ST. LOUIS – A Hannibal, Missouri man who spent more than three decades working as a juvenile officer admitted in court Monday to picking up an at-risk teenager and engaging in illegal sexual activity with her.

Prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Missouri said Scott Burow pleaded guilty to one count of transporting a minor across state lines to engage in prohibited sexual conduct.

Burow, now 62, admitted to meeting the then 15-year-old girl on an online dating site in late March 2020. He negotiated with her and agreed to pay her $100 for sex. He also demanded she send him a nude image of herself to ensure she was not an undercover officer or working with law enforcement.

On April 2, 2020, Burow picked up the girl at a public park near a group home in Illinois. He brought the girl to his home and secretly recorded them having sex. Burow dropped her off at a motel in Palmyra, Missouri. The girl flagged down a passing police officer for help.

Prosecutors said the victim was a ward of the state at the time and living in a home for children struggling with issues related to attachment and developmental trauma.

As part of the plea agreement, Burow must forfeit all items confiscated by law enforcement during the investigation, including computers, cellphones, storage devices, and a camera.

Burow will be sentenced on Feb. 3, 2023. He faces up to 20 years in federal prison.