Journal-Times (Grayson, KY)

Local News

December 18, 2013

Surprises abound in manslaughter trial


Dec. 18, 2013 —

Asstistant Commonwealth's Attorney Derrick Willis vehemently denied that Rice had been coerced to give false testimony.

“I never, ever once threatened Mr. Rice. We had a very pleasant conversation. I never said he had to testify that Mr. Cathey kicked Mr. Toney in the head. I asked him to tell the truth,” said Willis. “I fight hard in court but I play by the rules,” he added.

Rice’s recantation of his earlier statements regarding Cathey kicking Toney put prosecutors in the unusual position of having to impeach the testimony of their own witness.

They did so by calling Steele, the lead investigator, and James West, a former Kentucky State Police detective now with the City of Covington. Both said Rice had told them unequivocally that Cathey had kicked Toney in the head.

Testimony on Tuesday was expected to conclude the trial.

Leeann Akers can be reached at or by phone at 474-5101. Journal-Times staff writer Joe Lewis and Ashland Daily Independent Staff Writer Ken Hart both contributed to this story.

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