NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - A 59-year-old man who owns a business in downtown Nacogdoches accepted a plea bargain deal of five years deferred adjudication in connection to a June 17 incident in which he assaulted a Stephen F. Austin State University employee and took the keys to his truck.
William "Willie" Charles Hudson appeared in Judge Edwin Klein's 420th Judicial District Court Tuesday for a plea hearing.
As part of the plea agreement, the initial charges of robbery and injury to an elderly or disabled person were dropped and a charge of unlawful restraint was added to take their place. Basically, deferred adjudication is the same thing as probation. However, if Hudson stays out of trouble with the law for the entire five-year period, the charge will be dropped from his record.
"What's important to take away from this is that a series of unfortunate events have occurred," said Stephen Shires, Hudson's defense attorney. ""What we've tried to do is come up with something that will work for everyone and allow everyone to run their businesses smoothly."
Shires said that the altercation with the SFA employee started because the employee parked illegally and Hudson wanted him to wait. The two men got into a fight, and Shires said that Hudson wanted the SFA employee to wait for police to arrive on the scene, and the other man didn't want to do that.
Clyde Herrington, the special prosecutor on the case, decided that unlawful restraint would be a more appropriate charge, Shires said. He added that he thought Herrington stepped into a difficult position and did a fine job.
As part of the plea bargain agreement, Hudson will also have to pay a $1,000 fine, do community service, and keep the strict bond conditions Kline set in a previous court hearing on Aug. 21.
In addition to the usual conditions like Hudson being unable to own a firearm, he will be required to notify the court in writing within 48 hours of any employment status or address changes. He is also banned from interfering, tampering, or obstructing any surveillance device or camera that doesn't belong to him.
"Defendant shall not contact any law enforcement agency in Nacogdoches County, including but not limited to the Nacogdoches Police Department, and the Nacogdoches County Sheriff's Office, unless the communication is necessary because of a life-threatening emergency, or to report a violent offense," the order stated. "Defendant shall submit any other complaint that he may have in writing to his attorney of record, who may then take whatever that the attorney deems appropriate."
Hudson is also not allowed to "confront, contact, or communicate" with anyone about downtown parking or fire lanes, according to the order.
The order also listed five people by name and said that Hudson isn't allowed to talk to them or their families in person or by written letters, e-mails, text, or telephone calls. Klein's order also stated that Hudson is not allowed to make contact with the employees, residents, or patrons of numerous downtown Nacogdoches businesses including Commercial Bank of Texas, the Law Offices of Adams, Belanger, Atherton, and LoStracco, Viper Security, Julia's Salon, Milford's Barber Shop, Shelley's Bakery, all the other businesses bounded by East Hospital Street, North Mound Street, Main Street, and North Fredonia Street, and any business or building owned by his landlord.
The order also limits Hudson's travel on the downtown sidewalks to the immediate vicinity of his business.
"It's no secret that Hudson has had issues with the neighbors about parking primarily," Shires said of the bond conditions. "There are a number of people he can't contact."
According to the police report, the alleged robbery occurred at the Cole Art Center, which is located at 300 Commerce Street.
Sgt. Greg Sowell, a spokesman for the Nacogdoches Police Department, said an SFA employee was making a delivery at the back of the Cole Art Center said the man told police that Hudson struck him several times in the face and head and took his keys. The delivery driver had visible bruising to his face.
Hudson was arrested at the scene and transported to the Nacogdoches County Jail. He was booked into the jail on June 17.
Business owners on North Church have filed either a restraining order or complaints against Hudson. According to Nacogdoches Police Chief Jim Sevey, if Hudson enters into any of the businesses, he will be charged with criminal trespass.