Spy allegations against JBER soldier shock family's Kentucky neighbors

Associated PressNovember 3, 2011 

OWENSBORO, Ky. -- Dick York didn't believe what he'd heard, that a neighbor in Owensboro serving in the U.S. Army had been arrested on suspicion of espionage.

York, 66, described 22-year-old William Colton Millay, a specialist stationed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage, as honest and patriotic and described the allegations as "a bunch of bull."

"I have no faith in the Justice Department. I have faith in the military, but not Washington," York told The Gleaner in Henderson. "Something is wrong with this deal."

The Army arrested Millay on Friday. He's being held without bail at the Anchorage Correctional Facility. Millay is assigned to the 164th Military Police Company. Most members of that company are on a year deployment to Afghanistan that began in March, but Millay was in the company's rear detachment that stayed behind.

FBI spokesman Eric Gonzalez declined to provide details of the allegations against Millay, other than to say the Army will handle the case.

Army Lt. Col. Bill Coppernoll told The Associated Press that Millay's arrest stems from an ongoing investigation conducted by the Army and FBI.

Coppernoll said few details were being released and that the case was very early in the legal process. But unlike the WikiLeaks case targeting Army analyst Bradley Manning, allegations against Millay do "not involve the transfer of data on computer networks," Coppernoll said.

Authorities also said Millay didn't transmit any information.

At Millay's listed residence, a car with an "Army Dad" license plate was parked out front. A man who answered the door at the home in Owensboro said he had no comment and closed the door.

But the information that has been made public didn't add up to 23-year-old Lauren Moore, who lives a few houses down from Millay's family.

"He was a really outgoing person," she said. "He didn't really seem like a bad person."

Mary Moore, 52, who also lives nearby, said she hasn't had much interaction with the family, whom she described as quiet, but nice.

Based on her observations, she found the charges surprising.

"I always thought they were patriots," she said. "And I'm assuming he still is because you're innocent until proven guilty."

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