Jury Convicts Diamond Man, Terry Lee Miksell of Sexual Exploitation of a Child
Faces at Least 15 Years in Prison
Terry Lee Miksell, 65, was found guilty on Tuesday, March 29, of one count of producing child pornography and one count of using the internet and a cell phone to induce a child to engage in sexual activity.
At the time of the offense, Miksell was employed as a counselor at a Purdy, Mo., drug treatment facility.
Facebook initiated two CyberTips in September 2019 after locating sexually explicit messages and images between Miksell and a 16-year-old victim. Miksell asked the child victim in Facebook Messenger chats to send him sexually explicit images and videos. She told investigators she sent those images and videos at his request. Miksell also sent pornographic pictures of himself to the child victim.
Officers executed a search warrant at Miksell’s residence on Jan. 16, 2020, and seized several devices, including a cell phone. The cell phone contained a pornographic video of the child victim.
Following the presentation of evidence, the jury in the U.S. District Court in Springfield, Mo., deliberated for approximately 30 minutes before returning guilty verdicts on both counts to U.S. District Judge Roseann Ketchmark, ending a trial that began Monday, March 28.
Under federal statutes, Miksell is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of life in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys James J. Kelleher, Stephanie Wan, and Ami Harshad Miller. It was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and the Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force.
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.