Thursday.

Based on information reported to the task force, Green believes Priddy is frequenting a trailer park in the White Mills area, he said. It is possible he is driving an older model of a white Chevrolet S10 Blazer, the detective said.

Both men have ties to Hardin, LaRue and Hart counties, so it is possible they are “floating” around the area, Green said.

The detective plans to hang wanted posters featuring the two men throughout the area, particularly in southern Hardin County, he said.

Beeler and Priddy have prior drug convictions in Hardin County, according to court records.

Beeler was convicted in 2000 of possession of cocaine while Priddy was convicted in 2006 of manufacturing methamphetamine, according to records.

With a history of drug use, Green said the two men likely are continuing to use methamphetamine.

Warrants on indictment set Beeler’s bond at $50,000 cash and Priddy’s at $75,000.

Brown remains lodged at the Hardin County Detention Center in lieu of $75,000 cash bond. He is set to appear Tuesday for a pretrial conference in Hardin Circuit Court.

Sarah Bennett can be reached at (270) 505-1750 or sbennett@thenewsenterprise.com.