Cape Girardeau County Prosecuting Attorney Morley Swingle said Larry Eugene Windeknecht was scheduled to appear at a pretrial conference in Hillsboro, where the case was being heard on a change of venue. But Windeknecht pleaded guilty and waived a presentencing investigation, Swingle said.
Windeknecht was arrested Sept. 11 at Capaha Park. He had gone to the park to meet a person he believed was a 13-year-old girl whom he had arranged a sexual encounter with via text messages. But Windeknecht had actually been exchanging messages with a Cape Girardeau police detective, Darren Estes, and was arrested and charged with attempted enticement of a child.
Police began monitoring Windeknecht's text messages after the girl's mother reported her daughter had been receiving unwanted messages from a phone that was traced to Windeknecht, Estes testified at Windeknecht's preliminary hearing in October. Windeknecht obtained the girl's telephone number after the mother's boyfriend used the girl's phone to call him, Estes said.
Swingle said Friday that Windeknecht must serve at least five years of his sentence under Missouri law, but that he will likely be in prison for the entire seven-year sentence.
Capaha Park, Cape Girardeau, MO