Cheyenne Man Gets 15 to 20 Years in 2020 Child Sex Abuse Case
After more than two years of legal proceedings, a 2020 child sex abuse case that former Laramie County District Attorney Leigh Anne Grant Manlove declined to prosecute is finally closed.
Peter Summerhawk, 48, of Cheyenne, was sentenced Wednesday in Laramie County District Court to 15 to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to two first-degree counts and one third-degree count of sexual abuse of a child, police said Friday.
Police say they began investigating Summerhawk in August 2020 after receiving a report that he'd been sexually abusing a juvenile female for several months.
"Following a thorough investigation, Cheyenne Police Detectives sent a detailed five-page affidavit of probable cause to the Laramie County District Attorney’s office on October 29, 2020," police said.
"A 32-page investigative report was also completed and submitted on November 2, 2020," police added.
But police say no action was taken until June 2021, when Manlove sent a “declination of case” letter to detectives indicating that the case couldn't be prosecuted because additional information was needed.
"In response, on August 10, 2021, former City Attorney Mike O’Donnell, on behalf of the Cheyenne Police Department, filed a petition requesting that the investigation be reassigned to the Wyoming Attorney General’s office," police said.
"Approximately one month after O’Donnell’s petition, his successor, City Attorney Stefanie Boster, filed an amended petition providing additional information," police added.
In November 2021, a judge granted the city’s request to have the AG’s office review and prosecute the case, which resulted in Summerhawk’s guilty plea.
“On behalf of the Cheyenne Police Department, I want to commend the Wyoming Attorney General’s office for their tireless work on this case, as well as our detective bureau for their commitment to building a solid case,” said Chief Mark Francisco.
“Strong partnerships resulted in a conviction despite roadblocks along the way," Francisco added.