Appeal of child sex convictions rejected

May 2—THOMASVILLE — A Thomasville man convicted of multiple child sex offenses involving young boys is not entitled to a new trial, the N.C. Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.

Anthony Wayne Sando, 60, was convicted in November 2021 of two counts of statutory rape, three counts of first-degree sexual offense with a child and six counts of indecent liberties with a child and was sentenced to a minimum of 49 years in prison, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

He was accused of molesting one boy for about two years and molesting that boy's brother for more than four years until, in early 2013, the boys told their mother about it, according to the Court of Appeals' summary of the case.

Sando's attorney argued on appeal that the trial judge improperly prevented another boy who was not related to the brothers to testify that Sando had never tried to molest him. The Court of Appeals agreed with the trial judge.

"The witness's relationship with Defendant had no bearing on Defendant's alleged misconduct," the court wrote. "Furthermore, the witness's lack of sexual abuse at the hands of Defendant did not preclude Defendant from sexually abusing" anyone else.

Sando's attorney also argued that the trial judge should have allowed evidence showing that one of the brothers previously had been sexually abused by someone else, but the appellate court disagreed.

"This Court has held that prior sexual abuse ... is not relevant evidence," the court wrote.