By John L. Ross, Staff Writer
A husband and wife charged in the murder of a Flat Lick father of four were indicted in Knox County Circuit Court Friday.
Jesse Jaynes, 45, and his wife, Angela Jaynes, 39, of Walker, faced Circuit Judge Gregory Lay to receive their single-count indictment for murder. Jesse Jaynes’ attorney is Samuel Castle, while Attorney Christy Love represents Angela Jayne.
The Jaynes are each charged in the Dec. 27 shooting death of 35-year-old James Cox.
According to Kentucky State Trooper Shane Jacobs, Cox was shot two times and found on the Jaynes’ property on Bailey Branch Road.
“At first, we really weren’t sure what happened,” Jacobs said. “For some reason Mr. Cox was at the residence.”
It was unclear who made the initial call to 911 dispatch.
“During the initial interview (with the Jaynes), we were led to believe it was all self-defense,” Jacobs said, adding further investigation by the KSP and Detective Mark Mefford brought the arrest warrants the following week.
“Based on statements and the investigation…, we feel Angela Jaynes and Mr. Cox had a relationship at one point,” Jacobs said, adding police believe both Jaynes were involved in the shooting death.
Jesse Jaynes was the chief of the Stinking Creek Volunteer Fire Department and owned The Hot Spot in Barbourville. Angela Jayne was a registered nurse at St. Joseph’s Hospital.
During a January hearing, the court heard testimony from a single witness — Mefford. He said the initial 911 call led authorities to believe an intruder had been shot.
Mefford testified that Jesse Jaynes told him “he saw a man” and shot him once in the leg. That man turned out to be Cox.
Mefford testified that Cox and Jaynes ended up in a physical altercation — and that’s when Angela Jaynes came outside allegedly and shot him in the back.
It was learned during that January hearing that Cox’s fiancee, Debbie Roark, “found evidence of an affair (between Cox and Angela Jaynes) through Facebook messages.”
Mefford also alleged Jesse Jaynes had talked about luring Cox out to his Bailey Branch Road residence to administer “an old-fashioned ass whoopin’.”
It also was alleged during that hearing Cox raped Angela Jaynes earlier in 2012; however, at this time no further evidence of that allegation exists.
The victim’s sister, Penny Shown, “was aware of a long-standing relationship” between Angela Jaynes and Cox, according to Mefford’s testimony in January.
He added that Cox “was last seen alive with Angela Jaynes less than an hour before” he was killed.
Mefford testified the alleged intent of Cox’s death was one of revenge — either revenge for the alleged rape, or for the alleged affair.
When questioned whether there was any further evidence of self-defense, Mefford said “only the statements they made.”