UPDATE: Firefighter Convicted of Arson Sentenced to 5 Years in Prison

By: WSAW Staff
By: WSAW Staff

A Rib Lake firefighter convicted of asking his friends to start fires so he could put them out, will spend five years in prison and nine years on extended supervision.

During a plea deal in September, Jason Schmudlach, 21, pleaded no contest to four arson charges, as result seven other charges were dismissed.

In all, there were four arson fires; three barns and one abandon home. The fires took place between August and November 2011 in Rib Lake and Medford. The Taylor County Sheriff said the damage is estimated to be around $250,000.

According to the criminal complaint, Schmudlach called his fire chief on November 28, 2011 and said he had a confession to make. The chief agreed to meet him at the fire hall. Taylor County Law Enforcement accompanied the chief to the hall. Schmudlach was taken into custody.

Jury trials have been scheduled for Chris Zak, 19 of Medford; Tyler Yeager, 20, of Madison; two of the four suspects in this case.

A third suspect, Cain Wojcik, 20, of Stetsonville reached a plea deal with prosecutors in May. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 12 years on extended supervision.

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