Politics

Conway's Role in Brother's Drug Probe Raises Questions One Week Before Election Day

As Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway slams his Republican Senate opponent Rand Paul for not taking the issue of drugs seriously enough, he is now facing questions about his role in aiding his brother during a criminal investigation into drug trafficking.

Matthew Conway, now an assistant commonwealth's attorney, was never charged with any crimes related to drugs, but two Louisville narcotics detectives were placed in administrative jobs pending the outcome of an internal police inquiry regarding their involvement with Conway. 

According to The Louisville Courier-Journal, Detectives Ronald Russ and Scott Wilson twice warned Matthew Conway that he was under investigation. The first warning was in 2008, while Conway was a Jefferson County prosecutor. In January 2009, another warning was issued.

In March, Matthew Conway was interviewed about the warning. He lied under oath, but then later came clean, the Courier-Journal reported.

According to the report, Detective Wilson obtained information suggesting that Matthew Conway was involved in drugs. He told Louisville attorney Scott Roby who in turn notified Matthew Conway. 

Wilson, who is reportedly a longtime acquaintance of Conway, let Roby read the complaint against Conway and called Conway to tell him he was going to search his home. He waited two days before doing so. 

The newspaper reports that a police record showed Wilson saying that he told investigators he tipped off Conway because he was skeptical of the allegations, thinking they were prompted by a domestic dispute. Conway was involved in a divorce in late 2007 and early 2008.

Jack Conway also got wind of his brother's troubles after hearing from a friend that a third detective had said during a conversation in a restaurant not to back Jack Conway in his primary because his brother was dirty. Conway then met with his brother in March, the newspaper reads.

Jack Conway insisted Monday that he did not help his brother in any meaningful way.

"My brother first notified me about the matter. I received a subsequent voicemail from an acquaintance. I advised my brother he should engage counsel. Once counsel was engaged, I was not involved in the matter," he said in a statement. 

The Jefferson County Attorney's Office in August declined to bring charges against the men after police completed a criminal investigation.

Commonwealth's Attorney David Stengel told the newspaper that he had reviewed all of the evidence gathered by police and was convinced that Matthew Conway was neither a drug user nor trafficker.

Stengel said he decided not to discipline Matthew Conway for being dishonest with investigators because he went back and corrected his statement four days later. Conway told investigators he had lied to protect Russ.

The issue of illegal drugs in Eastern Kentucky has been a mainstay of Jack Conway's issues in the election, and one he's criticized Paul about on several occasions, as recently as this week. 

The two were meeting again Monday night in their final debate.

Click here to read the Louisville Courier-Journal report.