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Press Release

Albuquerque Man Sentenced to 120 Years for Producing and Distributing Child Pornography Depicting Two Toddlers

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of New Mexico
Michael Dameon Blackburn Prosecuted Under Project Safe Childhood

ALBUQUERQUE – Yesterday afternoon, U.S. District Judge William P. Johnson imposed sentence on Michael Dameon Blackburn, 31, of Albuquerque, N.M., for his conviction for producing, distributing, receiving and possessing child pornography depicting two toddlers. Judge Johnson sentenced Blackburn to 120 years of imprisonment to be followed by a lifetime of supervised release, and ordered Blackburn to register as a sex offender. The Judge also ordered Blackburn to pay $430,800.00 in restitution to the two children who were victims of his criminal conduct.


Blackburn’s sentence was announced Acting U.S. Attorney James D. Tierney, Special Agent in Charge Waldemar Rodriguez of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in El Paso, Tex., Bernalillo County Sheriff Manuel Gonzales, III, and Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden Eden, Jr.


In announcing the sentence, Acting U.S. Attorney Tierney said, “The U.S. Attorney’s Office has made it a priority to prosecute those who exploit young, vulnerable children. While there are never any winners in these cases, we hope that the knowledge that Blackburn will spend the rest of his life in prison where he can never harm them or any other child will bring a measure of solace to the two young children he so terribly exploited.”


“HSI will continue to work closely with its law enforcement partners, as it did in this case, to keep our children safe and our communities strong against these heinous crimes and criminals,” said HSI Special Agent in Charge Rodriguez. “This is our message to those who prey on children: we will find you, we will bring you to justice, and we will make you answer for your despicable crimes.”


“The Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office is committed to collaborating with federal agencies to proactively investigate crimes against children, and that commitment is reaffirmed when, as in this case, we are able to rescue young victims from the sexual predators who exploit them,” said Bernalillo County Sheriff Gonzales. “Let this case serve as a warning to those who prey on children, we are dedicated to identifying you and holding you accountable for your repulsive crimes.”


“We must do the utmost to ensure those who prey on innocent children are punished to the full extent of the law. It is a privilege to work alongside our law enforcement partners and hold these worst of the worst criminals accountable,” said Albuquerque Police Chief Eden.


HSI special agents arrested Blackburn in Dec. 2013, on a criminal complaint charging him with producing and distributing visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct in Bernalillo County, N.M., between March 2013 and Dec. 2013. In Jan. 2014, a federal grand jury filed a five-count indictment charging Blackburn was distribution, receipt and possession of child pornography, and two counts of producing child pornography. The indictment alleged that Blackburn committed all five offenses in Bernalillo County between Jan. 2013 and Dec. 2013.


The investigation leading to the charges against Blackburn began on Nov. 15, 2013, when HSI in Albuquerque received information from the HSI Cyber Crimes Center about a pornographic image of a young child victim who might be in the Albuquerque area. HSI’s investigative efforts identified a residence in northeast Albuquerque as a possible location for the person who may have distributed the pornographic image of the young child victim.


Court filings indicate that on Dec. 17, 2013, law enforcement officers conducted a welfare check at the residence and made contact with Blackburn and two children – a girl and a boy, both two years of age – who were left in Blackburn’s care while their parents were out of town. The officers learned that Blackburn had been sexually molesting the toddlers from at least March 2013 through Dec. 2013, and taking photographs and making videos of the toddlers while he molested them. They also learned that Blackburn emailed the pornographic images and videos of the toddlers to others. The two young victims were immediately removed from the residence and put into protective custody.


Blackburn entered a guilty plea on March 14, 2016, to all five counts of the indictment. In his plea agreement, Blackburn admitted distributing a video of a female toddler being forced to perform a sexual act on an adult male. He also admitted receiving a video of a male toddler being forced to perform a sexual act with an adult male, and possessing a pornographic image of a female toddler. Blackburn also acknowledged producing pornographic images of a female toddler and a male toddler.


This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of HSI, Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office and the Albuquerque Police Department, all members of the New Mexico Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Marisa A. Ong and Shammara Henderson prosecuted the case as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice (DOJ) to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and DOJ’s Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, 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


The Operation also was brought as a part of the New Mexico ICAC Task Force’s mission, which is to locate, track, and capture Internet child sexual predators and Internet child pornographers in New Mexico. There are 82 federal, state and local law enforcement agencies associated with the ICAC Task Force, which is funded by a grant administered by the New Mexico Office of the Attorney General. Anyone with information relating to suspected child predators and suspected child abuse is encouraged to contact federal or local law enforcement.

Updated June 26, 2017

Project Safe Childhood