Sex offender: 'I feel like a monster'

Local man, 28, who engaged in sexual conduct with 15-year-old girl, gets four years in prison.
Cary Ashby
Apr 17, 2014


"There (are) not enough sorrys I can say to the victim's family, my family."

Convicted sex offender Lee A. Gustafson Jr. spoke quietly, often starting and stopping briefly between his short statements Wednesday in Huron County Common Pleas Court.

"I feel like a monster," he said.

Gustafson said he can't imagine what impact his actions made on the 15-year-old victim's life, her future, her family or the pain he has caused.

"There is really no excuse for what happened. I'm not here to make excuses," he said.

Judge Jim Conway sentenced Gustafson, 28, of 325 Lyme St., Bellevue, to four years in prison. That's one year short of the maximum for his conviction on unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. Defense attorney Jeremiah Ray earlier had recommended the judge consider sentencing his client to "the lower end" of the third-degree felony, which is punishable by one to five years in prison.

"He was the adult. He didn't use his head. He made a poor decision," Ray said.

In February, Gustafson pleaded guilty to unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. In exchange, prosecutors dismissed a more serious charge of rape. The Bellevue Police Department investigated the April 5 incident.

The victim's parents didn't speak in court Wednesday, but agreed to be interviewed after the sentencing hearing. They said their daughter will be undergoing counseling.

"She just doesn't want to talk about it (what happened). If it gets brought up, she gets upset," said her mother, who believes Gustafson's four-year sentence was appropriate.

The victim's father wanted the defendant get the full five years, but said four years is "better than it could be."

"There is no remorse for that (crime)," he said.

Conway ordered Gustafson to undergo sex offender treatment while he is in prison.

Once he's released, he will be on five years of parole. As a Tier II sex offender, Gustafson must register his address every six months for the next 25 years. He can apply for early release after being in prison for six months.

In mid-April 2005, Gustafson was sentenced to 90 days in the Huron County Jail for attempted burglary. As part of his four years of probation, he was ordered to perform 100 hours of community service and pay a $500 fine. Gustafson also was ordered to pay the victim $2,000 in restitution.

Before Wednesday's hearing, Gustafson's sister, Shantel Taylor, 18, of 521 W. Main St., Bellevue, was arrested on a Sandusky County Juvenile Court warrant. She was handcuffed and charged with a probation violation. Taylor watched the proceeding before being transported to jail and eventually released to the Sandusky County Sheriff's Office.

Gustafson's parents declined to comment Wednesday.


swiss family

maybe because you are !!!


Amen to that, but I take solace in knowing Mr Bubba will be making him see the evils of his disgusting ways.

Cliff Cannon

@ swiss family : So well put that one is left only to say what "rbenn " said
" Amen " ,


He will not be mistreated in Prison. He will go to a special prison in southwest Ohio, specifically for pedophiles and sex offenders who commit crimes qgainst children. He will be watched over with care and concern so he cannot be harmed by others. "They" are given special treatment. When he is released, if he gets a job that does not do background checks, he can work ANYWHERE, as long as he tells the parole department the truth. He can work on furnaces, home appliances, and any other place he wants. He can go to YOUR home, school and business and you will not know, he does not have to tell you. He can do anything because the system allows it. It happens all the time.


After he is released from jail, then yes, he should be able to work and have a life.


BeingMe - Question is not whether he will be kept safe from other inmates but whether this guy will be kept safe from the "killer pig virus" detailed in another story today.


he feels like a monster because that's what he is, grown people don't have sex with children.. perv


If these old guys would stick to girls who are over 18 years of age... they wouldn't keep getting in trouble or charged.

But these perverts won't, because the only head they think with is between their legs. Whether or not the teenybopper may or may not be a slut or not, it's still legally on the adult's.

What the hell is so hard to figure about that?


starryeyes88 - Age of consent in Ohio is 16 not 18.


Right, but even so, at least 18 would not get them in the paper at all, age 16 and 17 still does, sometimes.


starryeyes83 -
But if this guy had waited the 3 months until the girl was 16 - no crime - no news story - no nothing.


Perhaps, but more so if she was 18. Enough with the hair splitting there. She must of been really desperate to get with this dude or perhaps she's mentally disabled in some way. Wither way it's a moot point , now.


I DONT AGREE once you commit a crime against a child you should never have a life!!!! IM sick these perverts getting released to go do it again.


Sick...Way to degrade Ohio State by wearing that shirt. OSU fans are not pedefiles. You put the wrong one on, it's supposed to have a big 'M' on the front! Then I could understand.


No worse, than the blogger for the Sandusky Register, wearing a Superman T -shirt in his column by-line photo ; who is a convicted rapist.


that's not his mugshot. if the rock was bigger maybe it wouldn't be rape? one is left to ponder..


BeingMe. esorn. This site from the state of Ohio lists sex offenders in your area. This site is not to be used for harassment of sex offenders........cough.

swiss family

if you want to see something really disturbing... go to the esorn site.. or the Huron county sheriffs site and look at the sex offenders and where they are located, and map them out and take a drive when the kids are being let out of school some day.... watch how many of the sexual offenders are sitting on porches on the main routes coming home, some even have dogs and puppies on their porches to entice the children.. are you scared yet??? then look at the clothing that the parents bought for their kids.. a cute shirt that has their name on it, or a back pack with their name on it... if the sexual offender knows their name, trust me, he is smooth enough to convince them that he is supposed to take them home..I have discussed this with the Norwalk Superintendent.. he didn't want to scare the kids, and thought that maybe making a map in the teachers lounge would be a good idea????? I don't think it is the teachers that are being enticed???seems crazy to me.. everyone says we need to do something... but no one is willing to do anything until it is too late...


Swiss if you have time to go on a web site and look these people up, and do drive by's and note what they are doing....then you have issues. Maybe you should get a job.