Robert Jesse Strand

Sandoval County Detective Robert Strand has been accused of possessing child pornography.

Strand was arrested after special agents with the New Mexico Office of the Attorney General Internet Crimes Against Children Unit (ICAC) served multiple search warrants in Sandoval County, according to a news release from the attorney general’s office. They had received tips from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. 

According to a statement from the Sandoval County Sheriff’s Office, Strand, who has been an employee since 2014, was immediately placed on administrative leave pending further investigation by the sheriff’s office Professional Standards Unit.

“I am disturbed by the troubling allegations,” Sheriff Jesse James Casaus said. “I have instructed my staff to fully cooperate with ICAC investigators regarding the allegations. I do not tolerate criminal or unethical behavior. As sheriff, I will always take necessary action to hold all of our deputies to a high standard and to be accountable, both on and off duty.”

During the investigation, images of child sexual abuse were reported to be located on Strand’s electronic devices, according to the AG’s office. The children were reportedly as young as infants. 

“All children deserve to be safe in our community, and we will intervene to mitigate child exploitation in New Mexico,” State Attorney General Hector Balderas said in the release. 

Anyone with information relating to suspected child predators is encouraged to contact federal or local law enforcement or make an anonymous report through the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at http://www.missingkids.org/cybertipline or by calling 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).