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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Missouri

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Hartville Man Indicted for Child Sexual Exploitation

Project Safe Childhood

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Hartville, Mo., man was charged with an additional count of child sexual exploitation in a federal indictment today.

 

Edward Penn, 31, of Hartville, Mo., was charged in a two-count superseding indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield, Mo. Today’s indictment replaces a Dec. 9, 2014, federal indictment and adds one count. Penn has been in federal custody since his arrest on Dec. 10, 2014.

 

Today’s indictment alleges that Penn used a minor, identified as Jane Doe #1, to produce child pornography from Jan. 1, 2013, to Oct. 3, 2014. The indictment contains the original charge of receiving and distributing child pornography over the Internet from Jan. 1, 2013, to 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 this indictment 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."

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated July 21, 2015