The following press release issued by the U.S. Attorney's Office of the Northern District of Texas was released on Thursday, August 25, 2022.
A 24-year-old man who sexually assaulted a child while on a mission trip in El Salvador was sentenced today to more than 20 years in federal prison, announced U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Chad E. Meacham.
Bryce Rawson, of Liberty, South Carolina, pleaded guilty in April to engaging in illicit sexual conduct in a foreign place, that is, sex acts with a minor. He was sentenced Thursday by U.S. District Judge Mark Pittman to 250 months in prison.
According to court documents, Mr. Rawson applied and was accepted to participate in a mission trip to El Salvador.
On July 5, 2018, he flew from DFW to El Salvador, where he stayed at the “Hope Center,” a property maintained by the religious organization sponsoring the mission trip. There, he met a 13-year-old girl who was also participating in the mission.
On July 22, he sexually assaulted the child on a balcony at the center.
Homeland Security Investigations’ Dallas and Tampa Field Offices conducted the investigation with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Aisha Saleem, CEOS trial attorney Charles Schmitz, and Alex Lewis are prosecuting the case.