Tucumcari man faces child porn charges

Thomas Garcia

A Tucumcari man is being charged with 45 felony counts of manufacturing child pornography, three felony counts of distribution of child pornography and 236 felony counts of possession of child pornography.

Stephen Hensley of Tucumcari was arrested on Thursday after agents of the New Mexico State Police’s Online Predator Unit linked him to an online profile of trading child pornography, said Lt. Eric F. Garcia NMSP PIO.

Hensley, 41, was arraigned on Friday in the Quay County Magistrate Court, his bond was set at $500,000 cash, according to court officials. He was initally held at the Quay County Detention Center, but was moved to the Guadalupe County Detention Center following his arraignment.

Attempts to contact Quay County staff about the reasons for the transport were unsuccessful.

Garcia said the Online Predator Unit received information linking an IP address in Tucumcari too the sharing child pornography.

“Based on that information New Mexico State Police approached the Grand Jury and obtained a subpoena for the subscribers information,” Garcia said. “That information led the agents to Hensley.”

Garcia said agents with the New Mexico State Police Online Predator Unit obtained and executed a search warrant for Hensley’s residence in Tucumcari.

Garcia said while searching the residence, agents interviewed Hensley who admitted to possessing child pornography images and storing those images on multiple disks. He said agents were able to find several hundred child pornography images on computers and disks.

“This is part of the Online Predator Unit’s proactive approach to stopping the illegal trading of child pornography over the Internet,” Garcia said.