UPDATE: Former Langlade Co. deputy sheriff resigned during investigation
LANGLADE COUNTY (WAOW) -
We have new information about the investigation into a former Langlade County Sheriff's deputy who is accused of sexual assault.
Authorities said Michael Brayton resigned a week after he was placed on administrative leave.After we first reported this story, some told us they questioned their trust in law enforcement. Langlade County Sheriff William Greening said this was an isolated incident.
Former Langlade County Deputy Sheriff Brayton has been charged with 22 felonies, including sexual assault, child enticement and exposing himself to four Langlade County girls -- between the ages of 15 and 18. Authorities said the investigation started with an anonymous tip to the sheriff's department in May.
"We took the allegations very seriously because they are serious allegations," said Greening. "We investigated thoroughly and took action quickly. We placed Deputy Brayton on administrative leave on that following Monday, which I believe was June 4th, basically removing him from service as a law enforcement officer."
According to court documents, Brayton told investigators -- "I don't want to see the department's name get dragged down for something they had no part of." So one week after being place on leave, he resigned.
"The former deputy ended up admitting that a lot of the allegations were presented and he also indicated that none of that occurred while he was on duty," said Greening.
In the criminal complaint, Brayton told authorities he met the girls within the last year, some at the places they worked and some through other girls he knew. Authorities said he texted -- and sent graphic pictures -- to the four girls. And met up with two of them at his home -- where the alleged sexual contact happened. Brayton is only charged with sexually assaulting one girl. According to court documents, Brayton admitted to the crimes, telling investigators
-- "It's my fault. Whatever happens, it's on me." He also told authorities the sexual contact did not involve force or alcohol.
"There was no indication in any of his background that there was any issues that would have led to this type of behavior," said Greening. "I had no prior discipline or complaints regarding him."
Greening said he believes this was an isolated incident and holds his deputies to a high standard.
"Law enforcement officers are in a position of trust in the public and the public has to trust in law enforcement officers," said Greening. "We require and mandate that our people are above reproach and that they conduct themselves both on duty and off duty in a professional manner.
For now, Brayton is in jail and does not yet have an attorney. Lawyers and a judge from outside Langlade County will be stepping in to work on this case.