WARSAW — Thomas Glen Hursey, Warsaw, who was initially charged with two counts of murder; robbery resulting in serious bodily injury; and aiding/inducing obstruction of justice in the Feb. 19, 2015, murders of Tara Thornburg and Josh Knisley, entered a plea agreement this morning, Wednesday, Dec. 14. The plea agreement was taken under advisement by Kosciusko Circuit Court Judge Michael Reed and set for further action at 9:45 a.m. Jan. 26.
Through the plea agreement, Hursey has pleaded guilty to two counts of aiding/inducing robbery causing serious bodily injury, both level 2 felonies. The two murder charges and the charge of aiding/inducing obstruction of justice will be dropped if the plea agreement is accepted. Additionally, charges of dealing in a narcotic drug, a level A felony; possession of a narcotic drug, a class B felony; strangulation, a class D felony; domestic battery, a class A misdemeanor; burglary, a class C felony; and theft, a class D felony would be dismissed.
The plea agreement also calls for Hursey’s sentences to be consecutive and his executives sentence, or time served, would not exceed 20 years.
A motion to file an amended charge, count 5, aiding/inducing robbery resulting in serious bodily injury was filed on Dec. 9, was accepted by the court during this morning’s hearing.
As in all other court hearings, Rhonda Bickel, mother of Josh Knisley, was present. Hursey was brought into the courtroom in handcuffs and wearing an orange jumpsuit from Whitley County Jail. He looked at Mrs. Bickel and said “I’m sorry,” appearing emotional himself. Following the hearing, Mrs. Bickel embraced Hursey for a few moments, sharing a few words with each other.
Hursey was a key witness for the prosecution of Kyle DeHart and Brandon Woody during their jury trial Oct. 3-6. The jury found DeHart and Woody guilty of their charges. DeHart was sentenced to 110 years, and Woody was sentenced to 120. Both are appealing their sentences.