HENDRICKS COUNTY, Ind. — A man in Hendricks County is facing charges of rape and child seduction.
A probable cause affidavit filed in Hendricks County alleges 39-year-old Chester Thomas performed unwanted sexual acts with a juvenile on multiple occasions over a stretch of more than five years. The document also indicated Thomas gave the juvenile unwanted sexual attention numerous times.
According to court documents, Thomas used force to initiate the sexual acts. Investigators also reported that a person they talked to said Thomas was nearly caught performing sexual acts on the victim, but he talked his way out of the situation by claiming he was praying over the juvenile.
The probable cause affidavit also reported that, though they were not privy to Thomas’ acts against the juvenile, some parishioners at a church said Thomas gave them the “creeps” when he attended services.
The document also reports that detectives brought Thomas in for an interview during their investigation. Thomas refused to sign a waiver of rights and stated he’d like to get an attorney before he did an interview.
Investigators told Thomas his attorney should reach out to get a separate interview set up. No attorneys contacted the investigative team on Thomas’ behalf.
The victim told police Thomas’ actions caused mental and emotional distress. The victim added that they had been in a depressed state for an extended period because Thomas was “using pedophilia” on them.
Thomas’ initial hearing in Hendricks County Superior Court was scheduled for Monday. The case was opened on Sept. 6.
Below are the formal charges brought against Thomas:
- One count of rape compelled by force or imminent threat of force — Level 3 Felony
- Two counts of child seduction — Level 5 and 6 Felonies
- One count of neglect of a dependent — Level 6 Felony
If convicted, Thomas would face between three and 16 years in prison on his most serious charge.