A Green River City councilman charged with multiple felony counts of sexual abuse of a minor withdrew a motion for change of venue shortly before a hearing about the issue Monday.
Allan Dean Wilson had previously filed the motion for change of venue, claiming he could not get a fair trial due to his high profile in the community and the substantial media coverage of the case.
Wilson, 56, is charged with first-degree sexual abuse of a minor, second-degree sexual abuse of a minor and third-degree sexual abuse of a minor, all alleged to have taken place in Lincoln County. Another count of second-degree sexual abuse of a minor is alleged to have happened in Sweetwater County. The cases were combined into one Sweetwater County case because both cases involved the same alleged victim.
Sweetwater County Third District Court Judge Nena James expressed her belief that Wilson could still be given a fair trial in Sweetwater County despite excessive media coverage. She noted they have fairly tried other well-known community figures who attracted considerable media coverage.
James noted she was only willing to consider a change of venue because the prosecution was also in favor of the idea, but issues arose when the defense attempted to choose the counties in which they preferred to proceed.
The defense requested that deadlines for filing, jury selection and trial date be delayed because they had anticipated the change of venue. The trial was previously expected to begin on Jan. 7, 2019.
According to the redacted affidavit filed in the Rock Springs Circuit Court, Sweetwater County Detective Michelle Hall interviewed a child after his parents reported “concerning photos” on his Snapchat account. When the parents questioned the boy, he revealed the alleged abuse.
The boy alleged Wilson inappropriately touched him in 2011 while staying in a camper at a cabin property located near Commissary Ridge close to Kemmerer. He also accused Wilson of inappropriately touching him in 2013 while driving through Green River, according to court documents.
Wilson has lived in Green River for 39 years, retiring in 2014 as the director of the Green River Parks and Recreation Department. He was elected to the Green River City Council in November 2014. If Wilson is convicted of all four counts, he could face up to 105 years in prison and a $40,000 fine.