Tom Wopat, best known for his role on the TV series The Dukes of Hazzard, has pleaded guilty to inappropriately touching two fellow female cast members of a theater musical he was set to star in last year. Wopat entered a guilty plea recently on two counts of "annoying and accosting a person of the opposite sex." Wopat is avoiding jail time for now but has been sentenced to a year of probation and is under the condition that he isn't allowed any contact with his accusers.
The allegations came last fall when Tom Wopat was preparing to star in a musical in Waltham, Massachusetts. He was arrested in August 2017 while leaving Waltham High School where he had been rehearsing for the production of 42nd Street, which was set to open the following evening. Following the incident, the theater dropped Wopat from the role and he was replaced with a different actor. Wopat initially plead not guilty during his arraignment, which was held the day after his arrest. Police initially arrested him after receiving complaints that Wopat, who is 66-years-old, had inappropriately touched fellow female cast members. The Middlesex County district attorney's office did not name his accusers.
During his arrest, officers allegedly found a small bag of cocaine on Tom Wopat's person. During court proceedings, the actor admitted that prosecutors had enough evidence to convict him of the charge of possession of cocaine, which is listed as a Class B substance. The court opted to withhold finding him guilty on possession charges and postponed the case for one year, on the condition that Wopat adheres to his court-ordered probation. Wopat was also placed on pre-trial probation for a year in connection with two charges of indecent assault and battery.
One of the girls who accused Tom Wopat of touching her was just 16-years-old at the time of the incident. The actor released a statement via his spokesperson, Dan Fortune, via USA Today last year, denying the charges, He also vowed to address his substance abuse.
"[Mr. Wopat] firmly denies any wrongdoing, and after a thorough investigation by his defense team and a full airing of the facts, Tom has faith that the truth will be revealed and his good name will be restored. Mr. Wopat urges everyone to keep in mind that these are allegations; he's alleged to have improperly touched an adult female performer during rehearsal in the presence of the entire cast and directing staff."
Tom Wopat rose to fame as Luke Duke in the Dukes of Hazzard in the 1980s. He later went on to star in shows like Cybill and, more recently, on the western Longmire. Wopat could still face additional sentencing in the case a year from new regarding the possession charges. For now, he won't be serving any time in jail. This news comes to us courtesy of USA Today.