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Press Release

Rome Man Pleads Guilty to Receipt and Possession of Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York
Man Admits to Conduct That Took Place Over Decades in His Home

SYRACUSE, NEW YORK - Michael Mayhew, age 56, of Rome, New York, pled guilty today to one count of receipt of child pornography and three counts of possession of child pornography.

The announcement was made by United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman, Janeen DiGuiseppi, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and New York State Police (NYSP) Superintendent Kevin P. Bruen.

Mayhew, who remains detained pending his sentencing scheduled for March 9, 2022, before Chief United States District Judge Glenn T. Suddaby in Syracuse, New York, faces at least 5 years and up to 20 years in prison, and a term of supervised release of between 5 years and life. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.  Mayhew will also be required to register as a sex offender.

As part of his guilty plea, Mayhew admitted that in December of 2018 he took photographs of a 6 year old child naked in his bathroom using his cellular telephone, including images that captured the child’s genitals.  He also admitted that in 1993 and 1994 he secretly video recorded 3 children under the age of 12 in his home, again capturing videos of them naked and in two instances with their genitals visible  He further admitted that from 2010 to 2015 he downloaded numerous graphic video files of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct from the internet. Finally, Mayhew admitted that in March of 2019 he possessed 184 images of child pornography on an electronic storage device in his home as well as the videos he took in 1993 and 1994 on two separate VHS tapes.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Oneida County Sherriff’s Office, Rome Police Department, Oneida County District Attorney’s Office, Oneida County Child Advocacy Center, New York State Police, United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Geoffrey J. L. Brown as part of Project Safe Childhood.

Launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice, Project Safe Childhood is led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (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

Updated November 9, 2021

Project Safe Childhood