Press release from Henderson County District Attorney’s Office
As the sun was setting on 2012, the sun was also setting on James Earl Ray’s time as a Henderson County resident. Ray, known on the street as “King James” was sentenced to 18 years in prison for crack cocaine.
Ray, 40 years old and formerly of Malakoff, plead guilty while a jury awaited the state’s first witness in the 173rd Judicial District Court with Judge Dan Moore presiding. Henderson County Assistant District Attorneys Justin Weiner and Nancy Rumar prosecuted the case on behalf of Scott McKee’s District Attorney’s office.
A little over a year prior to his sentence on Dec. 8, 2011, the Henderson County Drug Task Force and members of the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office Command Staff executed a search warrant on Ray’s residence. Immediately after making entry into the home, Ray was seen fleeing from the bathroom with his hands dripping wet. The toilet was running which indicated that it had recently been flushed. Some speculated that Ray had flushed a quantity of narcotics when he realized that law enforcement was at his home.
During the search of the home, the Task Force located a number of items confirming Ray’s involvement in drug transactions. Crack cocaine was found throughout the house along with razor blades used to size the rocks, a large amount of cash mostly in small bills, and a cell phone with text messages detailing various drug transactions. The residence was also home to two children. The search also revealed digital scales with cocaine residue found sitting on a baby’s highchair. Ray was the only person present at the time the search warrant was executed.
An additional warrant was also executed to search Ray’s cellular phone which indicated that he was trafficking in narcotics.
Following the sentence, Weiner said: “[T]his is a great example of why it is so important that our office works so hard with law enforcement and continues to fight and investigate these cases on the eve of and throughout trial.”