PULASKI COUNTY, Missouri (PRESS RELEASE)- The Division of Drug and Crime Control announces the arrest of three individuals after a two-day child exploitation enforcement operation. The operation was conducted in Pulaski County, by members of the Division of Drug and Crime Control’s Digital Forensics Investigative Unit. The Patrol was assisted by the Missouri State Technical Assistance Team (STAT), Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, St. Robert Police Department, South Central Missouri Computer Crimes Task Force, Southeast Missouri Cyber Crime Task Force, and the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command.

On Wednesday March 21, investigators executed a search warrant at the residence of Maumau Benner, 19, on Shara Drive, in St. Robert, Missouri. As a result of their search, investigators located computer equipment used in the commission of the crime. Benner was arrested and transported to the Pulaski County Jail. He has been formally charged by the Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney with possession of child pornography. Benner’s bond was set at $500,000.00.

On Wednesday March 21, investigators executed a search warrant at the residence of Bryan Austin Prather, 20, on Kale Court, St. Robert, Missouri. As a result of their search, investigators located computer equipment used in the commission of the crime. Prather was arrested and transported to the Pulaski County Jail. He has been formally charged by the Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney with possession of child pornography. Prather’s bond was set at $500,000.00.

On Thursday, March 22, investigators executed a search warrant at the residence of William Wethington, 43, on Cortez Road, in Dixon, Missouri. As a result of their search, investigators located computer equipment used in the commission of the crime. Wethington was arrested and transported to the Pulaski County Jail. He has been formally charged by the Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney with possession and promoting child pornography. Wethington’s bond was set at $1,000,000.00.

The Division of Drug and Crime Control encourages Internet users to report promptly to the Patrol or local law enforcement anyone who attempts to engage in unwanted, inappropriate, or sexualized communications with children. The Digital Forensics Investigative Unit is partially funded by the Missouri Department of Public Safety State Cyber Crime Grant and the Missouri Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the patrol explained.