WALWORTH COUNTY, Wis. — The Walworth County Sheriff's Office confirmed Friday that a deputy has been placed on administrative leave after he was charged with 19 counts including sexual assault. He has since resigned.
The sheriff's office said in a statement that former Deputy Gerardo Baca, 36, was arrested on March 3 and is facing numerous charges in Waukesha County, including multiple counts of second and third-degree sexual assault. The sheriff's office said the charges stem from incidents that happened when he was off duty over a year ago.
Baca was taken into custody Thursday and is being held on a $500,000 cash bond. He resigned from his position on Friday, according to the Associate Press.
According to the criminal complaint, Baca sexually assaulted six different women between 2011 and 2021. Some of the victims he met at work and one was an intern.
According to the complaint, she told detectives after drinking at Baca's home, he "slammed her onto his bed...pulled her pants off of her while she was telling him...told him to stop several times...and thought to herself 'I better not get killed.'"
"He essentially assaulted the victims as they were incapacitated by alcohol and unable to defend themselves," Waukesha County District Attorney Sue Opper said.
The complaint says another victim was only 17-year-old. She told investigators she "woke up and realized that her pants and underwear were around her ankles and that the defendant was having sex with her."
Many of the alleged assaults happened at Baca's home in Delevan, the complaint states. One victim claims he has "cameras all over his house." Detectives also found recordings of several of the alleged assaults.
Another victim told investigators that Baca told her if she "ever made a statement that it was not consensual, he would consider that a threat" and would have her boyfriend investigated for domestic violence, as well as ruin her reputation at work, according to the complaint.
Baca's defense attorney is arguing some of the assaults were consensual.
"We have significant amounts of evidence that contradict the claim that they were non-consensual sexual activity with at least two of these named victims," defense attorney Nathan Otis said.
The Walworth County Sheriff's Office confirmed it received information last month about Baca's potential off-duty misconduct and immediately placed him on administrative leave.
Since Baca was charged, Walworth County has begun a full internal investigation, which is being led by Waukesha County Sheriff's Department.
"I am working with the Walworth County Human Resources Director and legal counsel regarding Baca’s employment status," Walworth County Sheriff Kurt Picknell said in the statement.
Now, Waukesha County is asking to speak with anyone who could be a victim. They are asking anyone who has been involved with Baca to call Waukesha County Sheriff Detective Aaron Hoppe at 262-896-8143 or Waukesha County Sheriff Detective Jack Kopatich at 262-896-8140.
"The Walworth County Sheriff's Office is a very good agency with great people. I take this matter seriously and we continue to serve the mission of public safety," Picknell said.
Baca was hired on Jan. 30, 2017, according to the sheriff's office.
A TMJ4 records request shows Baca has had previous employments with Delavan Police Department, Darien Police Department and Delavan Town Police Department.
According to online court records, Baca is facing the following charges:
- 3 counts of third-degree sexual assault
- 6 counts of 2nd Degree Sex Assault-Intoxicated Victim
- 2 counts of Threats to Communicate Derogatory Info
- 2nd Degree Sexual Assault/Use of Force
- Attempt 3rd Degree Sexual Assault
- Child Enticement-Expose Sex Organ
- 3 counts of Capture an Intimate Representation
- Capture an Image of Nudity