News


Alleged child pornographer arrested in Pleasanton

Accused of 7-month involvement with 13-year-old girl

A Nebraska man already under federal indictment for child pornography is facing new charges involving an underage California girl following a traffic stop by Pleasanton police.

Todd Tackwell, 35, of Hastings, Neb., was arrested after the stop when police became suspicious of a 13-year-old passenger. After talking to the girl and her parents, the officer determined there had been inappropriate sexual behavior involving the pair, a Pleasanton police report said.

Tackwell admitted to police that the day before his arrest, he'd been notified of the indictment, following an investigation by Homeland Security into a child pornography distribution case dating to 2008, the report said.

Police say Tackwell met the 13-year-old he was with through a chat room in October 2009 and continued the relationship by phone.

In January, he drove cross country to meet the girl and began "a seven-month extensive sexual molestation of the child" that ended with his arrest, the report said, which stated the girl's parents were not aware of Tackwell's contact with her.

Tackwell is being held in Santa Rita Jail on a charge of continuous sex abuse of a victim under the age of 14. He's set to enter a plea Sept. 9.

Police withheld the information from the arrest, which occurred July 24, because of what they describe as "the sensitive and complex nature of the investigation."

Anyone with information that could help in the investigation is asked to contact Pleasanton police at 931-5100.

Comments

Posted by Mike, a resident of Highland Oaks
on Aug 20, 2010 at 4:10 pm

Until we can cut this particular species of bottom dwellers out of the food chain, we need to look to our kids' social development and self esteem.


Posted by Stop being nice to sex offenders, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 20, 2010 at 5:33 pm

Pleasanton (as well as the rest of California) needs to stop being so nice to sex offenders.

All the police worry about is if the sex offender is technically violating any conditions of parole. I personally think that if a person is a registered sex offender (for an offense against a minor), then that person should not be allowed to work/volunteer anywhere near kids.

Why would some P-town folks think it is okay to have a registered sex offender volunteer in an organization that is full of kids?


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 21, 2010 at 10:09 am

Sex offenders are very sneaky. They know how to worm their way into various situations where children are present. All Americans and especially children would be safer if everybody took more time to know who your children are contacting.

NO MERCY FOR SEX OFFENDERS. Know where your kids are, know their friends, the families of their friends and talk to them regularly so that you know what is happening in their daily lives.

If you suspect somebody, look into the matter. Better safe than sorry. Kids have a right to be safe and to feel safe. They need the supervision of parents even if they don't always like it.


Posted by Yeah PPD!, a resident of Val Vista
on Aug 21, 2010 at 3:10 pm

Way to go PPD!

This is why the police make so many traffic stops, not just for a quota, but to find something better. They did not say what the traffic stop was for but who cares? Maybe now people will stop complaining about being stopped for a brake light out and be happy that because of this one traffic stop, they caught a sexual predator preying on children.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 21, 2010 at 5:11 pm

HOORAY PPD!!! VIVA!


Posted by Wendy, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 21, 2010 at 6:47 pm

What organization lets child torturers volunteer with kids? That wasn't in the article.
(I don't consider adult abuse of children to be 'sex' regardless of what part of the body is involved. I consider it psychological and physical torture.)


Posted by Ben, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 21, 2010 at 6:49 pm

How could the police be suspicious of a child passenger in a car? What were the able to see of a child in a moving car that made them suspicious? This article is unclear.


Posted by Fred, a resident of Amador Estates
on Aug 21, 2010 at 7:47 pm

This reminds me of a youth minister in the late 90s who got in trouble for having child porn on his computer. I remember seeing that on the old 580/680 news program on ctv 30.


Posted by member, a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Aug 21, 2010 at 8:12 pm

He was employed and paid under the table in a local business in pleasanton where he worked among teenagers from our community. SO glad he's is locked away for a long long long time


Posted by victim, a resident of Donlon Elementary School
on Aug 22, 2010 at 7:37 am

I live in Nebraska and was a victim of this man before he was involved with this girl from the time I was 14-16. I feel so awful for me and my family not coming forward and him repeating the same behavior. May she get the justice she deserves.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore
on Aug 22, 2010 at 10:01 am

Dear "victim",
Please call the PPD and report what you know about this guy.



Posted by Karen, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 22, 2010 at 12:40 pm

How do people know details of this crime when the article is so full of holes?


Posted by victim, a resident of another community
on Aug 22, 2010 at 12:55 pm

Well perhaps there are holed but I know what he did to me for 2 years so I can imagine. Your PPD didn't really care when I called and tried to share what had happened with me either. I never got my justice because I was too scared to press charges against Tackwell. I hope this girl is and gets hers.


Posted by I grew up with this man, a resident of another community
on Aug 22, 2010 at 5:24 pm

TO VICTIM: If you had prior encounters with Todd you should contact Deborah Gelig Attn General in Omaha, Ne she will definetly take a statement from you and investigate if you want to see Todd held accountable for what he did to you. Just don't sit in the back of the room and not make an attempt to be heard.


Posted by Susan, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 22, 2010 at 7:32 pm

Dear Victim,
I bet you could help now, it doesn't matter that it was two years ago. I think you need to help for you own peace of mind. You can help get justice for yourself and other victims. I'm so sorry for the abuse you suffered.


Posted by Hybrid Owner, a resident of Valley Trails
on Aug 23, 2010 at 8:48 am

How does a 13 year old girl have continued phone and personal contact with a 35 year old man without her parents/responsible adults knowledge? Hmmmmmm.....? Seems like there is alot of information missing from this story. Regardless, I hope this man rots in jail.


Posted by Steve, a resident of Stoneridge
on Aug 23, 2010 at 12:11 pm

An absolute nightmare for the parents. It sounds like this girl is lucky to be alive. This guy is more than a child pornographer. He's at least a child rapist or perhaps kidnapper, although it's hard to tell from the story.

I'm a little curious why the paper chose to describe him as a child pornographer, rather than rapist or kidnapper.

I'm glad they saved this little girl. Hopefully all parents are using this story as a "teaching moment" for their plugged-in kids.


Posted by Steve, a resident of Stoneridge
on Aug 23, 2010 at 12:12 pm

An absolute nightmare for the parents. It sounds like this girl is lucky to be alive. This guy is more than a child pornographer. He's at least a child rapist or perhaps kidnapper, although it's hard to tell from the story.

I'm a little curious why the paper chose to describe him as a child pornographer, rather than rapist or kidnapper.

I'm glad the Pleasanton police saved this little girl. Hopefully all parents are using this story as a "teaching moment" for their plugged-in kids.


Posted by Also Curious, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 23, 2010 at 12:29 pm

From the story, "Anyone with information that could help in the investigation is asked to contact Pleasanton police at 931-5100."

If the police are asking if the public has any information that could help them in the investigation, wouldn't a photo of the suspected molester be helpful? Couldn't it be the case that people had seen this man hanging around other young girls? Why would strangers have any information regarding this specific case, especially with such a vague description of the suspect and the case itself?


Posted by Mary Carlin, a resident of Country Fair
on Aug 23, 2010 at 1:14 pm

Outstanding work by the Pleasanton Police!


Posted by concerned for other victims, a resident of another community
on Aug 23, 2010 at 3:07 pm

I hope if there are any other victims that they will come forward and tell their story. Do not sit in silence, make your voice be heard!


Posted by Please stop being so nice to registered sex offenders, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 24, 2010 at 1:03 pm

Sports organizations should not allow registered sex offenders to act as volunteers.

Follow the example of schools, where NO registered sex offender is allowed to be an active volunteer. In fact, they run background checks on all parents who want to be volunteers.

I understand that background checks can be costly, but come on, at least look at the Megan Law database for the list of registered sex offenders. There are not that many in Pleasanton, so it should be easy to do this and make sure that no registered sex offender can volunteer.

Pleasanton Police: if someone calls you with concerns about a sex offender, please take it seriously and do what you can. Hopefully what Victim went through is a rare thing, and hopefully you do take these complains seriously.


Posted by Karen, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 25, 2010 at 11:09 am

Dear Hybrid Owner,
Many abused children (abused outside the home) have abusive, neglectful parents. That is what makes them vulnerable targets for abuse by other people, besides the parents.


Posted by Alan, a resident of Downtown
on Aug 27, 2010 at 8:39 am

Any update on this guy and this case?


Posted by concerned, a resident of another community
on Aug 27, 2010 at 6:11 pm

Any victims should contact the Pleasonton District Attorney. Don't keep quiet! He can't hurt you now.


Posted by victim, a resident of another community
on Aug 27, 2010 at 8:21 pm

He enters a plea sept 9th


Posted by juror, a resident of Downtown
on Apr 25, 2012 at 7:42 am

Here's an update: Todd Brandon Tackwell of Nebraska was found GUILTY of Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child Under the Age of 14, AND of BURGLARY in the FIRST DEGREE yesterday, Tuesday, April 24, 2012 in the Hayward Superior Courts.
Kudos to VICTIM from Nebraska who came out and told her story. It helped make our conviction that much easier. I hope you two girls can move on with your lives and try to put this as far away from you as possible. My heart goes out to you both.


Posted by former classmate, a resident of another community
on Jul 18, 2012 at 8:01 pm

I was an extremely close friend of todd's all through highschool. I, myself, am a victim of sexual abuse (at the hands of others), and simply learning this information about a year ago, I periodically have nightmares and flashbacks and somehow feel like I should have seen something or been able to make some sort of difference. typical victim mentality though, I feel guilty for what he did, things that happened even after I moved away. This is just a small example of the pervasive cancer that child abuse is on the flesh of our society. God help us all!!!


Posted by Been there too, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 19, 2012 at 9:26 am

I hope Todd gets the help he needs. Often times molesters themselves are a product of abuse. We need to make sure that those who are subject to abuse get the counselling and help they need to stop the cycle of abuse-victim. To the victims, bravo for you coming forward. It isn't easy, and is humiliating; you were very brave to do it. Please make sure you have the help you need to deal with the demons this abuse left behind. It took me 20 years to get past mine.


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