‘Sons of Guns’ reality TV star convicted of rape charges

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Former “Sons of Guns” reality TV star Will Hayden was convicted Friday of raping two girls in Louisiana. He faces a sentence of life in prison.

The Advocate reports (http://bit.ly/2oNLZdi) that Hayden’s victims, a 15-year-old girl and a 37-year-old woman, cried and hugged in a Baton Rouge courtroom as the jury’s unanimous verdicts were announced.

Hayden was found guilty of two counts of aggravated rape and one count of forcible rape.

The Discovery Channel canceled the “Sons of Guns” series amid Hayden’s legal troubles.

His 15-year-old victim told jurors that Hayden repeatedly raped her over the course of a year-and-a-half, when she was 11 and 12 years old. The 37-year-old woman testified that Hayden raped her in the early 1990s, when she was 12 and 13.

Hayden, 51, denied the rape allegations when he testified Thursday at his trial.

A prosecutor, Sonya Cardia-Porter, called Hayden a “master manipulator” who lied to the jury in a “pretty-well-rehearsed” performance.

Hayden is scheduled to be sentenced in May, but his aggravated rape conviction carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison.

He also faces separate rape charges in Livingston Parish and has a trial scheduled for July.

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