Ellis Co. Prepared for Shortage Following Firefighter Arrests

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WAXAHACHIE, TX - Now that five Ellis county volunteer firefighters have been arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting a new recruit, who's going to put out the fires?

Well, Fire Marshall Joe Stewart has a message, "Don’t Worry, I got this."

“I have spoken with the fire chiefs from the adjacent fire departments, and they've agreed it won’t be any problem to provide more mutual aid over what they already provide,” Stewart said.

So, while the reason for the sudden shortage of firefighters is unprecedented, other volunteer departments are stepping up.

“Nobody in the fire service is happy about the circumstances that caused these issues. That’s not acceptable by any means," said Stewart. “But, looking at how we respond to that, that’s no different than every day. Holidays, the start of deer season, there can be any number of reasons we can be shorthanded on volunteers.”

The accusations are pretty gross. Five Ellis County volunteer firefighters allegedly sexually assaulted a recruit with a Chorizo sausage as part of a “hazing ritual.” A sixth person, Brittany Leanne Parten, is accused of filming the assault.

“I didn’t think that something like that could happen in my town,” said local Phillip Camacho.

“It’s pretty disgusting,” Kenneth Denny said. “It’s amazing that not one of them said ‘hey, this isn’t right.'”

Currently, all but one of the firefighters have posted bail and are out of jail.

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