Grand Jury Returns Indictment In Murder of Trooper Hacker
Staff Writer


A White Oak man accused of murdering a state trooper in April was indicted Monday by the Ritchie County Grand Jury.

Dennis R. Ferguson, 67, now faces trial on the charge that he shot Trooper Larry G. Hacker on
April 8 while the trooper was responding to dispute between Ferguson and a neighbor. Hacker was shot while peering around a shed on Ferguson's property. Officers allege the elderly man fled into the woods and held police at bay for over an hour with a spray of gunfire.

Ferguson is being held in the Ritchie County Jail without bond.

Ritchie County Prosecutor David Hanlon said a trial date for Ferguson should be set Tuesday or late this week.

"(The trial) will probably be sometime in July, depending upon the scheduling," Hanlon said.

Hanlon said he didn't know if a motion would be made to seek a change of venue, but acknowledged it was a possibility in a high visibility case.

If the trial remains in Ritchie County, it would go before Circuit Judge Joseph Troisi.

Hanlon said he wants to keep the trial in Ritchie County.

"I would prefer that it remain here," he said. "It would make my job easier."

Ferguson's attorney Keith White could not be reached for comment Monday.