HARRODSBURG, Ky., July 23, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- On October 14, 1998 Regina Woodward Nickles, a fifteen year veteran and the first female officer in the history of the Harrodsburg, KY police department, went on duty at midnight. She was dispatched along with a second officer to an auto parts plant to investigate a report of a suspicious man in the parking lot. When the two arrived they observed a man lying in a field next to the factory. As officer Nickles approached the man fired two rounds striking Officer Nickles above her bullet proof vest. The second patrolman returned fire wounding the shooter. Officer Nickles would be pronounced dead at the hospital. She was survived by two daughters, her mother, brothers, step children and grandchildren.
The viewing for Officer Nickles was attended by Gov. Paul Patton. Her funeral was attended by over 1000 mourners including officers from 73 agencies. After the service over 400 police vehicles with emergency lights flashing escorted the hearse to Spring Hill cemetery.
The killer of Officer Nickles, John Paul Works, was discovered to have been charged with five offenses during the prior two years. He had been free on bail for felony assault and wanton endangerment at the time of the killing. Prosecutors sought the death penalty for Works but a Boyle County jury sentenced him to life in prison instead.
No killer of a police officer sentenced to life in prison should ever be granted parole. Attacks on police are an attack on society itself. The failure of the jury to make sure Works would never be eligible for parole must not be followed up by the Kentucky Parole Board failing to keep him behind bars.
Among the eulogies offered at the service for Officer Nickles, Rev. David Hartman, noted that: She died, of course, in the line of love. Even though she may not have known them all by name, the people she defended down through her years, were her friends. In a world of wolves, she became a shepherd. She served and protected with a shepherd's love, and in the end, she laid down her life for her friends. And there is no greater love than that.
There is no way to measure what we owe Officer Regina Woodward Nickles, or her family whose loss of her love will never be eligible for parole. The least we owe them is the denial of parole to her murderer. Written statements can be mailed to:
Kentucky Parole Board Attn: Victim Services PO Box 2400 Frankfort, KY 40602-2400
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