Mingo Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury (right) leaves the federal courthouse in Charleston with his lawyer last month. On Thursday, Thornsbury was charged with another federal crime; he allegedly conspired to block a federal investigation into Eugene Crum, then sheriff of Mingo County.
This jail photo shows George White, who was sent to jail after selling oxycodone to a police officer. Several Mingo County officials, including Judge Michael Thornsbury, allegedly conspired to get White a light sentence if he stopped talking to federal authorities about then-Mingo Sheriff Eugene Crum.
Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum was hailed as a crusader against drugs when he was shot and killed on April 3. On Thursday, federal prosecutors alleged that Crum and other county officials stopped an investigation into whether Crum had bought oxycodone from a local drug dealer.
Mingo County Prosecuting Attorney Michael Sparks (kneeling) talks to Rosie Crum, widow of Eugene Crum, and Dave Rockel, then Williamson police chief, at the May arraignment of Tennis Maynard, Eugene Crum's alleged killer. Federal prosecutors allege that Sparks, among others, conspired to stop a federal investigation into Crum before he was killed.
9.25x7 THORNSBURYarraign2 Judge Michael Thornsbury, right, leaves Federal Courthouse with his lawyer Steve Jory after pleading not guilty Wednesday. photo by chris dorst