Republic's Sawyer charged with unlawful use of weapon

Steve Chapman


A Republic man was charged with the unlawful use of a weapon after he allegedly used a firearm to threaten a woman. Michael Sawyer, 48, was booked into the Greene County Jail on Sunday, Aug. 13. Online court records show that he was released around Friday, Aug. 18, after posting a $10,000 corporate surety bond.
According to the probable cause statement in the case, officers with the Republic Police Department responded to a call about a domestic assault on Aug. 13. They met with a woman who said Sawyer came to the house at 7:30 that morning after being away for two days. She told the officers that she was asleep in bed when Sawyer came in and started yelling at her and hitting her (one of the officers noted that she had swelling around her jaw/mouth area and a cut on her lip that “appeared fresh”). The woman said that she didn’t know what Sawyer was angry about, but he hit her in the face several times and then left for a brief moment, and that “she knew he was going to get a gun.” She added that he had threatened her with his handgun multiple times.
The woman said that she hid in the bathroom connected to the bedroom, and then Sawyer returned with a handgun and was yelling for her. She said he came into the bathroom, and she then told him she’d called the police, and that he was being recorded. Sawyer, she said, told her she would “pay for the rest of her life” if she called the cops and would be “sorry” if she called 911. The woman held up her phone and said she was recording him, after which, she said, Sawyer grabbed another phone of hers and shattered it against the wall and then took off in his truck. At that point, she said, she called 911 and waited for officers to respond.
An officer reported that while they were speaking to the woman, she received a message from Sawyer that said, “I didn’t hit you, and you know it,” and that he also messaged her several times asking her “why she wouldn’t go into the house.”
One of the Republic officers began a canvass of the area with assistance from a Greene County deputy sheriff; they found Sawyer in a shop area southeast of the residence. After being read his Miranda rights, Sawyer told the officers that he had been at the house since the previous night and had woken up on a floor in a spare bedroom. Then, he said, he went to the bedroom where the woman was sleeping and got in bed with her, after which, he claimed, the woman got on top of him and started yelling and hitting him and threatened to stab him, after which he said he got up and left the house. He denied hitting the woman but did say “If I bumped her with my head … it was not intentional.” An officer asked him why he left if he knew the cops had been called; he said he went for a walk, and when he saw the cops on his property, he came back.
Officers found Sawyer’s gun in the workshop and took it as evidence. Sawyer claimed it had been in the workshop “for several days,” but then later said it had been there “since yesterday or the day before.”
According to the probable cause statement, it was the fifth domestic violence issue officers had responded to at the residence since 2021.
Sawyer is due back in court on Wednesday, Aug. 30, for multiple hearings on the case.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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