By John L. Ross / Staff Writer
Murder charges in the beating death of a Corbin man were filed Thursday against a Williamsburg man currently jailed on assault and related charges.
Whitley County Sheriff Colan Harrell said Samuel E. Plotnick, 35, was arrested Dec. 15 after allegedly assaulting 55-year-old Jimmy D. Peace, of the Corinth Community.
It happened at Peace’s home.
According to Harrell, Peace died just before midnight Wednesday in Lexington.
Harrell said he was in communication with Peace’s sister, who said Peace had been on life support for several days.
He said Peace received treatment at Baptist Regional Medical Center in Corbin and was released.
However, Harrell said days later it was discovered Peace had “very severe” internal injuries.
Fayette County Deputy Coroner John McCarty said Peace was admitted to the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington Dec. 21 and was barely responsive.
McCarty confirmed Peace sought treatment two days after the assault, but was discharged.
“He was brought back to BRMC with complications from his injuries,” McCarty said. “He was admitted (to UK) just after midnight on the 21st (of December).”
McCarty said an autopsy has been completed. “The cause of death was complications from multiple blunt force trauma injuries sustained during (the) assault,” he said.
Just before 8 p.m. Dec. 15, sheriff’s deputies, along with the Corbin Police Department, responded to a reported burglary in progress at Peace’s home.
Plotnick was found on the porch of Peace’s house by Sheriff’s Sgt. Ken Shepherd and Deputy John Hill and Corbin officers Coy Wilson, Jeff Hill and Jim Miller.
Standing with Plotnick was Peace and Plotnick’s girlfriend, 39-year-old Theresa Burnette.
Harrell said both Peace and Burnette showed visible injuries, with Peace’s mostly to his head.
Officers attempted to arrest Plotnick, but he locked his hands around a post. During a handcuff attempt, Plotnick allegedly kicked three of the officers. He also faces charges of kicking Deputy Hill during a search of his person.
“There’s no reason for this thing,” Harrell said. “We just can’t find out a reason — just all at once it looked like he (Plotnick) lit into him (Peace).”
Plotnick already faces charges of menacing, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, second-degree assault for the alleged assault on Peace, four counts of third-degree assault for the kicks to the police officers, fourth-degree assault by domestic violence, and public intoxication.
He remains jailed in the Whitley County Detention Center under an open, active cash bond of $100,000.