Monday, May 21, 2018
Joplin man pleads guilty to sex charge involving minor
A pre-sentence investigation was ordered for Gary Stewart, 37, and sentencing will be held at a later date.
A federal grand jury indicted Stewart, who was already facing three felony statutory rape charges in Jasper County Circuit Court, in April.
Stewart's crimes were described in his plea agreement:
On December 29, 2016, Jane Doe was interviewed at the Children’s Center in Joplin by forensic interviewer Tiffany Bogardus.
During the course of the interview, Jane Doe informed the interviewer that she and STEWART communicated via text messages transmitted with her iPhone and ZTE981 cellular telephones.
During these text exchanges, STEWART asked Jane Doe to produce and transmit sexually explicit images of herself. Jane Doe complied with these requests, and produced and transmitted sexually explicit images of herself, taken at STEWART’s direction, to STEWART via text messaging. The photographs were taken using the aforementioned cellular telephones, both of which were manufactured outside the state of Missouri.
The investigators were able to seize and examine both cell phones utilized by Jane Doe to communicate with STEWART. A forensic examination detailed numerous text messages sent between Jane Doe and STEWART discussing sexual activity.
Several sexually explicit photographs of Jane Doe were also recovered from the telephones. Photographs of STEWART posing naked were also located on the phone.
On January 26, 2017, Joplin Police Detective Jason Hutchins made contact with STEWART at the Jasper County Detention Center with regard to a separate investigation. STEWART admitted having been involved in a sexual relationship with Jane Doe