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Defense attorney questions ‘smoking gun’ of Logsdon murder case

By Allyson Dix, Barren County Progress Managing Editor

Defense presents machine report discrepancies in Logsdon murder case ahead of adversarial bond hearing.

Defense attorney for Cheryl Leighanne Bennett, John Olash, holding a document he presented to the court on Monday prior to being granted an adversarial bond hearing for his client. Photo by Allyson Dix (via Zoom)

On Monday, February 5, John Olash, defense attorney for Leighanne Bennett, presented documents he received on Friday indicating the timestamps on Michael Logsdon’s BiPAP machine at the time of his death were not the same as the machine timestamps the Commonwealth has presented in the case resulting in the murder indictments of Logsdon’s youngest daughter, and later, his wife, Cheryl Donna Logsdon.

While Barren County Circuit Judge John A. Alexander would later summarize Olash’s comments as not being any type of summary judgement motion or dismissal of a case, but were relevant to the Feb. 15 adversarial bond hearing he granted for Bennett.

Olash first presented what he called a timestamp usage report, a document that he referred to as “basically the smoking gun of the case.”

“This is what is responsible for the indictment,” Olash said, holding a paper up for viewing. “It shows the BiPAP record that the medical examiner relied on and give an opinion that Michael Logsdon – the deceased – his BiPAP machine was turned on and off on ten occasions during the six, seven hours before the 911 call was made.”

Olash pointed out the report was lacking a machine number and said, “I have found that this report came from a machine other than the one Mr. Logsdon was breathing into on the day he died.”

The defense attorney detailed that Logsdon’s Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) diagnosis was in Jan. 2022 and in Feb. 2022, Logsdon was first prescribed the BiPAP machine, noting it was a breathing assist machine and not a ventilator.

At that time, Olash said, “His daughter Terri Jo [Harris] moved in with him and was the primary caregiver during this period.”

He said Logsdon, during the time frame from Feb. 23, 2022 until April 15, 2022, was on a BiPAP ending in serial number #4002. On April 15, 2022, according to Olash, #4002 was replaced with machine #8927.

Commonwealth attorney Kori Bumgarner interjected that she hasn’t received any of the information Olash was presenting.

“I just got it Friday,” Olash said, “but my client’s in jail, so I want to bring this to the court’s attention.”

“#8927 is a machine that the Commonwealth claims, okay, claims is at the Glasgow Police Department, and they’re claiming that the machine is responsible for this report…but the report which I showed you, if you look at the part that’s highlighted, BiPAP machine #2, in the case, that machine was returned to the company on [July 18]. So how could that machine [Logsdon] was blowing into, which produced this report and is at the Glasgow Police Department, be returned to the provider on the 18th, four days after it was saying the machine was returned to the Glasgow Police Department?” Olash said.

The “smoking gun of the case”, according to defense attorney John Olash. Pictured is a timestamp document that Olash claims is from a different machine than the one Michael Logsdon was using on the night he died. Photo by Allyson Dix (via Zoom)

Olash also stated he sought clarification and found that, “The compliance report of Michael Logsdon – including the last day with the timestamp and usage of the patient – it generated a report and that serial number is 4002. This document from Adapt Health indicates that the document, which is the crux of the Commonwealth’s case, this was produced by a machine that was Michael Logsdon’s first machine #4002 which failed, taken out of service on April 15 [2022].”

Barren County Circuit Judge John A. Alexander listens to comments from John Olash, defense attorney of Cheryl Leighanne Bennett who is charged in the death of her father, Michael Logsdon. Photo by Allyson Dix (via Zoom)

“…And coincidentally, and what’s really interesting and makes this even a little more sinister, not from the prosecution standpoint but from what I think this was his primary caregiver, that this document here taken off Michael Logsdon’s cell phone, which Terri Jo Harris had access to 12 days after #4002 was taken out of service and replaced with the other machine,” Olash added.

Olash said he has obtained other records he will show in the upcoming hearing, which he believes are authentic records, showing the machine broke down around 2 a.m. and was never turned on again the morning of Logsdon’s death.

“It’s a malfunctioning case and not a case where somebody manipulated his machine,” the defense attorney said.

Olash asked the court to release Bennett based on “this proof” and Judge Alexander granted an adversarial bond hearing. The judge also pointed out the Commonwealth not been privy to the presented information, but that Olash did acknowledge knowing such at the start of his statements.

Alexander said, “Whether or not any of this is convincing at this time, but I certainly think you have established your client’s entitled to have a hearing, so we’re going to have one.”

Bumgarner stated she has a separate bench trial on the hearing date but “the Commonwealth will be prepared.”

An agreed order was signed on Monday for Adapt Healthcare to provide copies of Logsdon’s complete BiPAP medical records from Feb. 2022 through July 10, 2022 to both the Commonwealth and defense attorneys. The next hearing is Feb. 15 at 1:30 p.m. in the Barren County Circuit Courtroom.

 

Cheryl Leighanne Bennett appeared in court earlier this week where her defense attorney questioned the “crux” of the case. Photo by Allyson Dix (via Zoom)

1 Comment

  1. Chris Calkins on February 23, 2024 at 2:39 pm

    John Olash is the king of criminal law in Louisville so I’m sure he’ll also be the king in Glascow. I think they are innocent. My opinion — which I’m entilted to have and state. What does everyone else think?

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