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Pastor sentenced to 4 months jail time, 4 months Huber after pleading guilty in child sex assault case

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WAUKESHA COUNTY -- A Waukesha County judge sentenced 73-year-old Peter Knebel, a Waukesha pastor, to one year in the Waukesha County Jail. This, after Knebel pleaded guilty to an amended charge of second-degree sexual assault of a child.

Peter Knebel

Peter Knebel

The judge on Tuesday said Knebel's first four months will be spent in the jail, the second four months on Huber, and the last four months have been stayed. However, if Knebel violates any of the terms of his sentencing -- he will serve a much harsher sentence (four years in prison and six years of extended supervision).

Knebel was accused of sexually assaulting a 10-year-old girl in his office at Fox River Christian Church. He originally faced a count of first-degree sexual assault.

The criminal complaint says on July 19, 2015, Knebel brought the girl into his church office so she could use his computer. The complaint says he had the girl sit on his lap, then he rubbed his hands over her chest.


"Given the nature of the touching that was involved, his cooperativeness with police, the statement that he provided admitting what took place, his remorse -- I do believe staying his prison would be appropriate," said Ted Szczupakiewicz, prosecutor.

judge1The defense agreed with that recommendation.

"Both Dr. Merick and his counselor who he's now been meeting with for quite a while commented that he is very low risk," said Eryn Menden, defense attorney.

In court Tuesday, Knebel express his remorse for his crime.

"I do ask for forgiveness from everybody that I hurt. Not for myself because I don't deserve it. But so that each one of them can begin the healing process for themselves," Knebel said.

Peter Knebel

Peter Knebel

Knebel also got 10 years probation. If he violates the conditions and time, he will go to prison.

Knebel is a former school bus driver for the City of Waukesha School District from August 2009 through June 2015 (when he retired). School district officials say Knebel worked for their private bus company “First Student” most recently. He was suspended from Fox River Christian Church as a result of this investigation.


  • Sick of this nonsense

    4 months are you kidding me, that’s all this piece of trash got? Something has to change. These sick pieces of s**t are getting no time for ruining these kids lives. Only help for these sick perverts is to put them down. Where is the outcry. These are our children!! What kind of message are we sending. Sexually assault a kid ruin their life and you don’t even go to prison. The prosecutor needs to be fired!!!

  • Clayton Bigsby

    He should be going to prison. Don’t tell me this is the first time he has done this! Lock his old sorry *ss up for 10 years and let his fellow inmates have some fun with him.

  • Malai

    Those poor babies… their offender will be back out in no time.. this is absolutely sick! I wouldn’t be surprised if the prosecuter have sexually abused children as well being that he just gave this man a damn slap on the wrist!!! He needs to be in prison!!!!

  • Ryan Raether

    All sex offenders should be Castrated! There is no fixing them

    Ryan Raether of Sun Prairie was caught getting his teenage step daughter drunk and pulled out his penis and exposed himself to her. And talked about orgasms and how they felt, was only sentenced to 2 years probation and a 90 day huber sentence. And because the HR lady at Stevens Construction where Ryan is still employed is friends with his probation officer. Sex offender Ryan was allowed to drive his company vehicle to and from jail in marquette county all while using the company gas card. Nice companies pay for and give special privileges to sex offenders. Btw Stevens construction is building the new Bartolata restraunt in Wauwatosa. Watch your teenage girls around the construction site. He works there regularly.

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