An alleged sexual assault victim of Marshfield’s Police Chief describes incidents dating back to 2015, spelled out in a four-page criminal complaint that’s now the basis for criminal charges.
47-year-old Rick Gramza is facing five charges in Wood County Circuit Court, after going on paid administrative leave almost three months ago. The charges are based on an outside investigation conducted by the Eau Claire Police Department, and reported by the Jackson County District Attorney’s office.
Gramza is charged in Wood County with three felony counts of misconduct in office for acting with excessive authority, one misdemeanor count of fourth-degree sexual assault and one misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct. He is due in court December 21. The criminal complaint says an employee of the Marshfield Police Department brought the allegations against Gramza, stating they date back to December of 2015.
The alleged victim told an investigator she had filed a sexual harassment claim against Gramza while he was still a lieutenant with the department, but that “it did not go well” with human resources, and the allegations never proceeded. The victim then described a number of incidents which she said took place in various locations within the police department, including the Chief’s office.
She also told the investigator she did not want these things to happen, but that she did not stop or report them over fears that she would get in trouble or lose her job. The alleged victim describes a number of incidents which she said happened as recently as June of this year. Once she heard rumors that the Chief had been sexually involved with others while on the job, she felt she needed to say something.
The investigator met with Chief Gramza in early September, and he acknowledged a sexual relationship with the employee, which he said began in 2012 or 2013 when he was the alleged victim’s supervisor. According to the investigator’s report, Gramza insisted the contact was consensual. If convicted on all five charges against him, Gramza faces more than 11 years in prison, fines of more than 40-thousand dollars or both.
The Sentinel & Rural News covers the news and events of Clark County and southern Taylor County, as well as regional news that affects those areas.