By Dawn Schuett
Post-Bulletin, Rochester MN
RED WING — A 65-year-old man, convicted in three sexual assault cases and characterized as the "devil in disguise" by one of his victims, has been sentenced to 16 years in prison.
Charles Richard Ottman of Red Wing apologized to his victims and their families during his sentencing hearing Friday in Goodhue District Court before Judge Thomas Bibus.
Ottman was arrested in January after a 13-year-old girl reported to authorities that Ottman had sexually touched her. Two more victims, a 25-year-old woman considered a vulnerable adult and a 17-year-old girl abused by Ottman when she was 9, were identified later by investigators.
Separate criminal complaints were filed in all three cases against Ottman. He was convicted on one count each of first-, second- and third-degree criminal sexual conduct.
One of the victims described for the judge how her life had been affected by what Ottman did to her. She said she "missed out on all the milestones of childhood." The girl said she attempted suicide, withdrew from social activities and did poorly in school after she was abused.
"My life was turned upside down, and now someone should turn his life upside down," she said.
Assistant Goodhue County Attorney Erin Schmickle read a victim impact statement from another woman who said she was molested 30 years ago by Ottman. Although the statute of limitations prevented charges from being filed in the case, the woman was a witness in these proceedings.
After the victim impact statements were read in court, Ottman said he accepted responsibility for his actions and that treatment he would receive while in prison would help him after his release.
Schmickle compared Ottman to a "human wrecking ball" who preyed upon the most vulnerable members of the community.
The judge said Ottman is likely to spend the rest of his life incarcerated. "In my opinion, that is the right thing to happen," he said, adding that he was convinced Ottman is a "terrible risk to society to re-offend."
He sentenced Ottman to 12 years for the first-degree criminal sexual conduct charge and four years for the third-degree charge, to be served consecutively for a total of 16 years. A 21-month prison sentence for second-degree criminal sexual conduct is to be served concurrently.
Ottman will have to serve at least two-thirds of the prison sentence, or more than 10 years, before he’s eligible for supervised release. That would be followed by another 10 years on conditional release.
The judge also ordered Ottman to pay a $1,500 fine, $82 surcharge and the counseling and medical expenses of his victims. Ottman must complete sex offender treatment, register as a predatory offender and have no contact with the victims.