Man gets 10 months in sex sting plea

A Sandown man was sentenced to 10 months in the Hillsborough County Department of Corrections after pleading guilty to one felony count of “certain uses of computer services prohibited” that stemmed from his arrest in Hudson in 2007, according to a written statement from the county attorney’s office.

Thomas Arnold, 51, was sentenced in Hillsborough County Superior Court by Judge William Groff on Thursday. He was arrested after he traveled to Hudson to meet with someone he thought was a 14-year-old boy struggling with his sexuality, the statement said. Arnold was actually communicating with Hudson Sgt. Charles Dyac, who was posing as the boy as part of an undercover operation.

Authorities said Arnold initially suggested to Dyac that he could help counsel him, but the conversation took a sexual turn “at the urging of Mr. Arnold,” the statement said. Arnold also sent pornographic images to Dyac over the computer.

Arnold came to Hudson on Sept. 1, 2007, with the intention of meeting the boy but was met instead by Hudson police officers and members of the Southern Hillsborough County Cyber Safe Taskforce, the statement said.

Besides serving the 10 months, Arnold was also sentenced to two years probation after release and ordered to register as a sex offender, provide a DNA sample for the state database, have no contact with children younger than 18, seek psychological treatment, and limit computer use.