By Shereen Siewert
WAUSAU — Prosecutors have reached a plea agreement with a 57-year-old former D.C. Everest Middle School science teacher accused of tying up and sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl and, in a separate case, accused of threatening a police officer who discovered the suspect allegedly violating conditions of his bond.
Peter Schmidt, of Mosinee, has five open cases in Marathon County, the most serious of which includes charges of first degree sexual assault with a person younger than 16, using a computer to facilitate a child sex crime, child enticement, false imprisonment, intimidating a victim/dissuade reporting, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Schmidt spent more than 28 years as a teacher in the D.C. Everest School District and taught at Riverside Elementary before his most recent role at the middle school.
He is no longer employed by the district.
An investigation began in May 2018 after a girl and her parents contacted Mosinee police. The alleged victim told police that she met Schmidt, who used the name “Kyle,” on a social media app called Whisper in the summer of 2016. Soon after the two began regularly communicating on both Whisper and Snapchat, Schmidt began telling the girl he wanted to have sex with her and “make her purr like a kitten,” according to the criminal complaint.
At one point, Schmidt bought the girl about $300 worth of cosmetics items and left it under a tree in a park near where the girl worked, police said, and continued to ask her to meet for sex. Eventually, the girl agreed to meet Schmidt in person and in August 2016 Schmidt allegedly picked her up and drove her to his home.
There, police say, Schmidt tied the girl to his bedpost using neckties and sexually assaulted her. He was arrested in August 2018; criminal charges were filed Aug. 24.
Schmidt was arrested again in January 2019 after an officer allegedly observed him driving erratically in Rothschild. Officers said Schmidt had glassy eyes and smelled strongly of alcohol. They also discovered drug paraphernalia containing marijuana residue in Schmidt’s possession, according to the police report.
That arrest prompted charges of third offense drunken driving, possession of drug paraphernalia and bail jumping.
Additional, unrelated charges of disorderly conduct and bail jumping were filed the same day against Schmidt connected to a December 2018 incident at The Office in Schofield. There, an assistant manager reported to police that Schmidt had entered the tavern with a young female who appeared to be using a fake ID to buy alcohol, according to court documents. The employee recognized Schmidt from past media coverage and asked Schmidt to leave the premises.That’s when Schimdt allegedly threw a drink at the employee before leaving with his female companion.
The incident was captured on surveillance video at the business.
Then in June, Schmidt was charged again, this time with possession of marijuana and three counts of bail jumping.
The most recent charges were filed Jan. 8. In that case, Schmidt allegedly threatened a Marathon County Sheriff’s deputy who arrested him on bail jumping charges after discovering him in a tavern, which is against Schmidt’s bond conditions. Schmidt, while in the back of a squad car, allegedly told the deputy to pull over, take off his uniform and “settle it like men.”
“I’ll knock you out like a little (expletive),” Schmidt allegedly told the deputy.
This is the fourth time Schmidt has broken bond since his August 2018 arrest on child sex charges. In January 2019, Schmidt was booked on third offense drunken driving charges, along with charges of possessing dug paraphernalia and bail jumping. He was also charged with disorderly conduct and bail jumping in a case unrelated to the drunken driving incident, court records show.
A jury trial on the sex assault charges was set to begin Feb. 4. But at a hearing Monday, prosecutors told Circuit Judge Greg Huber the two sides had come to an agreement. Instead of facing a jury, Schmidt will enter a formal plea to all charges in each of the five cases during a hearing Wednesday, Jan. 29.
He’ll be sentenced April 17 after a presentencing investigation is completed.