Mon, Jan 14, 2013
Convicted of 16 felony counts of sexual contact with two adolescent boys, a Dunn County judge sentenced the former police chief of Wheeler to 14 years in prison, followed by 16 years of probation.
Before he was sentenced on Wednesday, Gary L. Wayerski, 57, repeatedly told Judge Bill Stewart, “I want the truth to come out. … I did not do what the jury believes I have done. I’m no monster.”
Apologizing to Dunn County and other law enforcement officers, Wayerski said, “I didn’t want to tarnish your badges or have people say anything against you.”
On Oct. 12, a jury found Wayerski guilty of two counts each of child enticement, exposing his genitals, exposing a child to harmful materials, and causing a child 13 to 18 to view sexual activity as well as eight counts of sexual assault of a child by a person who works or volunteers with children.
Claiming that as Wheeler’s part-time police chief he was trying to rid the village of drugs, Wayerski told the judge there were two people with influence over the boys, 16 and 17 years old at the time, who were “trying to take me down.”
In March 2011, Wayerski arrested the teens for breaking into a local church. Offering to mentor the boys, he met with them numerous times at his apartment in Menomonie between March and the time of his arrest in July 2011.
The boys testified that on multiple occasions he gave them alcohol and showed them pornography. In addition to fondling them, he spanked them during sports workouts and had oral sex with one of them. The teens claimed he threatened them with juvenile detention if they divulged what was going on.
Denying their allegations and emphatically maintaining his innocence, Wayerski admitted to Judge Stewart, “I am not without blame. I have made a great mistake of violating the law enforcement code of ethics and professionalism with having the teenagers over at my home. … I was stupid in not seeing I crossed the line.”
According to Stewart, “It makes it worse, especially when the authority comes from the badge of a sworn law enforcement officer. … You didn’t just cross the line. You jumped over it.”
The judge called Wayerski’s “grooming” of the boys a seriously aggravating factor in the case, especially considering the fact that both sets of parents trusted and gave the police chief permission mentor their sons.
“They trusted a law enforcement officer to do right by their sons — who they obviously knew were not cherubs … as someone with the authority to assist them to straighten the boys out,” Stewart told Wayerski.
During his plea for clemency, Wayerski pointed out to the judge that he didn’t murder anybody, but Stewart assured Wayerski that the effect of the crimes he perpetrated on the teens is permanent and more insidious.
“This is someone who calculated, planned and executed a plan against two young men,” the judge said. “You implemented your plan; you violated these two young men. … I can tell you they are damaged.”
Following his arrest, Wayerski told authorities he was addicted to pornography. The judge pointed out that the porn — featuring young men — found among the thousands of images on Wayerski’s computer was very telling. “It depicts the same type of conducted you were convicted of at trial.”
In addition to prison and probation, Wayerski must undergo sex offender assessment and register as a sex offender. He can have no contact with the victims or their families or any minors under the age of 18 unless approved by his probation agent.
He will receive credit for the 531 days of jail time he has served in the Chippewa and Dunn County jails.