Thomas was indicted earlier in the year on two counts of prohibited use of an electronic communications system to procure a minor to commit a sexual offense, a class D felony. He is accused of trying to solicit sex from a girl in Canada who was 16 years old at the time.
Thomas and his attorney, Thomas K. Hall III of Beattyville, said he is now employed by a Japanese firm and Hall stated that Thomas will probably be required to travel outside the United States for his job.
Trigg County Circuit Judge C.A. Woodall gave the Commonwealth, represented in court by Commonwealth Attorney Carrie Ovey-Wiggins, time to review the request but said that until the case was resolved, he likely wouldn’t return his passport, at least not without more information.
“Until we get some prospect of getting the case resolved, the passport return opens a whole new avenue for us to consider,” Woodall said. “And while I want to believe the best about everyone, including Mr. Thomas, I’m just not sure that I would come around to doing that just on the request. I’d need a whole lot better information, an itinerary, those kind of things.”
Thomas was a network technician for the Trigg County School System at the time of his arrest. Trigg County School Superintendent Travis Hamby said the offense did not involve Trigg County students or employees and that Thomas did not work directly with students. Hamby also said that after a school investigation, Thomas was let go.
The defendant will next appear in court at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 9, for a discovery hearing, wherein both the defense and prosecution will have to provide a list of all the evidence and documents they have.
Ovey-Wiggins told the judge there is some evidence that was obtained from Thomas’s computer that they are not legally allowed to copy or redistribute.
“There will be some items under federal law that I will not be able to distribute,” Ovey-Wiggins said.
According to an affidavit by KSP Detective Michelle Kent, the 17-year-old’s mother found out last year that she had been having an inappropriate online relationship with Thomas since October 2009, although the two had never met face-to-face.
When the mother found some of the e-mails, she traced them back to Thomas, who resides on Lafayette Street in Cadiz, after which she contacted the authorities and stopped contact between the two, the affidavit stated.
Even after Thomas was told by the mother to stop contacting the juvenile, he continued to send her several on-line messages from mid-July 2010 to just a few days before his arrest, according to the affidavit.
At a previous court appearance, Thomas said he had moved to Beattyville, which is in eastern Kentucky. Hall was representing him at that time as well.