Former Sparta councilman indicted on federal child exploitation charges
OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. – A former member of the Sparta Village Council has been indicted on federal charges of child exploitation and enticement.
Ryan Hayes was indicted of two counts of Sexual Exploitation of Children and Coercion or Enticement of Female for allegedly initiating a text conversation with someone he thought was a 14-year-old girl named “Liv” in September. The person was actually a Kent County Sheriff investigator.
In court documents, Hayes admitted to chatting about “sexual topics”, and allegedly was planning to meet up with the girl at Huff Park. He was arrested at the meeting location.
Hayes resigned from the council at the end of October, but was re-elected in November. He said at the time he would not take the oath of office to return to his seat. The president of the Sparta Village council says that if Hayes doesn’t take the oath of office by December 24, they can declare the position vacant and appoint another person to the position.
In the federal indictment, Hayes allegedly also used a 16-year-old girl to engage in sexually explicit conduct that he took photographs of with his cell phone.
Hayes faces a minimum of ten years in prison with a possibility of life in prison sentence if convicted.