Before a jury could consider whether a former band director was guilty of having sex with one of his students, the decision was made for them. Thomas Pike decided to plead guilty Wednesday morning.
After maintaining his innocence for months, Thomas Pike decided to admit he had oral sex with a 14 year old student just before that victim was expected to testify against him.
Pike's trial had already begun. Prosecutors used tape phone conversations between Pike and his former student to try to show jurors the two had a relationship.
Prosecutors say the two had oral sex on several occasions in Williamsburg during band events. They were about to call the victim, now an eighteen year old, to testify, but that wasn't necessary. Pike pleaded guilty to four counts of sodomy.
The prosecutor thinks the jury would have found Pike guilty anyway, but he says this saves the young man from having to talk publicly about what he went through.
"You can imagine what it feels like for a young person to take the stand and testify about the very stressful things he would've had to testify about," said Commonwealth's Attorney Allen Trimble.
And he says Pike's guilty plea should help a young man who's been through a lot.
"A person, a teacher at school. The harm that happens to a young child, it's horrible," Trimble said.
But the prosecutor says he thinks the young man will be able to move on with his life.
The prosecutor also says the family is happy with the way everything turned out Wednesday. Thomas Pike faces up to 17 years in prison. He's scheduled to be sentenced in April, but the judge has to officially accept his guilty plea and Pike must undergo a sex offender evaluation.
Pike's charges stem from when he was a band director in Letcher County. Pike still faces dozens of counts of sodomy in Letcher County. He's pleaded not guilty to all those charges.