CONWAY, Ark. – A Mayflower man was sentenced to life in prison Thursday for the 2016 rape of a child.

A jury found William Tod Rickert, 56, guilty of rape of a minor after less than an hour’s deliberation. This was Rickert’s third felony conviction, after two earlier burglary convictions, mandating his receiving a sentence of life without parole, 20th Judicial District Prosecutor Carol Crews stated.

Trial testimony included two women who said they were assaulted by Rickert when they were minors, Crews stated.

Rickert was charged with raping a 13-year-old boy he was babysitting in his Mayflower home in 2016. At the time of the assault the young man had not told anyone about the incident, then coming forward in 2020.

The incident was reported in 2020 to the Arkansas State Police Child Abuse Hotline. The Arkansas State Police initiated an investigation after being contacted, according to online court records.

At the time of the investigation, Rickert was being held in Kentland, Indiana jail on burglary charges.

Rickert was interviewed by Kentland investigators. The young man of the 2016 incident was living in Oklahoma and was interview by investigators there. Arkansas State Police gathered the interviews and turned it over to the department’s Crimes Against Children division. Charges were then filed by the 20th Judicial District prosecutor.

Rickert was a registered sex offender when the charges for the Mayflower incident were brought against him 2020. He was held in the Faulkner County Detention Center pending trial.