ST. CHARLES COUNTY, Mo. – A young girl’s suspicions about the intentions of a 75-year-old St. Charles County man have resulted in charges of sexual exploitation of a minor.
According to a probable cause statement filed by the St. Charles County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, the 75-year-old, identified as Michael Mudd, and the juvenile knew one another. The juvenile reported Mudd would often take a lot of pictures of her and ask her to pose in different ways. In one instance, Mudd asked to take a picture of the girl sitting in her bed with her legs spread.
The alleged behavior is believed to have occurred between Sept. 1, 2021 and March 14, 2022.
On March 14, St. Charles County police detectives went to Mudd’s residence to question the 75-year-old. Mudd denied taking any inappropriate photos of the juvenile and offered his own reasons for why he had the girl pose in peculiar ways.
During questioning, a detective noticed several computer towers and external storage drives in Mudd’s residence. Prosecutors said Mudd gave detectives verbal and written permission to search his cellphone and a computer tower.
The St. Charles County Cyber Crime Task Force examined the devices and found several photos of the juvenile that had been altered to make her appear naked. One altered image showed a sex act and another had the juvenile’s face edited onto a picture of a naked woman.
Mudd was arrested on April 18 and questioned at the St. Charles County Police Station. Prosecutors said Mudd admitted to taking the photos and using a program to alter the images.
During the course of the investigation, detectives spoke with a relative of the juvenile, who told them Mudd molested her for several years when she was between 16 and 20 years of age. However, she declined to press charges against Mudd at the time.
Mudd later admitted to having sex with the woman and said he paid her each time. He also said he took nude photos of the woman. Detectives identified a portion of one of the nude photos that had been used in the altered picture of the juvenile.