Gillette Brothers Arrested For Domestic Assault On Same Night

Two Gillette brothers pleaded not guilty Monday to separate but related domestic assault charges. They were arrested within an hour of each other Sunday.

Jen Kocher

July 09, 20246 min read

Campbell county sheriff
(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

GILLETTE — Two brothers pleaded not guilty to domestic assault and other charges Monday in Campbell County Circuit Court stemming from separate but related fights Sunday night.

Clayton Salyer, no age given, has been charged with strangulation of a family member, three counts of domestic violence and one of domestic assault against his fiancée.

Zachary Salyer, 28, was arrested for domestic assault, a misdemeanor punishable up to six months in jail and a $750 fine, for allegedly hitting his wife after she woke him up to tell him his brother had been arrested.

First Fight

Campbell County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to a call around 11:45 p.m. Sunday from Clayton’s fiancé saying she’d been assaulted by him, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case. She was able to escape the couple’s home to a neighbor’s while Clayton reportedly fled on foot prior to the deputies arriving.

Clayton’s fiancée told deputies that the couple been at Zachary’s home earlier in the evening and had gotten into an argument on the drive home with their infant child.

During the drive, Clayton allegedly called her a slew of derogatory names, prompting her to tell him she was leaving him, the affidavit says.

He then reportedly took the keys out of the ignition and told her she wasn’t leaving.

Once home, she set the child down on the couch in the living room and went into the back bedroom to charge her phone, court documents state. She reported being scared because Clayton was acting so “belligerent” and was “highly intoxicated.”

When she returned to the living room, she saw Clayton attempting to pick up the child and went to intervene. As she reached for the child, Clayton allegedly pushed her back, saying, “Get your hands off my f***ing kid,” according to the affidavit.

The fight continued down the hallway into the bedroom as she attempted to reach for their child, at which point she intervened to slow the descent as he lowered the child onto the bed.

His anger then allegedly turned on her as he jumped on top of her and reportedly began slapping her in the face with his open hands, the affidavit says. She described the pain as a three on a scale of one to 10, according to court documents filed in the case.

She fought back and attempted to escape the bedroom when he allegedly grabbed her by the hair and drug her down the hallway, where he also “fishhooked” her in the mouth causing bleeding.

At some point during the struggle, she believes her head may have gone through the drywell, court documents state.

Clayton then reportedly put her in a headlock causing her to be lightheaded and out of breath at times at which point she feared she might die, according to the affidavit.

As she continued to scratch and try to fight him off, Clayton allegedly told her, “I’m going to kill you. I’m already dead.”

The deputies noted a puncture wound on her right arm, several scratches and lacerations on her face as well as red marks and signs of bruising on her neck, court documents state.

Zachary Salyer. A booking photo for Clayton Salyer wasn't available because his case hasn't yet been bound over in court.
Zachary Salyer. A booking photo for Clayton Salyer wasn't available because his case hasn't yet been bound over in court. (Cowboy State Daily Staff)

Chasing Him Down

As deputies were taking the woman’s report, they spotted a 1993 Ford starting to turn onto the couple’s street at about 12:20 a.m. Monday, before abruptly turning back onto Highway 14-16 at a high rate of speed.

Clayton’s fiancée told deputies that she thought the vehicle belonged to his friend, so they followed, catching up with the vehicle within the next few blocks. In the vehicle, they found the friend and another passenger with Clayton in the back seat.

The friend admitted to deputies that he had been bringing Clayton home but turned at his Clayton’s request when they saw the police presence.

Clayton denied the accusations and was placed under arrest.

‘You Hit Me In The Head’

The second incident involving Zachary Salyer shortly after his brother’s arrest.

A Gillette police officer approached Zachary’s residence where he heard shouting coming from an attached garage, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case.

Through windows in the upper panel, the officer saw Zachary and another man, who would turn out to be the driver who picked his brother up earlier. He had stopped by to inform Zachary of the Clayton’s arrest.

The officer heard the friend shout at Zachary, “You hit me in the head!” the affidavit says.

Zachary then sat down in a chair facing the windows without responding to him as Zachary’s wife also entered the garage, shouting, “You hit me in the head, too.”

She then reportedly leaned over him within inches of his Zachary’s face, screaming, “Get your own f***ing phone.”

The affidavit says Zachary then reportedly threw a wide “haymaker” punch at her face, but the friend was able to intervene and block the brunt of it.

The officer saw her head recoil, but couldn’t confirm if the woman had hit or had been recoiling to avoid the punch, court documents state.

The officer then knocked on the door and asked them to come outside, at which point he noted “all parties were highly intoxicated,” according to the affidavit.

Zachary’s wife told investigators that he started swinging his arms toward her and the friend when they woke him up to tell him his brother had been arrested and that he “didn’t mean anything by it,” court documents state.

She also denied that Zachary had attempted to hit her in the garage despite the deputy telling her that he’d seen it with his own eyes, the affidavit says. The friend said he didn’t want to discuss it for fear of getting Zachary in trouble.

Zachary also denied that anything had happened and accused the police officer of not being tall enough to have seen anything through the garage windows.

Clayton is out on $7,500 cash commercial surety bond with his preliminary hearing scheduled for July 15 at 10:30 a.m. at Campbell County Circuit Court.

If found guilty, he could serve up to 12 years in prison and fines for all five offenses while Zachary could be subject to up to six months in prison, a $750 fine, or both.

Both brothers have been released from the Campbell County Detention Center pending future court proceedings.

Jen Kocher can be reached at

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Jen Kocher

Features, Investigative Reporter