by Paul Bowers
Louis Neal "Skip" ReVille pleaded guilty to 23 indictments today in a Charleston County court, and Judge R. Markley Dennis handed down a sentence of 50 years' incarceration and seven years under supervision. ReVille is required to serve at least 85 percent of his sentence before being eligible for parole, meaning he could potentially be out of prison at age 75, but because of a South Carolina law that provides for special handling of sexually violent predators, he might end up effectively serving a life sentence.
ReVille, who never requested bail or a jury trial, received the maximum sentence on most of the indictments, which included performing a lewd act on a minor, disseminating obscene material to a minor, criminal solicitation of a minor, and first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor. The sentences were concurrent, so the total length of his sentence is equal to that of his most serious charge, first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor. He could have received anywhere from 25 years to life on that charge.
After the court hearing ended, Ninth Judicial Circuit Solicitor Scarlett Wilson called Judge Dennis' decision "a smart sentence." ReVille's case is affected by the Sexually Violent Predator Act, a South Carolina law passed in 1998 that provides for the involuntary commitment of mentally abnormal sexual predators to state mental hospitals. Starting 270 days prior to ReVille's release, a court-appointed expert will evaluate whether he can safely be released. If ReVille is found to be a sexually violent predator at that time, he will be committed to an intensive treatment program through the S.C. Department of Mental Health, and his mental status will be reviewed every year to determine whether it is safe to release him. If he is ever set free, he will have to update his photo and registration with the South Carolina Sex Offender Registry every 90 days.
"He might not be getting out," Wilson said. "If he makes it to age 74 and his 85 percent is up, if he goes through the Sexually Violent Predator proceeding, the chances are he's going to be deemed a predator, and they're not going to let him out until he's cured. And there is no cure."