Member of Port Gamble S’klallam Tribe Sentenced to 8 Years in Prison for Sexual Molestation of Young Child
A 28-year-old enrolled member of the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to eight years in prison and twenty years of supervised release for molesting a young child, announced U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes. GARY CLYDE WELLMAN, JR., of Kingston, Washington pleaded guilty to abusive sexual contact in May 2017. U.S. District Judge Robert J. Bryan ordered WELLMAN JR. to register as a sex offender upon his release from prison.
According to records filed in the case, both the victim and WELLMAN JR. are members of the Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribe. WELLMAN JR. was a close friend of the victim’s parents and was viewed by the family as an uncle to their children. In October 2016, the victim disclosed to a trusted relative that WELLMAN JR. had molested the child while he was a guest in the family’s home. The abuse began when the child was as young as 6 or 7, and some sexual abuse occurred on Port Gamble S’Klallam Tribal Trust land.
WELLMAN JR. has been in custody since his arrest in October 2016. He was charged in Kitsap County Superior Court in connection with the molestation that occurred off Tribal lands. Those charges were resolved with the federal charges for which he was sentenced today.
The case was investigated by the FBI and the Port Gamble S'Klallam Department of Public Safety. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Rebecca Cohen. Ms. Cohen serves as a Tribal Liaison for the United States Attorney’s Office.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Western District of Washington