A former New Orleans teacher and Boy Scout leader now living in Covington has been arrested on charges including child pornography and attempted simple rape involving a juvenile, and investigators are searching for other possible victims, the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office said Friday.
Dennis Mischler, 62, was arrested May 29 on a warrant for possession of child pornography, said Suzanne Carboni, a Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman. He was released May 31 after posting a $100,000 bond and with the stipulation that he have no unsupervised contact with minors.
Mischler was arrested a second time Wednesday on warrants for two counts of oral sexual battery and one count of attempted rape. The alleged incidents involved a juvenile, Carboni said.
He remained behind bars Friday, according to St. Tammany Parish jail records.
The most recent arrest stems from incidents from 2005 and 2006, Carboni said. Those alleged incidents happened in St. Tammany Parish, she said, adding that Mischler is under investigation for similar crimes in another unspecified jurisdiction.
The Sheriff’s Office said investigators are looking for additional victims not only on the north shore and in Orleans Parish but also in Arkansas, where Mischler lived briefly after Hurricane Katrina.
Mischler was a longtime educator in New Orleans, having worked for the city’s public schools from August 1984 until Katrina, said Danae Columbus, an Orleans Parish School Board spokeswoman. He returned to the OPSB in January 2008 and continued working, most recently at Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary School in Hollygrove, until his retirement in August 2008, Columbus said.
In between his stints with the OPSB, Mischler was a teacher at Lusher Charter School’s elementary campus, according to Kathy Riedlinger, the school’s CEO.
St. Tammany authorities said Mischler also was a former Scout leader in New Orleans.
Don Ellis, CEO of the Boy Scouts of America’s Southeast Louisiana Council, could not say whether Mischler was involved with the organization.
“While we cannot immediately confirm whether or not this individual was involved in Scouting, these types of allegations are intolerable,” he said in a statement. He said Scouting uses “criminal background and other checks, policies and procedures to serve as barriers to abuse and the prompt mandatory reporting of any allegation or suspicion of abuse.”
Anyone who might have information about this case or a possible victim of Mischler is asked to call Detective Warren Keller at (985) 276-1339.
Follow Danny Monteverde on Twitter, @DCMonteverde.