Principal now 'person of interest' in Pappy theft


by Michelle Arnold

Posted on October 27, 2013 at 9:18 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 28 at 6:13 PM

BARDSTOWN, Ky. (WHAS11) - The principal of Bardstown High School is in the spotlight and his attorney says he was stunned when he heard he could be considered as a person responsible for the theft of thousands of dollars of hard to get Pappy Van Winkle bourbon.

Chris Pickett’s attorney says the fact that he was called a person of interest is strange. Pickett and his attorney met with the Franklin County Sheriff late today.

Hubbard also says Pickett was simply stopping in to check out the whiskey selection on October 20 at the Packages and More Liquor Store in Elizabethtown.

Pickett was seen in surveillance video investigators released last week as a person of interest.

Hubbard says his client was shocked when he heard police may be looking for him.

Once Pickett found out he was a person of interest, he immediately wanted to contact the Franklin County Sheriff to be a responsible citizen and ultimately clear his name.

Hubbard says he doesn’t think it makes any sense that Pickett would be involved in this crime. Hey says the high school principal has a positive reputation in the community.

Hubbard also adds that Pickett has never been to Buffalo Trace where the bourbon was stolen nor does he know anyone from Buffalo Trace.

He says that Pickett is a bourbon collector and was in the liquor store for less than two minutes.

They didn’t have the whiskey he was looking for so he left.

Witnesses at the store claim the man in the video tried to sell them a large quantity of Pappy Van Winkle which Hubbard disputes.

The Franklin County Sheriff interviewed Pickett Monday and said he fully cooperated. The sheriff says he wouldn’t call Pickett a person of interest.

The next step in the investigation is to try to corroborate some of his statements made at the store and they are also following other leads.