RACINE — Statements a former Waterford man made to detectives 17 hours after undergoing a voice stress test amid a rape investigation may be used against him at trial, a judge ruled Thursday.
Cousins Travis S. Rezutek, 26, and Jeffrey G. Wilson, 28, are accused of working together so Rezutek could sexually assault a women. The men, both formerly from Waterford, are charged with being a party to the crime of second-degree sexual assault after a woman told investigators she was raped by Rezutek while Wilson held onto her, preventing her from getting up, according to their criminal complaints.
The cousins’ defense attorneys have sought to bar their statements to Racine County sheriff’s investigators from being used in their trial — including statements Wilson reportedly made the day after he underwent a voice stress analysis.
Wilson’s defense attorney, Christy M. Hall, argued Thursday that he didn’t know on June 22, 2012, that the voice stress test he took the day before was completed when he made statements to investigators about the alleged sexual assault. She said the question goes to whether the test actually was finished, and whether Wilson knew the voice stress test had been completed when he spoke with investigators.
“No one ever told my client that the test was over,” Hall said during Thursday’s hearing.
Racine County Sheriff’s Investigator Thomas Knaus testified Thursday that Wilson signed a consent form to undergo the test. He said Racine County Sheriff Chris Schmaling administered the voice stress test, and then packed up the equipment and left.
Voice stress analysis is designed to measure changes in a person’s voice patterns that can be caused by stress, or the effort to try to hide deceptive answers to questions, according to the National Institute of Justice. But these test results, like those of lie detector tests, cannot be used in court. However, statements made to police outside of the voice stress test could be used in court.
Assistant District Attorney Randy Schneider argued that Wilson’s statement was admissible.
“Was the defendant told the test was over? Clearly he was,” Schneider said, noting 17 hours lapsed between the test and Wilson’s statement the next day to investigators.
“I asked point blank if (Rezutek) raped her and Mr. Wilson said ‘yes,’” Knaus testified Thursday.
Circuit Judge Charles Constantine said the test lasted for about 10 minutes before the sheriff left with the equipment.
“I don’t think there’s any credible evidence to support that argument” that Wilson thought the test still was occurring when he made the statements to investigators. “I don’t see any basis for suppressing these statements. It (the test) was over,” Constantine said, denying the defense motion to suppress Wilson’s statements.
Hall said while she understands the judge’s ruling, she disagrees with it. She declined to comment after the hearing.
Wilson, now of Greenfield, and Rezutek, now of Big Bend, are due back in court Sept. 9 and their trial is set for Oct. 6.
An investigation began after the woman told Racine County Sheriff’s detectives that she was in the basement of Rezutek’s home on June 9, 2012, when he tried to kiss her, but she rebuffed him, according to their complaints.
The woman said she and Wilson were kissing and “flirting” when Rezutek allegedly started pulling her pants and she began “freaking out.”
She told investigators she tried to get up, but Wilson held her, the complaints state. The woman said she was lying against Wilson when she felt Rezutek sexually assault her, according to the complaints.
Last month, Constantine ruled that Rezutek’s statements to sheriff’s investigators were made voluntarily and can be used at his trial.