Judge Vern Perez suspended 30 of the 48-month prison sentence, leaving the former UOG professor with just 18 months to serve in prison.
Guam – Michael Ehlert, the former University of Guam professor found guilty of sexually assaulting three university students was sentenced today in Superior Court.
Judge Vern Perez handed down a sentence of 18 months out of the possibility of 8 years.
After the victim’s impact statement was read in court, Prosecutor Matt Heibel sought a sentence of 7 years in prison. Ehlert was facing up to 8 years in prison for criminal sexual conduct and an additional 8 years each for attempted criminal sexual conduct.
But his attorney, Jay Arriola, argued that the mandatory minimum of one year in prison for each count is an injustice to his client who he says is not a danger to the community. Arriola asked for a suspension of any sentence on Ehlert.
Finally, since he was charged, Ehlert broke his silence but continued to maintain his innocence.
“Since the very beginning of the women’s claims, I have worked within the system to clear my name of these allegations. And I say allegations decidedly because we still don’t know what happened that night. The women’s stories on the stand contradict each other. Nevertheless, I accept that the jury drew a conclusion and found me guilty on two counts of six charges. I accept. However, I continue to vigorously deny any wrongdoing and never have sexual contact with any of the students as alleged,” shared an emotional Ehlert.
During the sentencing, Judge Perez acknowledged the character statements, but he noted that based on the verdict, Ehlert clearly acted in a way that will affect the victims for a lifetime.
Judge Perez sentenced Ehlert to two years each for criminal sexual conduct and attempted CSC for a combined sentence of 4 years. However, the judge also demonstrated some leniency, acknowledging Ehlert’s service to the community, so he suspended 30 of the 48 months, leaving Ehlert to serve just 18 months.
The former professor will have to register as a level 1 sex offender and will serve 3 years probation upon release.
He was allowed to remain on house arrest pending appeal.