White arraigned in LaRue Circuit Court

-A A +A

Accused intends to hire private attorney

By Sarah Bennett

Two Hardin Countians arrested in connection with the death investigation of Kristie Allen, a Buffalo woman found dead Dec. 30 in a LaRue County home, were arraigned Monday in LaRue Circuit Court.

Samantha Kolley, 19, of Elizabethtown, and Abdullah White, 35, of Radcliff, pleaded not guilty to the charges. Both are charged with theft by unlawful taking-automobile and complicity, and White faces additional charges of second-degree burglary, second-degree persistent felony offender and being a fugitive out of Tennessee.

Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Whitney Meredith said prosecutors have verified White was wanted for probation violations for drug-related felony convictions, meaning his persistent felony offender status can be upgraded to first degree.

“We anticipate keeping him here until this case is resolved before sending him to Tennessee,” Meredith said.

Earlier this month, Norman Chaffins, public affairs officer for Kentucky State Police Post 4 in Elizabethtown, said White had not made contact with his probation officer since Nov. 7.

Allen, 28, was house-sitting for a friend when her mother, Beverly Allen, went to check on her, according to an arrest warrant.

The warrant alleges Beverly Allen saw White leave the home and flee the scene in her daughter’s 2007 Toyota Camry with an unknown woman behind the wheel. Police believe the driver to be Kolley.

Allen’s body was found inside the home, but her death has yet to be ruled a homicide as police continue to wait for an autopsy report. On Monday, LaRue County Coroner Todd Skaggs said the autopsy results are incomplete.

Chaffins has previously said KSP is “leaning” toward homicide and will present its death investigation to the LaRue County grand jury once the autopsy is completed.

Because KSP’s investigation is ongoing and more charges are likely pending, Meredith requested future court dates be scheduled late in the summer.

“We do anticipate more charges are coming,” she said Monday in the courtroom.

Judge John David Seay ultimately scheduled a pretrial conference June 29 and a jury trial July 9.

In district court, Kolley and White were represented by a public defender from the Department of Public Advocacy. In his financial records, White had indicated he has no income. However, Monday, he told Seay he intended to retain a private attorney.

White remains lodged at the LaRue County Detention Center in lieu of a $500,000 cash bond. For now, his most serious charge is a Class C felony, which is punishable by up to 10 years if convicted.

When public defender Landon Tingle, who stood in for purposes of arraignment Monday, requested a “significant bond reduction,” Meredith said White has prior felony convictions, including a murder conviction, and spent four to five days on the run prior to his Jan. 4 arrest.

“I believe he is a flight risk,” she said.

Kolley is released on a $50,000 unsecured bond and is not allowed to have any contact with Allen’s family.

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