Sassafras, Ky. (June 19, 2020) – A woman was found shot to death inside a residence in Knott County early Friday morning, and her boyfriend is charged with murder. At around 11:20 p.m. Thursday night, Troopers with Kentucky State Police Post 13 in Hazard were called to a residence in the Sassafras community following reports of gunshots in the area. Troopers Jarret Fields and Nathan Roark arrived at the scene on Yellow Creek Road at approximately 11:40. A short time later they advised Post 13 that gunfire was heard coming from inside a residence there. Additional Troopers responded to the scene to assist and secure the area for public safety.
KSP’s Special Response Team (SRT) responded to the scene to provide support. After a lengthy barricade situation, Jeffery Skiles came out of the residence and was taken into custody without incident. KSP personnel entered the residence to check for other occupants and discovered a female deceased inside from apparent gunshot wounds. Knott County Coroner Corey Watson responded to the scene and pronounced the victim, 39 year old Jeannie Vanzant of Leatherwood, KY, deceased at 8:43 a.m.
Jeffery Skiles, age 58 of Sassafras, was charged with Murder (Domestic Violence) and Wanton Endangerment 1st degree. Additional charges are anticipated. Skiles was lodged in the Kentucky River Regional Jail pending court proceedings. An autopsy is scheduled to be performed at the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Frankfort on Saturday. The incident remains under investigation by Detective Scott Caudill with KSP Post 13.
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