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Justice News

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

Thursday, January 19, 2017

North Carolina Man Indicted for Aggravated Sexual Abuse of a Child

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that a North Carolina man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for the sexual exploitation of a child in Joplin, Mo.


David Lee Perkins, 33, of Winston-Salem, N.C., was charged in a three-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Springfield, Mo., on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017. The indictment replaces a federal criminal complaint that was filed against Perkins on Dec. 12, 2016.


The federal indictment alleges that Perkins crossed state lines to engage in a sexual act with a minor under the age of 12, identified in court documents as Jane Doe, from April 16, 2014, to Dec. 11, 2016. Perkins is also charged with using the child victim to produce child pornography and with receiving and distributing child pornography.


According to an affidavit filed in support of the original criminal complaint, Joplin police officers were dispatched to a Joplin, Mo., hotel where Perkins was staying on Dec. 11, 2016. A female acquaintance of Perkins told officers that she found several videos on an iPad of Perkins engaged in sexually explicit conduct with Jane Doe. Officers contacted Perkins in his hotel room and placed him under arrest.


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.


This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ami Harshad Miller. It was investigated by the Joplin, Mo., Police Department, the FBI, and the Newton, N.C., Police Department.

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."

Project Safe Childhood
Updated January 19, 2017