TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

February 28, 2014

Plea deal made in sodomy case

Former Girdler resident gets charges reduced


TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

CORBIN — By John L. Ross / Staff Writer

A trial has been averted in the case against a former Girdler resident arraigned in June on a pair of decade-old sodomy charges.

Jerry E. Amundsen, 43, with an address in Wasilla, Alaska, stood handcuffed before Judge Tom Jensen in Knox County Circuit Court Thursday morning.

He was scheduled for his final pretrial conference before the March 11 jury trial, but instead chose to accept the Commonwealth’s plea agreement.

Amundsen’s attorney, Jason Kinser, said there were motions for the defense which had been entered.

Jensen explained the motions were to amend the first two charges of Amundsen’s indictment — those charges were two counts of first-degree sodomy.

As part of the agreement, each of those counts was reduced to two counts of second-degree sodomy — one count for the crime which occurred Oct. 1, 2003, the other count for the crime that happened Oct. 19.

The remaining charges, at sentencing, will be dismissed, according to Jensen. That formal sentencing hearing has been scheduled for May 2.

The agreed recommendation from the Commonwealth’s attorney’s office has Amundsen sentenced to five years for each count — a total of 10 years — to be served concurrently in a five-year sentence.

Jensen requested the opportunity to review a pre-sentencing report, as well as a sex offender evaluation report.

Amundsen was remanded back into custody, and he remains jailed in the Laurel County Correctional Center — he was under a $250,000 cash bond.

It took quite an effort to get the man to Knox County for his initial court appearance in June.

According to Kentucky State Trooper Shane Jacobs, Amundsen was arrested in connection with a first-degree sodomy investigation in 2003.

The alleged victim in the case was 12 years old at the time.

In June it was learned Amundsen was indicted in 2005 on these offenses, however, Jacobs alleged Amundsen fled Kentucky prior to his arrest on an indictment warrant.

Jacobs said he ended up in Alaska, then fled the United States.

Earlier in 2013, Jacobs said Amundsen was discovered living in South Korea.

Assisted by KSP Post 10, Jacobs said the U.S. Marshal’s Service transported Amundsen from South Korea to California.

The Knox County Sheriff’s Department then transported the suspect back to Knox County, according to Jacobs.