Thursday, August 30, 2012

Kingsport man pleads guilty to making false child rape charge

Story reported here:

BLOUNTVILLE — A Kingsport man has pleaded guilty to reporting false child rape allegations against his father, among other offenses.

Joshua David Lynn Thompson, 25, 130 E. Carters Valley Road, pleaded guilty Wednesday in Sullivan County Criminal Court to filing a false police report, exhibition of materials to a minor, introduction of contraband (drugs) into a penal institution, and felony failure to appear.

An investigation of Thompson's allegations had prompted a child rape charge against his father, James David Thompson. The elder Thompson was acquitted following a one-day trial in November 2010.

In June 2010, during a hearing in his father's case, Joshua Thompson testified he never saw his father "messing with" the alleged victim or engaged in a sexual act. He also said he did not recall having told a Sullivan County Sheriff's Office investigator otherwise.

During that hearing, the judge warned Thompson he could be charged with perjury if he was caught lying under oath or with making a false police report if it was later determined that he had lied to the investigator. The judge also told him a witness can avoid a perjury charge if false testimony is amended to the truth before leaving the witness stand.

After being cautioned, Thompson continued to insist that he never told the investigator he'd seen his father and the girl engaged in sexual activities, reiterating several times that he had "never seen anything."

Thompson's testimony included the following statement: "I never did hear (the alleged victim) cry at night. And (she) did go into Dad's room freely. I never did have sex with (her). The only thing I ever seen -- I went to live with my grandmother when I was 16 -- the only time I ever seen anything and it wasn't never any sexual acts. I was just assuming that anything was going on -- she was probably 17 or 18, that's around the time she got pregnant. (Her mother) would go to work, she would work graveyard, and (the alleged victim) would go into Dad's room. But as far as me seeing anything, I've never seen 'em kiss or have sex, or..." he concluded.

In exchange for Thompson's guilty plea to the false report charge, the state agreed to dismiss an aggravated perjury charge. His other guilty pleas stemmed from separate cases.

The exhibition of materials to a minor charge stemmed from Thompson's display of pornographic material to a minor. The contraband charge stemmed from drugs he had in his possession during a booking into the Sullivan County jail. The failure to appear charge stemmed from a court appearance that he missed after a court security officer spotted him running from the courthouse in February.

Court officers told the judge his sudden flight might have been prompted by an attachment for overdue child support. He was arrested on that attachment and the other charges in March.

According to Sullivan County Assistant District Attorney Julie Canter, Thompson received an eight-year sentence with 35 percent service required, with four years suspended in favor of supervised probation.