LOGAN — For the second time, a jury has found Brian Williams guilty of sexually abusing three young girls more than 11 years ago. The 41-year-old Logan man showed little emotion and did not speak, as deputies took him again into custody and escorted him out of the courtroom.
The jury deliberated for more than three hours in 1st District Court Thursday afternoon, before reaching their decision. They pronounced Williams guilty on six counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child, a first-degree felony; and six counts of forcible sexual abuse, a second-degree felony.
Outside the courtroom, Cache County Chief Prosecutor Spencer Walsh praised the jury of six men and two women. He said the four day trial had included emotional and difficult evidence to hear.
“They got it right,” Walsh said. “They saw through the defendant’s deception. They saw the evidence for what it was. And it was clear that the defendant was a sexual predator, who betrayed his position of special trust and harmed three children.”
Throughout the trial, the three girls testified how Williams would shower with them. Later he would do “body checks” and “tick checks” as they started to hit puberty. He encouraged the girls to skinny dip in a hot tub together. He also molested them multiple times while watching TV. The abuse occurred over several years and didn’t end until the girls reported the crimes to their mother.
In 2015, Williams was found guilty the first time on all charges, and later sentenced to serve 15-years to life in prison. That conviction was later overturned by the Utah Court of Appeals, who ruled that prosecutors improperly questioned jurors during the jury selection process and could be interpreted as an attempt to strengthen the victims’ testimony.
Walsh said going through the trial again was a frustrating experience, especially for the victims, who all had to testify for a second time.
“We felt like there really was no error at that last trial, but life is not fair sometimes, and unfortunately these young ladies had to go through a second trail, and they were amazing. They’re incredible young women and they deserve to have peace and happiness, and move forward with their lives now. I hope that they can find that peace, and have a happy life.”
Williams will now remain in jail until he is sentenced June 17. He originally served almost three years after his first conviction, before being released by the appellate court.
Walsh said it is believed that the court can’t sentence Williams for more time than originally ordered after the first trial.
“So, we anticipate that we will argue for justice for each individual survivor, for all three of those survivors, and ask for a 15-to-life sentence again.”
During the trial, defense attorneys said the victim’s allegations were made up. They claimed that Williams was falsely charged by prosecutors, after detectives failed to investigate the case thoroughly.
Following the jury’s verdict, Walsh said it’s easy to look back at an investigation and ask, what could have been done better? He felt like investigators did a lot of things right in the case, especially dealing with young girls, who struggled at first to talk about what happened, because of Williams’ position of trust over them.