Man arrested following alleged murder in Montpelier community

A man was arrested following an alleged murder in the Montpelier community of Adair County.

According to Kentucky State Police, 57-year-old Joseph South is charged with murder and four counts of wanton endangerment – first degree in the Saturday morning shooting death of 86-year-old Earl Coffey at his residence on Old Montpelier Road.

Reports are that South was being evicted from a residence he was renting from Coffey, which led to South going to Coffey’s residence Saturday morning sometime around 7 a.m. and firing several rounds from a firearm into the residence.

When police arrived on scene, South was reportedly sitting near an outbuilding directly across the road. Police were able to make their way into the residence and bring Coffey out of the building and take him to an EMS unit waiting nearby. Coffey was pronounced deceased at TJ Sampson Hospital later in the morning.

Police returned to the scene and attempted to take South into custody, but deputies with the Adair County Sheriff’s Office eventually tased him before being able to place him in custody.

South was lodged in the Adair County Regional Jail.


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Zac Oakes is the News and Sports Director for and Laker Country WJRS 104.9 FM.