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Press Release

Gainesville Man Pleads Guilty to Sexual Exploitation of a Minor

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Missouri
Faces at Least 15 Years in Prison

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A Gainesville, Missouri, man pleaded guilty in federal court today to coercing and enticing a teenage victim to engage in illicit sexual activity.

Tracy Todd Presson, 54, pleaded guilty before U.S. Chief Magistrate Judge David P. Rush to one count of the sexual exploitation of a minor and to one count of the coercion and enticement of a minor.

By pleading guilty today, Presson admitted that he produced child pornography, using a child victim, identified in court documents as Jane Doe 1, by recording him and Jane Doe 1 engaging in sexually explicit activity on multiple occasions.  Presson also admitted that he used FaceTime to coerce and entice Jane Doe 1 to engage in sexually explicit activity.  When law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Presson’s residence on Oct. 3, 2018, they found a SanDisk 32GB SD card that contained child pornography, including 165 images and 68 videos of Jane Doe 1 engaged in sexually explicit activity.

Under federal statutes, Presson is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of life in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Ami Harshad Miller and Byron Black. It was investigated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force, the Ozark County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). 

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 For more information about Internet safety education, please visit and click on the tab "resources."

Updated July 6, 2020

Project Safe Childhood