GUILTY

A jury last week found Hale resident Brian Scott Thayer, 39, guilty on four of six charges stemming from a rape case after a trial held in Iosco County’s 23rd Circuit Court. Thayer is scheduled to be sentenced May 3 and could face life in prison.

TAWAS CITY – A Hale man was found guilty on four of six counts following a jury trial last week in Iosco County’s 23rd Circuit Court.

Hale resident Brian Scott Thayer, 39, was one of five involved in a case where five men, ranging in age from 21 to 60 years old, allegedly gang raped a 17-year-old woman over the period of several hours last year.

All involved in the case have taken plea deals, save Thayer, who opted for a jury trial. The jury found him guilty on two counts of 1st-degree criminal sexual conduct (CSC), a count of furnishing a cereal beverage to a minor, Captain Morgan rum, and a count of child sexually abusive activity. 

Thayer was found not guilty by the jury on one count of 1st-degree CSC and was found not guilty on a count of using computers to commit a crime. He is scheduled for sentencing on May 3 at 9 a.m., and could face life imprisonment under the sentencing guidelines.

Last month another in the case, Timothy Joseph Monschau, 60, Turner was sentenced to time served for 213 days in the Iosco County jail after pleading no contest to 4th-degree criminal sexual conduct. A charge of 1st-degree (CSC) was dismissed.

Others involved in the case is Gary Eugene Harrington, 21, Tawas City who is expected to be sentenced under a plea agreement. His original charges included four counts of 1st-degree CSC and a charge of committing a gross indecency between a male and female.

Another is Samuel Henry Walmsley, 60, Oscoda, who is expected to be sentenced under a plea agreement. His original charges included 1st-degree CSC, a charge of child sexually abusive activity, using a computer to commit a crime and a charge of committing a gross indecency between a male and female.

Finally, Michael Scott Barnes, 53, Whittemore, is expected to be sentenced under a plea agreement. He originally faced three 1st-degree CSC, a charge of child sexually abusive activity, using a computer to commit a crime and a charge of committing a gross indecency between a male and female.

According to the Michigan State Police, said the incident occurred at Barnes’ Whittemore home on April 4, 2018. 

According to a report, the victim was allegedly plied with Captain Morgan rum and was blacked out at the time of the incidents, which were recorded on a cell phone camera. She told troopers that she could not recall any of the details that occurred that day, but was shown pictures from Walmsley’s cell phone.

The phone was seized for evidence in the investigation, and Walmsley alleged admitted to troopers he used the phone to record the incident. 

Troopers say the video showed Thayer, and allegedly Walmsley and Barnes allegedly committing sex acts on the victim. Thayer could be heard in the video encouraging the others to perform the sex acts on the victim.

According to troopers there were allegedly 126 photos taken of the victim spanning nearly two hours and that pictures also showed Harrington committing sexual acts on the victim.

Police say the same day Walmsley sent four text messages, with photos of the alleged victim, to Barnes’ cell phone. 

During an interview by police, Walmsley alleged admitted to the acts, he told police that Thayer brought the alcohol to Barnes’ home and the sex acts all took place in the same room with all the men. Police say cell phone images and recordings allegedly confirm this. 

Barnes in an interview allegedly admitted to the acts and admitted that he allegedly took photos with his cell phone. Monschau, who participated in the acts, as well as Walmsley, Barnes and Thayer, can all allegedly be heard encouraging each other throughout the videos, troopers say.