NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – A former City of Hampton employee was sentenced today to 16 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release for distribution of child pornography.
According to court documents, Robert Dobbins, 36, of Hampton, was discovered after federal law enforcement received information from a foreign law enforcement agency regarding the user “DEATHLYROSE55” on Website A. In September 2017, the user responded to a foreign law enforcement officer working in an undercover capacity and indicated that he had committed a hands on offense against a child. He also sent the investigator a mega link, which contained child pornography. Law enforcement linked the email address to a residence in Hampton, and determined that Dobbins was previously convicted of receipt and possession of child pornography in January 2005, while he was employed by the U.S. Navy.
During the execution of a federal search warrant, Dobbins, who at the time was a city of Hampton employee, acknowledged accessing child pornography from his city-issued Samsung smartphone using the internet. Dobbins admitted to agents that he cut and pasted photographs from Facebook of his friends’ daughters and re-posted them on his Website A account, “DEATHLYROSE55.” Dobbins also stated that he “traded” links to child pornography images and videos with other individuals who he met online utilizing Website A.
This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources” for more information about Internet safety education.
G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Michael K. Lamonea, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Norfolk, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Mark S. Davis. Assistant U.S. Attorney Megan M. Cowles 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. 4:17-cr-129.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Eastern District of Virginia