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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Virginia

Friday, April 7, 2017

Serial Child Molester Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison

NORFOLK, Va. – A registered sex offender who was collecting child pornography was sentenced today to 20 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release.

Michael Murphy, 68, of Norfolk, pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography on Dec. 28, 2016. According to court documents, Murphy was identified by the Norfolk Police Department in March 2016 when a 9-year-old girl disclosed that she was being molested by Murphy. Subsequent to his arrest, Murphy’s electronics were seized and analyzed, which resulted in the discovery of child pornography images that Murphy had collected on the Internet. Murphy was a registered sex offender, having been convicted in Norfolk courts of various offenses: in 1993 of attempted statutory rape and sodomy; in 1994 of production of child pornography, carnal knowledge, and sodomy; and in 2006 of indecent liberties with children. Murphy’s minor victims have ranged from 4 years old to 14 years old.

This investigation was a part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Michael K. Lamonea, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Norfolk; and Larry D. Boone, Chief of Norfolk Police, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Arenda L. Wright Allen. Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth M. Yusi prosecuted the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:16-cr-115.

Project Safe Childhood
Updated April 7, 2017