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Man wanted on 126 sexual assault charges in US is extradited from Ecuador

Published on December 14, 2021

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Three weeks ago, the First Judicial District Attorney’s Office of Colorado confirmed sexual assault suspect Peter Robert Dettmer, 69, was successfully extradited from Ecuador. Dettmer is in custody at Jefferson County Jail on a $1 million cash bond.

According to the DA’s press release, Dettmer was brought back to the state on November 24th and now faces 126 sexual assault charges that stem from a 2016 case in Golden, Colorado.

He was arrested on the night of June 10, 2016, for that case. But on August 29th, he was released after pleading not guilty and paying a bond of $2,000 while the case was being conducted. When the trial began in January of the following year, Dettmer had already fled the country.

“It was disappointing when the gentleman was able to post bail and then the next thing you know he was gone,” said Joe Harvey, Golden’s deputy chief of police.

Dettmer’s extradition from Ecuador took place on November 24, 2021, however, he had been held in Ecuador since April 27, 2021. On November 23rd, the National Court of Justice ordered “the surrender of the citizen who had an extradition order open.”

Dettmer was arrested in the San Sebastián sector, in the historic center, of Cuenca, Ecuador where he had been living while on the run. In the neighborhood where he lived, he was known as the “gringo.”

According to the National Police, Dettmer owned a gambling establishment there. He had been in the country since 2019, and although he did not carry a false identity, he did use an alias.

Dettmer faces the following charges:

  • 63 counts of Sexual Assault – Victim Helpless (F3 felony)
  • 1 count of Sexual Assault – Victim Incapable due to Force/Drugs/Other (F3 felony)
  • 62 counts of Sexual Assault – Victim Incapable (F4 felony)

Dettmer’s extradition was carried out by the FBI with assistance from the U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs and the U.S. Department of State. It is the second extradition from Ecuador to the U.S. in the past 27 years.

Witnesses saw assault

Court records show Dettmer was arrested in Colorado on June 10, 2016, on multiple sex assault charges and entered a plea of not guilty on Aug. 29, 2016.

He was arrested after an alleged crime that happened at the Millstone condos on 11th Street in Golden, according to police documents.

Witnesses saw the assault involving a woman who appeared to be unconscious through a picture window with open curtains and called police, according to the arrest affidavit.

The witnesses also reported that it appeared the man was filming and/or photographing the woman who was naked and unconscious on a chair, according to the affidavit.

Prior to the alleged assault, the witnesses said they saw the same man from the apartment dragging the woman, who appeared to be intoxicated, into the building, the affidavit says.

Extradition is rare

Dettmer’s extradition is the second from Ecuador in the last 27 years, according to the district attorney’s office.

“It is rare and it’s not easy. It’s very complicated,” said Bob Pence, a former FBI agent.

Pence said once a warrant is granted, FBI agents work their contacts to get the arrest. In this case, he said it was likely FBI agents in Colombia that helped out.

“I can guarantee you that the agents in Bogotá would be exercising their relationships with the police they’ve trained in Ecuador, and then after that arrest is made, then starts the legal piece of it,” he said.

“As long as the warrants were there, [the agents] work hard on every one of them.”

Dettmer had December 1st court hearing scheduled at the First Judicial District Court. The district attorney’s office is not expected to release new information until the case is closed, citing regulations under Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct.

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