|Kyle B. Garstka|
By Tim Damos
The case of a former Sauk County jailer accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting two children is now slated for a trial by jury. Last week a judge scheduled the case of 32-year-old Kyle B. Garstka of Reedsburg for a trial that would begin Feb. 17 and last four days.
In April, Garstka was charged with two counts of repeated sexual assault of a child while off duty. Prosecutors allege heis guilty of repeated sexual acts, inappropriate touching and voyeurism against two children younger than 10.
His attorney has said the entire case rests on the “bare bones statements” of children, which lack corroborating evidence.
When he was employed as a jailer with the Sauk County Sheriff’s Department, Garstka faced allegations of domestic abuse on two separate occasions, but never was convicted.
In 2009, prosecutors agreed to dismiss a disorderly conduct charge involving domestic abuse in exchange for Garstka’s no contest plea and his fulfillment of certain terms, including counseling. Another incident in 2011 caused a separate woman to seek treatment at Hess Memorial Hospital in Mauston. The woman alleged Garstka beat her after an argument in a restaurant parking lot.
A nurse interviewed by detectives said the woman’s injuries were consistent with her story. However, a special prosecutor declined to press charges, citing “certain inconsistencies” and “the lack of witnesses.”
A former Sauk County jailer, Garstka was placed on administrative leave pending an internal investigation after the most recent charges were filed in April.
Sauk County Sheriff Chip Meister said Monday that Garstka is no longer an employee with the department.