Crime

Seven Ellis County Volunteer Firefighters Indicted in Chorizo Sex Assault Case

An Ellis County grand jury has indicted eight people, including seven volunteer firefighters, on charges arising from the sexual assault of a trainee firefighter, who in March reported that he'd been anally penetrated with a link of chorizo as part of an initiation ritual in January.

Ellis County called in the Texas Rangers after the firefighter trainee first reported the assault on March 31. The trainee said Keith Wisakowsky, 27; Casey Stafford, 30; Alec Miller, 28; Blake Tucker, 19; and Preston Peyrot, 19, first attempted to sodomize him with a broom handle before settling on using a link of chorizo that was sitting in the fridge. According to the Rangers report, Tucker and Stafford held the trainee down while Wisakowsky inserted the still-wrapped sausage into the trainee. Wisakowsky then cut the sausage out of the package, but it broke up when he tried to assault the trainee with it again.

The trainee was then let go, he told the Rangers, and he crawled to bathroom, threw up and showered. While the trainee was cleaning up, someone took his clothes from the restroom. When the trainee came out of the restroom wearing a towel, Tucker took it, the trainee says, and he was forced to scramble to his truck naked to get some shorts.

At the time, the Rangers reported that Brittany Parten, Wisakowsky's girlfriend, filmed the incident on her cell phone.

Tuesday, the five firefighters initially alleged to have participated in the assault and Parten were indicted for aggravated sexual assault. All six, save Peyrot, have also been indicted for attempted sexual assault for the broom handle attack.

The chief and assistant chief of the Ellis County Emergency Service District 6 Volunteer Fire Department were also indicted on charges of witness tampering.

After finding out about the incident, 34-year-old Assistant Chief Billy Getzendaner allegedly said "this is some funny shit." He and Chief Gavin Satterfield, 31, allegedly met with the five firefighters and the trainee in an effort to stop the incident from becoming public.

Satterfield and Getzendaner "threatened to expose [the trainee] to hatred, contempt or ridicule" if he were to come forward, according to their indictments.

The two chiefs have been suspended by the board that oversees Ellis County Emergency Service District 6.
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Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014. He's a Dallas native and a graduate of the University of North Texas.
Contact: Stephen Young