Thomas Jerry Hudson, 75, appeared before Putnam Circuit Court Senior Judge Diana LaViolette where he pleaded guilty to one count of child molestation, a class C felony with a maximum sentence of eight years. Hudson is now serving a two-year federal prison sentence for passport fraud. Police alleged Hudson obtained a fake passport and fled to Venezuela to avoid charges that he molested a 9-year-old relative in 2004.
Hudson is being held in the Putnam County Jail, awaiting a sentencing hearing at 1 p.m. Feb. 28. His plea comes after the judge agreed last fall to move his trial from Nov. 28 to Jan. 16.
Putnam County Prosecutor Tim Bookwalter said he was pleased by Hudson's decision to plead guilty and avoid a trial.
"I'm glad that he worked it out so we don't have to put the victim through a trial," Bookwalter said.