U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Missouri
(816) 426-3122
December 10, 2014

Two Men Indicted for Child Sexual Exploitation

SPRINGFIELD, MO—Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that two southern Missouri men were indicted by a federal grand jury today, in separate and unrelated cases, on charges involving the sexual exploitation of children.

USA v. Talbott

Jeremiah Shane Talbott, 37, of Oronogo, Mo., was charged in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield, Mo.

Today’s indictment alleges that Talbott used a cell phone to attempt to induce an individual whom he believed to be less than 18 years of age to engage in illicit sexual activity between June 26 and Aug. 26, 2014.

The indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Talbott to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offense, including his cell phone.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ami Harshad Miller. It was investigated by the Southwest Missouri Cybercrime Task Force, Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the FBI.

USA v. Penn

Edward Penn, 31, of Hartville, Mo., was charged in an indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield, Mo.

Today’s indictment alleges that Penn received and distributed child pornography over the Internet between Jan. 1, 2013, and Oct. 3, 2014.

The indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Penn to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offense, including his cell phone.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the Southwest Missouri Cybercrime Task Force and Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

Dickinson cautioned that the charges contained in these indictments are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.

Project Safe Childhood

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”

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