Who is Ryan Sawyer Mays? Young Sailor accused of Setting Fire to a US Navy Warship

Ryan Sawyer Mays

Who is Ryan Sawyer Mays?

Ryan Sawyer Mays is a 21-year-old young sailor who is accused of setting fire to a warship.

Ryan Sawyer Mays

Ryan is accused of setting fire to a US Navy Warship because he was angry about being assigned to deck duty after failing to become a Navy SEAL, according to prosecutors.

As it stands now, Ryan is accused of aggravated arson and the wilful hazarding of vessel charges.

However, he has denied these accusations.

Prosecutor Commander Leah O’Brien called Mays conceited on the opening day of the court martial at Naval Base San Diego, adding that the fire was “a malicious act of rebellion gone wrong.”

The USS Bonhomme Richard burned for nearly five days in July 2020, sending smoke over San Diego, where the ship had been for a major upgrade.

Some 115 sailors were on board and nearly 60 suffered heat exhaustion, smoke inhalation and minor injuries.

US Navy Warship

The ship was so badly damaged that it had to be scuttled.

But Mays’ military defense counsel Lieutenant Tayler Haggerty said prosecutors had presented no physical evidence proving he was behind the fire.

She said investigators had ignored evidence and witness accounts, so they could find a scapegoat for the loss of a costly ship that had been badly managed by senior officers.

The trial, which is expected to last two weeks and is before Navy judge Captain Derek Butler, has been hampered by the inability of many witnesses to remember what happened on the day of the fire.