Crime

Michigan Man Gets Maximum Sentence For Not Telling Sexual Partners He Has AIDS

| by Brendan Kelly

A 39-year-old Michigan man who gave a woman a deadly virus will serve the maximum time in prison possible under the law.

Tyrone Pugh was sentenced to 32 months to four years in prison for giving a Washtenaw County woman the HIV virus. He was charged with one count of sexual penetration with an uninformed partner while having AIDS. 

“It’s nothing short of reckless behavior,” Washtenaw County Judge Darlene O’Brien said. “It is a huge betrayal of her trust. You have to be honest with people.”

Four years is the maximum sentence for the felony and first-time offenders are usually given much lighter sentences, which was not the case for Pugh. Assistant Washtenaw County Prosecutor J. Samuel Holtz asked the judge to depart from sentencing guidelines for Pugh, reported MLive.

The 24-year-old victim from Washtenaw County, as well as two other victims, testified that Pugh didn’t inform them that he was HIV positive before having sex with them. Two of the three women are now HIV positive and will take medication for the rest of their lives in hopes that it won’t turn into AIDS.

One of the women says that she has been shunned by family and friends since she was diagnosed.

Pugh reportedly told authorities he was diagnosed with HIV when he was 24 years old. According to court proceedings, Pugh got married after his diagnosis and infected his wife with the virus. The wife discovered she had the disease after she got pregnant. 

Pugh had extramarital affairs through online dating websites for years, which is how he met all three women who testified against him.

“My sexual desires just overtake everything,” Pugh said in an interview with a detective, which was played in court.

All three women who testified said that Pugh never once hinted that he was HIV positive.

Pugh later met a woman from Redford, Michigan, on a dating site and started a sexual relationship with her. In January 2015, however, he was caught having sex in her car with his 24-year-old sexual partner from Washtenaw County. 

After Pugh was exposed for having affairs, his HIV diagnosis was exposed as well. Both of the women were then tested for the virus.

“I literally had a panic attack,” said the 24-year-old. “I wanted to walk into the middle of the highway and get hit.”

Pugh met the 24-year-old when she was 19 through an online site. They started a sexual relationship, which ultimately resulted in two children. Pugh said he wasn’t sure if the children were his.

As of now, the two children are HIV negative.

Pugh also faces similar charges in Wayne County for infecting the Redford woman as well. He turned himself in to Redford police earlier this year. In February, he pleaded guilty to the Washtenaw County charge, according to Detroit Free Press.

Sources: MLive, Detroit Free Press / Photo credit: MLive