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New trial set in murder scheme case

GREENUP, Ky. - An Ironton woman accused in connection with a murder scheme will wait until next year to have her case heard by a Greenup County Circuit Court jury.

The trial of Beverly Clay, 35, of 605 Hecla St., Ironton, was originally scheduled to begin Monday.

Last week, Greenup County, Ky., Circuit Court Judge Lewis Nichols postponed Clay's trial until April 6, 2006, in light of new evidence that became available last week and because a witness was not available this week.

"There were some written statements that we all knew about but I had never seen - the defense attorney said he hadn't seen them and I had not either," Greenup County Commonwealth's Attorney Cliff Duvall said.

"I'm not sure why they were kept separate and I don't think there was any intent to hide anything, but somehow they got separated."

Clay is accused on enlisting the help of a friend, Cynthia Rusk, 26, also of 605 Hecla St., to help kill her husband,

Donald Clay. If Clay is found guilty of complicity to attempted murder, the sole charge against her, she faces 20 years in prison.

Rusk pleaded guilty to her part in the scheme last week in Greenup County Circuit Court and will be sentenced Thursday on one count of burglary and one count of attempted murder.

She also faces 20 years in prison, with eligibility of parole after 17 years.

Donald Clay, who was shot once in the chest and once in the face during what appeared to be a burglary at his Lloyd, Ky., home in late November. Donald Clay was treated and released from a local hospital. Rusk was arrested shortly after the incident.