Former reality star Will Hayden, who starred in Sons of Guns on the Discovery Channel, was unanimously convicted by a jury for raping two preteen girls more than two decades apart, according to The Advocate.
The victims, a 15-year-old girl and 37-year-old woman, cried and hugged inside state District Judge Mike Erwin’s courtroom as the verdicts were read in East Baton Rouge Parish in Lousiana on Friday, according to The Advocate. Guilty on two counts of aggravated rape and one count of forcible rape, Hayden, 51, will be sentenced on May 11, and aggravated rape carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison.
Hayden was arrested in August 2014 on aggravated rape charges involving a child, the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office said. He already faced child molestation and aggravated crime against nature charges stemming from an earlier arrest in 2014.
According to 90 WAFB, one of the victims left the courthouse with her family members. While they were not willing to speak with the media, District Attorney Hillar Moore III said her testimony was at some points nearly unbearable.
Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
“This was a young child that was raped at a very young age and she chose to testify in front of the jury, in front of her abuser, and she actually threw up five times while testifying,” he said.
Sons of Guns began airing in 2011 and followed Hayden’s family-owned custom firearms business in Louisiana. Episodes often showed Hayden and his adult daughter, Stephanie, helping customers find weapons, including rifles. Other scenes showed the process of making the guns, images from firing ranges and ammunition tips. The show was cancelled in 2014 after Hayden’s arrest.