OPD’s Green honored by Children’s Advocacy Center of East Central Mo.

Dave Marner
Managing Editor

The Owensville police detective assigned to investigate child sex crimes was recognized Saturday as the Child Advocate of the Year by the Children’s Advocacy Center of East Central Missouri.

Det. Rob Green was one of 10 nominated for the award as each of the counties served by the Children’s Advocacy Center of East Central Missouri selects one person to consider. Staff from the center’s three offices make the final selection.

Nominees are recommended for the award by law enforcement investigators, juvenile officers, judges and children’s division investigators from each of the 10 counties the agency serves.

Green received his award Feb. 23 during the agency’s annual fund-raiser held in Washington, Mo. The Children’s Advocacy Center of East Central Missouri, with offices in Union, Hillsboro and Farmington, assists law enforcement agencies with conducting “child-friendly interviews” of sexual assault victims and witnesses to sex-related crimes and other crimes, according to Green. The agency also provides personnel to testify in court on behalf of these child victims to “lower the impact to the child involved,” said Green, who is also a member of the agency’s fund-raising board.

Green joined the Owensville police force in September 2009.

In 2017, he was assigned to represent Gasconade County on a federal agency based in St. Charles, Mo., which investigates internet crimes against children — or ICAC as it’s called. Along with working cases with ICAC investigators, Green is also responsible for teaching students, teachers, parents and other investigators about current criminal trends related to online communication.

“The goal is to stop criminal behavior before it happens whenever possible,” said Green.

A suspected in a case Green helped investigate locally in March of 2018 is currently in federal custody awaiting the anticipated plea deal in a case involving production of child pornography. Green enlisted the assistance of fellow ICAC investigators and personnel from Homeland Security leading up the man’s arrest as his apartment off of South Fourth Street.

Green has also worked with investigators from the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. Postal Service, and the FBI. One of those involved a New Jersey man who had mailed sexually explicit items to an Owensville girl and others across the nation. In turn, the 44-year-old man expected teen girls to return worn items of clothing and photographs of themselves posing with the items he had sent them.

He’s currently serving 22 years in federal prison.

“Being nominated by my peers is an honor in itself but being chosen to receive the yearly award is a huge honor to me,” said Green. “It is very humbling to know the hard work on child-related sex crimes has been recognized by those I work alongside and I couldn’t complete these investigations without the rest of those involved. Everyone that makes up that team deserves the award as well. I am grateful to be able to help children because most children are afraid to reach out for help and that is the best feeling to know you saved a child from having to be a victim any longer.”

Green said working with child advocates at the center has also given him an entirely new insight into these types of investigations and why team work is so important.

“Each and every part of the investigation is as important as the next, in my opinion,” he said. “And those team members work hand-in-hand together so well.”

City Marshal Robert Rickerd promoted Green to detective a couple of years after he joined the police force. Along with investigating all sex crimes locally, he also provides the follow-up work on burglary and theft cases along with narcotics investigations.

“He’s kind of a life a Swiss Army Knife,” said Rickerd. “He’s a multi-tasker.”

It’s his work with the advocacy agency where Green has excelled, said Rickerd. He noted there are a lot of qualified nominees for the award but Green’s peers chose him.

“He’s worked very hard on this and I’m very proud of him,” said Rickerd. “His work is an asset to the community. He does a lot of investigations of various types. He does a good job.”