Acting Transportation Secretary Bill Nighbert (search) has been indicted for violating the Kentucky whistleblower law and seeking revenge against a public employee.

The indictment was returned by the same special grand jury that's investigating hiring practices within Gov. Ernie Fletcher's administration. Fletcher pardoned Nighbert and eight others for previous charges. The latest allegation was for actions taken partly after the Aug. 29 pardon.

The indictment says the target of Nighbert's ire is Missy McCray (search). McCray testified today before the grand jury, shortly before it returned the indictment.

The indictment alleged that between Aug. 1 and Sept. 16, Nighbert rejected a supervisor's recommendation that McCray get an award for superior work because she testified to the grand jury. Furthermore, the indictment says, Nighbert said to McCray "that if it were 20 years ago 'I probably would have come back there and socked you in the mouth."