As part of the sentence, Thompson faces two years’ probation.
Charges leveled against Thompson included attempted theft of items valued at more than $1,000 and filing a false report. Assistant District Attorney Stephen Hatchett said the plea agreement called for the recommended probation and having the false report charges dismissed if the plea was made before the issue went to trial.
Hatchett said this is the same probation offer that would have been made to anyone who did not have a previous offense.
Ross asked if restitution had been made to the businesses from which items had been stolen by the informant whose vehicle was initially searched by law enforcement officers. Hatchett reported the merchants did not seek restitution.
Tuesday’s court plea came before Ross prior to the start of the regularly scheduled Bradley County Drug Court.
Thompson said he understood he was waiving his right to a trial before a jury and his right to appeal by pleading before the case went to trial.
The case originated from a traffic stop by the Drug Task Force in which Alex Hutson’s vehicle was searched. Hutson told the officers he was in possession of stolen items and had intentions of selling them to Thompson. Hutson later helped with the investigation as an informant.
Thompson owns a flea market on Waterlevel Highway. In the investigation that followed, Bradley County Sheriff’s Office detectives used the informant to record video of transactions of Thompson buying stolen goods from him.
Some of the items the informant sold to Thompson were later found at a Cherokee Trading Company in North Carolina.
When interviewed by detectives, Thompson said he knew some of the items he had previously bought from the informant had been stolen.
“It is a sad day for everybody. Bradley County put their trust in you and you betrayed that trust,” Ross told Thompson as he stood before the judge.
Ross also said he did not want to see Thompson in his courtroom again.