© 2024 Louisville Public Media

Public Files:
89.3 WFPL · 90.5 WUOL-FM · 91.9 WFPK

For assistance accessing our public files, please contact info@lpm.org or call 502-814-6500
89.3 WFPL News | 90.5 WUOL Classical 91.9 WFPK Music | KyCIR Investigations
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Stream: News Music Classical

Timeline: The investigation into former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel

Jamey Noel being handcuffed by Clark County Sheriff's Office deputies.
Giselle Rhoden
/
LPM
Former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel was taken back into custody in April after being out on bond for several months. He's currently being held on a near4ly $1.5 million bond.

It’s been more than a year since Indiana State Police opened an investigation into former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel, following information on potential criminal activity when he was in office.

A lot has happened since.

Last June, Clark County Sheriff Scottie Maples alerted Indiana State Police to evidence of “troubling and potentially criminal behavior” under former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel, who held the job from 2015 to 2022.

The initial discoveries have led to a sprawling investigation of Noel, his family and associates.

To date, police have been granted 61 search warrants in the investigation, led by Lt. Jeffrey Hearon.

Investigators have seized high-end vehicles, computers, phones, clothing, household goods and appliances, a small airplane, a train and scores of financial documents.

Amid the investigation, Noel has stepped down as chair of the Clark County Republican Party and Indiana’s 9th Congressional District Republican Party, and been ousted as head of the Utica Township Volunteer Firefighters Association, also known as New Chapel EMS.

He’s being sued by New Chapel EMS and Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita. His late brother’s children have filed a petition to reopen their father's estate, alleging Noel defrauded them out of their full inheritance.

In April, Noel was sentenced to 60 days in jail for violating the terms of his bond. In June, he was charged with six new felonies — for a total of 31 — and a judge raised his bond to $1.5 million.

Here is a timeline of Jamey Noel’s criminal investigation and related lawsuits. 

June 2023 - Indiana State Police open an investigation into former Clark County Sheriff Jamey Noel after current Sheriff Scottie Maples alerts them to potential criminal activity during Noel’s time in office.

Aug. 16, 2023 - Indiana State Police serve search warrants at Noel’s home, barn and several locations of Utica Township Volunteer Firefighters Association, also known as New Chapel EMS. At the time of the warrants, Noel is the president and CEO of the organization.

Nov. 8, 2023 - Noel is charged with 15 felonies — for theft, corrupt business influence, obstruction of justice, ghost employment and official misconduct. He’s arrested and jailed overnight in Scott County.

Nov. 9, 2023 - Noel appears for an initial hearing where a not guilty plea is entered. He’s released the same day on a $75,000 bond. Conditions of his release require him to turn over all firearms except one shotgun for personal protection.

Initial court records show Noel is accused of selling or trading high-end New Chapel vehicles for personal gain, and using sheriff’s office employees to do work on his personal properties on county time.

Nov. 16, 2023 - The court releases more than 600 pages of initial investigatory records. They provide more insight into accusations against Noel and what police have seized, including vehicles. Investigators also link former Scott County Sheriff Kenny Hughbanks to the investigation, though he is not criminally charged.

Nov. 22, 2023 - Southern Indiana officials discuss EMS service in light in Noel’s arrest and his leadership of New Chapel. The organization is contracted to provide EMS service to all of Clark and most of Floyd County. LPM News later learned Noel was placed on administrative leave as head of New Chapel following his arrest.

Nov. 29, 2024 - Investigators serve new search warrants in Clark and Scott counties.

Dec. 14, 2023 - Information from recent warrants is released alleging Noel and others kept government surplus equipment given to the sheriff’s office. The information also asserts that he used the sheriffs office commissary to pay Hughbanks for consulting work.

Dec. 18, 2023 - New information is released on a previous warrant to seize a 1958 Cessna plane which records show was titled in Noel’s name at the start of the investigation and later transferred to New Chapel. State police confirm they have the plane.

Jan. 9, 2024 - New information from search warrants accuses Noel of using New Chapel funds to pay child support to former Clark County Council member Brittney Ferree. She took office in 2019, the same time Noel was starting his second term as sheriff.

Jan. 11, 2024 - Noel’s defense team appeals the conditions of his bond, saying in filings the $75,000 “bond amount is excessive, and conditions imposed are unreasonable.”

Jan. 16, 2024 - During a hearing for Noel, special prosecutor Ric Hertel says he plans to file charges against Noel’s wife, Misty. Hertel also says there could be additional defendants.

Jan. 16, 2024 - Clark County GOP Vice Chair Connie Sellers resigns amid the investigation into Noel. She says the situation is affecting the morale of the local Republican Party ahead of the primary election, in which she is on the ballot as a commissioner candidate.

Jan. 20 - Noel tenders his resignation as Indiana’s 9th Congressional District Republican Party chair after more than a decade. He also sends a notice to members of an upcoming caucus to replace him. Noel is also at this time head of the Clark County Republican Party.

Jan. 22, 2024 - New search warrant information is released including accusations Noel used his position as sheriff to secure a pension for his brother in law he wasn’t entitled to. Records also provide more information on Brittney Ferree, who police say approved funding for New Chapel while she was on the council and in a relationship with Noel.

Jan. 26, 2024 - Noel signals he’s stepping down as Clark County Republican Party Chair, a position he’s held since 2009. He notifies precinct committee people of an upcoming caucus to replace him.

Jan. 29, 2024 - Information is released on new warrants served in Noel’s case, total of 35 to date. The new records detail vehicles police say were “suspiciously transferred or sold” from the Clark County Sheriff’s Office to New Chapel.

Jan. 31, 2024 - Noel’s wife, Misty, is charged with 10 felonies for theft and tax evasion, amid allegations she used a New Chapel credit card for personal purchases and didn’t claim them on her taxes. She turns herself in that week and is held in jail over the weekend. Noel is also given the same charges.

Feb. 1, 2024 - Jackson County Republican Party Chair Amanda Lowery is selected to lead Indiana’s 9th Congressional District Republican Party, replacing Noel.

Feb. 5, 2024 - Jamey and Misty Noel appear in court on theft and tax evasion charges. Misty is released on a $30,000 bond after spending the previous weekend in jail. Noel remains out on his initial bond.

Feb. 8, 2024 - Former Indiana Republican Sen. Ron Grooms is named as Noel’s replacement as Clark County GOP chair. In an interview, he says Noel has been an effective leader and says it’s too early to know whether the investigation will affect the party or the upcoming primary elections.

Feb. 9, 2024 - New search warrants are released and include accusations that Noel’s daughter, Kasey, used a New Chapel credit card for personal purchases.

Feb. 13, 2024 - Floyd County officials start talks on EMS bids ahead of the end of New Chapel’s contract in May. The nonprofit, which Noel previously ran, was one of two organizations that submitted bids to cover Floyd County.

Feb. 15, 2024 - The Indiana State Board of Accounts files a report from an investigation into Noel’s use of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office commissary fund. It includes information on Noel paying Kenny Hughbanks, the former Scott County sheriff, for consulting work. Auditors found Noel and Hughbanks responsible for repaying a combined more than $900,000 to the sheriff's office and the state.

March 7, 2024 - New records show investigators have located more than two dozen shipping containers, a forklift and a Jeffersonville Powder Plant Plymouth train in the investigation. They’re at a property in Deputy, Indiana.

March 6, 2024 - Kasey Noel is charged with nine felonies for theft and tax evasion for accusations of her New Chapel spending. She turns herself in and spends the weekend in custody awaiting her initial hearing.

March 8, 2024 - The children of Noel’s brother allege Noel defrauded them out of their full inheritance. They ask for their father’s estate, which Noel managed, to be reopened.

March 11, 2024 - Kasey Noel appears in court for nine felony charges. She’s later released on a $20,000 bond.

March 14, 2024 - New Chapel President and CEO Matt Owen holds a news conference during which he outlines new oversight practices to prevent mismanagement of finances and assets. He says Noel was placed on administrative leave in November before being terminated in January.

Indiana State Police serve a new search warrant at Noel's home, now the 45th in the investigation. They seize high-end clothing including a $3,000 purchase they say Noel made in December. Police also find two handguns, in violation of his bond conditions.

March 19, 2024 - Noel is ordered to appear in court after investigators find two handguns at his Jeffersonville home while executing a search there. Under his bond conditions, he was to keep only one shotgun.

March 27, 2024 - The Floyd County Commissioners vote to reject New Chapel’s bid for ambulance service, in part due to incomplete financial information in their submission.

April 3, 2024 - Information from new search warrants is released including allegations Noel used New Chapel funds to pay for vacations and more than $50,000 at a cigar shop.

April 9, 2024 - Noel appears in court to answer to why guns were found at his home. Special Judge Larry Medlock finds him in contempt and sentences him to 60 days in jail. “60 Days In” is the title of a reality show that featured Noel while he was Clark County Sheriff.

April 13, 2024 - Noel’s attorney asks for a stay in a civil lawsuit filed against him by New Chapel in March. An attorney for the organization said they had not been able to access two credit card accounts in Noel’s name.

April 23, 2024 - New Chapel President and CEO Owen says the organization still has assets tied up in the investigation, and that they’re paying close to $20,000 a month in finance payments on high-end vehicles they don't have access to.

April 29, 2024 - The Indiana State Board of Accounts files a second investigation report related to the case, this one looking into the nonprofit's financial activity between 2019 and 2023. Auditors say Noel and his family are responsible for repaying more than $4 million in New Chapel funds they’re accused of spending or benefitting from.

May 2, 2024 - Information from a new search warrant is released alleging a three-year relationship between Noel and Clark County Chief Deputy Auditor Jessica Huffman. Records show they had been communicating about the criminal and state board of accounts investigation up to October 2023. The auditor is the fiscal officer of the county. Responsibilities of their office include payroll, accounts payable and receivable, assisting with the county budget and tax distribution.

May 9, 2024 - After further investigation, police say Jessica Huffman, a deputy auditor, had been using her credentials to get information on sheriff’s office employees. Records show Noel had been assisting her for a future run for political office. A Clark County representative confirms to LPM News that Huffman is no longer employed there.

May 10, 2024 - Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita sues Noel, his family and others to repay millions of dollars outlined in the two state board of accounts reports.

May 20, 2024 - Noel, his wife and three daughters appear in court in Washington County and agree to extend a temporary restraining order preventing them from disposing of assets.

June 4, 2024 - Noel appears in court to answer to six new felony charges — now a total of 31 level 5 and level 6 felonies. Allegations include that he continued to use New Chapel funds after his arrest and after he left the organization. Special Judge Larry Medlock raises his bond to $1.5 million, days before he was scheduled to be released from his 60-day sentence for contempt.

June 18 - Noel and his family are allowed to use money they earned from their jobs while not selling or transferring other assets.

June 20, 2024 - The Indiana Court of Appeals denies Noel’s appeal on his initial bond conditions.

July 3, 2024 - Judge Medlock approves new search warrants including money spent on travel, utilities, bridge tolls, Cincinnati Reds purchases and Rolex watches.

Noel remains in custody in Scott County. His trial is scheduled for Nov. 6, the day after the General Election. Indiana State Police recently confirmed the case remains under investigation.

Coverage of Southern Indiana is funded, in part, by Samtec Inc., the Hazel & Walter T. Bales Foundation, and the Caesars Foundation of Floyd County.

Aprile Rickert is LPM's Southern Indiana reporter. Email Aprile at arickert@lpm.org.

Can we count on your support?

Louisville Public Media depends on donations from members – generous people like you – for the majority of our funding. You can help make the next story possible with a donation of $10 or $20. We'll put your gift to work providing news and music for our diverse community.