Special judge to preside over Peveler cases

A special judge will preside over the cases of the former Hopkinsville High School band director charged with rape and the former assistant commonwealth’s attorney accused of tampering with a witness in her husband’s case.

A not guilty plea was entered during arraignment by attorney Sands Chewning Wednesday on behalf of 30-year old Seth Peveler for four counts of third-degree rape, four counts of third-degree sodomy and one count of unlawful transaction with a minor.

He is accused of having sexual relations with a minor female at his home and in the band closet at Hopkinsville High School on multiple occasions in 2017 and 2018. Hopkinsville police allege he provided marijuana to a juvenile female at his home in the summer of 2017 before having her perform a sex act on him and the indictment notes he held a position of special trust with the victims as their teacher.

Circuit Judge John Atkins noted that he and Judge Andrew Self have recused themselves from the case and set a pre-trial conference for September 4, assuming that’s suitable to the judge who is appointed.

Meanwhile, a not guilty plea to three counts of tampering with a witness was entered by attorney Stephanie Mize for 29-year old Hannah Peveler, who resigned from the commonwealth’s attorney’s office last month.

Her indictment alleges that between May 9 and June 5 of this year, she attempted to convince a witness to avoid testifying in an official court proceeding with intent to influence the outcome in the potential case.