Sheriff Rick Stallings announced Monday that Dent County has been awarded the 2017 State Cyber Crime Grant to support the South Central Missouri Computer Crime Task Force. The sheriff’s office will receive $46,742 from the program through the Missouri Department of Public Safety.

This grant, which is retroactive from June 1, 2016, and runs through May 31, 2017, will fund the salary of a special investigator, located at the digital forensic lab in Salem, forensic software maintenance, internet access, and forensic software for the examination of cell phones. Dent County is the recipient of the grant and administers it for the task force agencies. There is no local match requirement for this award.

The South Central Missouri Computer Crime Task Force provides investigations, technical support, computer forensic examinations, officer training in identifying and seizing electronic evidence, and Internet Safety presentations to schools in the region. The South Central Missouri Computer Crime Task Force is comprised of investigators from various agencies and provides services to Dent, Pulaski, Phelps, Crawford, Iron, Reynolds, Shannon, Texas, and Washington Counties. The Task Force provides investigative and technology expertise to assist law enforcement in South Central Missouri in the investigation and prosecution of cases where digital evidence may be involved, particularly crimes against children.

The South Central Missouri Computer Crime Task Force is also supported by the Missouri Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force with funds made available by the US Department of Justice from the PROTECT ACT, as well as the funds from the SCCG program.