Skip to main content
Press Release

Missouri Man Sentenced to 20 Years in prison for Recording Child Sexual Abuse

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Missouri

CAPE GIRARDEAU – U.S. District Judge Matthew T. Schelp on Wednesday sentenced a man who recorded his sexual abuse of a 13-year-old girl and recorded other children in the shower to 20 years in prison.

Matthew A. Prewett, 43, of Kennett, in Dunklin County, engaged in sexual contact with a 13-year-old girl beginning in April of 2022, and recorded his crimes on video. He also placed hidden cameras in his home, including in the bathroom, and recorded children between ages 12 and 17 while they were nude and showering.

The investigation began after the victim’s mother found sexually suggestive text messages from Prewett on her daughter’s phone. 

Prewett pleaded guilty in November to a felony charge of sexual exploitation of a minor.

The case was investigated by the Kennett Police Department and the FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Hunter is prosecuting the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Department of Justice Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit


Robert Patrick, Public Affairs Officer,

Updated February 21, 2024

Project Safe Childhood