Okaloosa County Deputies arrested Niceville resident Dennis Luke Rethmeyer and accused him of sexual battery on a child under the age of 12. The Sheriff’s Office announced Friday morning and accused Rethmeyer, 43, of committing multiple sexual assaults between 2014 and 2018.
Rethmeyer is being held without bond in the Okaloosa County Jail in Crestview and is awaiting a hearing in his case.
Investigators say Rethmeyer began molesting his eight-year-old victim until she was 12.
This is not Rethmeyer’s first encounter with the law, as he has had a total of 49 cases brought before the courts since 1996, primarily related to traffic violations. However, his past criminal record includes more severe offenses such as burglary and larceny in 1999, procurement of a prostitute in 2001, DUI in 2002 and 2008, domestic violence in 2004, trespassing in 2004, and resisting an officer without violence in 2004.
In Florida, sexual assault or battery committed by a person over 18 on an individual under 12 is considered a capital crime. This severity level means that, if convicted, Rethmeyer could face life imprisonment without parole.
Judge John Brown has been assigned the case and Assistant State Attorney Brooke Davis will serve on behalf of the prosecution. No attorney is listed as representing Mr. Rethmeyer as of 11:13 on July 21st.
A Pretrial conference, one of the first steps in beginning the trial, will take place on September 11 at 9AM.