Lancaster minister sentenced for sex assaults on children

Dennis Fred Rutledge

LANCASTER, S.C. — A Lancaster minister of music for more than four decades has been sentenced to 25 years after pleading guilty to sex assaults on children.

The Rock Hill Herald reports 63-year-old Dennis Fred Rutledge pleaded guilty Tuesday. Prosecutors say Rutledge was scheduled for trial Tuesday afternoon on first-degree sex assault with a child under age 11, but agreed to plead guilty before the trial began.

Rutledge was arrested Dec. 31, 2013, after authorities say he had illicit contact with underage girls. Detectives say he preyed on girls he met through the ministry. Rutledge was music director at Camp Creek Baptist Church for more than 40 years until his arrest.

Rutledge’s 25-year sentence will run concurrent with another 13-year sentence he received Monday for third-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor.


Information from: The Herald,