Willard Smith was convicted of conspiracy to buy votes and vote buying in the May 1998 Knott County primary election. He was accused of paying impoverished, handicapped, illiterate, or otherwise impaired persons to vote for Knott County Judge-Executive Donnie Newsome by absentee ballot. Smith was sentenced to two years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
Charles “Chuck” Hart, of Salt Lick, Kentucky, was found guilty of vote buying, obstruction of justice, and lying to federal agents. He bought votes during a Bath County primary election, and subsequently tried to contact and pressure jurors to rule in his favor. Hart was sentenced to 33 months’ federal imprisonment.