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Federal agency reportedly looking into suspended commonwealth’s attorney

Posted at 7:00 PM, Jan 24, 2023

(LEX 18) — It was revealed at a recent Prosecutors Advisory Council meeting that a federal agency is reportedly looking into the situation surrounding suspended commonwealth’s attorney Ronnie Goldy.

Goldy, who serves Bath, Menifee, Montgomery, and Rowan counties, was suspended last year after allegations that he traded legal favors for nude images and videos. The accusations began after the release of alleged Facebook messages between Goldy and a woman who was a defendant in criminal cases in Goldy’s district.

LEX 18 recently spoke with Misty Helton, the woman at the other end of those messages, for a second time. She said she’d been visited by an FBI agent and an assistant federal prosecutor who asked her about her relationship with Goldy.

“I didn't realize that me having contact with the commonwealth attorney while I had warrants was a big deal,” Helton said. "This has been going on so long and I'm so used to it that I didn't realize.”

Kenton County Commonwealth’s Attorney Rob Sanders, who was at the most recent Prosecutors Advisory Council meeting, confirmed that the council was informed that a federal agency was looking into the situation involving Goldy and his judicial circuit. Sanders said he imagined that investigation could take some time.

“The federal law enforcement agencies just aren't the ones taking a black eye like prosecutors in Kentucky right now,” Sanders said. “When there is a prosecutor engaging in misconduct it makes us all look bad.”

The state’s House Impeachment Committee is set to meet on Wednesday. It’s considering whether or not to recommend that impeachment proceedings begin against Goldy and another commonwealth’s attorney from western Kentucky.

“It’s really disheartening that there are multiple circuits having problems so bad that it warrants removal of the commonwealth’s attorney,” Sanders said. “But yet, here we are.”

As different entities look into Goldy’s situation, he’s continued to receive his nearly $140,000 a year salary.

“Commonwealth’s Attorney Ronnie Goldy voluntarily agreed to surrender his salary after receiving a letter from the Office of the Attorney General, advising him that if it was not surrendered that the office would seek reimbursement of his salary and stipend in court,” said Krista Buckel, a spokeswoman for the Kentucky Attorney General’s Office.

LEX 18 reached out to Goldy's attorney for comment on the reported investigation but did not hear back.