Leslie County School Board cancels classes as manhunt continues

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LESLIE COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) Friday the halls of schools across Leslie County were empty following the school board's decision to cancel classes for the day. A manhunt from Thursday extending into Friday put school officials on high alert.

"First let me say that the number one priority of our school district is the safety of our students and our staff," said Brett Wilson, the Leslie County School's Superintendent. "We made the decision as just a precautionary measure and at no time a threat was ever made against our schools or students."

Thursday morning the body of 28-year-old Paige Murphy was found in a home after Kentucky State Police say she was shot. Police are now looking for Dustin Stidham. Stidham has two young children with Murphy and is on the run.

"I didn't want our parents and kids waking up this morning worried about being outside at the bus stop," said Wilson.

KSP officials had a helicopter looking for Stidham on Thursday but have had no luck finding him.

"Unfortunately yet, he still remains at large," said Trooper Jody Sims with KSP Post 13. "We have received pretty much a flooding of calls of people advising that they think they've seen him."

Sims said although the tips have been helpful, they have been coming in hours after people claim to see Stidham.

"It's just asked that if anyone thinks they do see him to please be kind of prompt and call as soon as they possibly can," said Sims.

Anyone with information on Stidham's whereabouts is asked to contact KSP Post 13 in Hazard.

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