What did Fruitland, New Mexico’s Derek Lorin Blackhorse plead guilty to?

Derek Lorin Blackhorse, 34, of Fruitland, San Juan County, New Mexico, United States is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation. He is accused of abusing two victims on the Native American reservation, which occupies portions northwestern New Mexico, northeastern Arizona, USA and southeastern Utah, USA.

On May 28, 2021, Blackhorse allegedly engaged in abusive sexual contact with a female minor victim while she was sleeping in her bed at her home and tried to engage in sexual activity with her. On June 21, 2021, he allegedly tried to engage in a sexual act with a male minor victim.


Both of the alleged victims are enrolled members of the Navajo Nation. Whether or not they are related to each other and to Blackhorse was not disclosed.

On August 23, 2022, a federal grand jury indicted Blackhorse. On September 22, 2023, he was arraigned and charged with attempted aggravated sexual abuse, abusive sexual contact and attempted sexual abuse.


On April 28, 2023, Blackhorse pleaded guilty to sexual abuse. The Fruitland resident admitted to engaging in sexual intercourse with the female victim on the Navajo Nation on May 28, 2021.

Under the terms of Blackhorse’s agreement, he can be sentenced to 6-8 years in prison. Upon his release from prison, he is required to register as a sex offender.

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