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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Mescalero Apache man sentenced to 22 years in prison for abusive sexual contact

              ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – David Joe Melendrez, 56, of Mescalero, New Mexico, and an enrolled member of the Mescalero Apache Tribe, was sentenced in federal court in Albuquerque today to 22 years in prison for abusive sexual contact.

              In the plea agreement, Melendrez acknowledged sexually abusing multiple children, ranging in age from seven to 14, over the course of several years. The abuse took place on the Mescalero Apache Indian Reservation and all of the victims were members of the Mescalero Apache Tribe. 

              Upon his release from prison, Melendrez will be subject to 10 years of supervised release.

              The FBI and the Bureau of Indian Affairs investigated this case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Marisa A. Ong prosecuted the case.

Indian Country Law and Justice
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
Updated October 27, 2020