GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A former gymnastics coach accused of sexually assaulting children in Kent County has been ordered to stand trial on another batch of charges against him.
In total, Shannon Guay faces 21 criminal counts involving 10 victims: 11 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct, nine counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct and one count of kidnapping.
The cases are split between two courts. At the end of a preliminary hearing Thursday, a judge ruled his Kent County cases would go to trial. He was already bound over on cases out of Grand Rapids.
During the Thursday hearing, one witness testified that Guay was one of her gymnastics coaches and touched her inappropriately at the gym when she was about 10 years old.
“He told me that it was OK because he loved me and got upset because I would not tell him that I loved him back,” she said.
Guay was also accused of sexual abuse outside of his former role as a gymnastics coach.
Several sisters testified and said they had been sexually abused multiple times as children by Guay, whom they knew through a family member. They said Guay would put his hand down their pants while they were lying on the couch.
“I was very, very uncomfortable,” one sister, who said she was around 10 when one of the incidents occurred, told the court. “I didn’t really know what to do. … He asked me if it felt good.”
She said she did not tell anyone until she was around 16 in therapy. “I didn’t understand what happened, honestly, until I was a teenager.”
Once, she said, Guay was tickling her and she asked him to get off.
“And he raised his voice, and he said, ‘You don’t tell me to stop,'” the woman recalled.
Another sister, who said she would have been between 8 and 10 when Guay assaulted her, said Guay’s actions made her feel “pretty confused.” “I didn’t really have an idea of what sexual contact was. I wasn’t really aware of my own body in that way yet.”
Guay would have inappropriate sexual contact with her “every time (she) stayed the night” in proximity with him, she said.