Local News

Indian Head Rock Case Goes to Federal Court

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway has filed a federal civil suit against the city of Portsmouth, Ohio, and three men over the Indian Head Rock case.  Conway believes they’re holding stolen property.

The story began when an Ohio man found the long-submerged Indian Head Rock in the Ohio River, rallied help to lug the 8-ton boulder onto shore, and returned to Portsmouth a hero and citizen historian.  But Kentuckians weren’t celebrating.  The rock is protected under Kentucky law because of its historical significance as a high-water mark for the river and other unique carvings.  Kentucky Attorney General’s office spokesperson Allison Martin says it’s unfortunate events have led to court.

“Parties stole this antiquity, a registered antiquity from the Commonwealth of Kentucky.  We tried to negotiate with those parties to get it returned.  They didn’t return it. So they really left us with no choice,” says Martin.

Martin says Conway hopes to win the rock back and possibly display it in Kentucky.  It’s currently sitting in a Portsmouth city warehouse, awaiting its fate.