Thornton woman sentenced to 28 years after pleading guilty to child pornography charge


TAYLOR COUNTY— A year after being indicted in federal court, a Taylor County woman has been sentenced to a child pornography charge in federal court.

39-year-old Ashley Marie Weber, of Thornton, appeared in United States District Court on Tuesday to learn her fate after pleading guilty to one count of aiding and abetting production of child pornography in late October 2021.

The defendant was ultimately sentenced to 28 years, or 336 months, behind bars, according to United States Attorney William Ihlenfeld.

Ihlenfeld reported that Weber admitted to using a minor child to engage in sexually explicit conduct and producing child pornography from that conduct in June 2020, in Taylor County.

The charge comes after an investigation was launched by the Taylor County Sheriff’s Department which resulted in an August 2020 arrest of the defendant, along with her accomplice, Dallas Edward Weber, Jr., who had entered a guilty plea to the charge in June in federal court.

According to criminal complaints filed by Taylor County Sheriff Terry Austin, he was notified by a family member that the Webers had been allegedly sexually abusing a 12-year-old child, and that pictures and videos of the abuse existed.

The family member then provided the sheriff with a camera that contained the images of the abuse. According to Austin, there were both pictures and videos of the naked child and A. Weber in sexually explicit scenarios.

“There were several hundred pieces of evidence taken from the scene on Eby Road,” Austin revealed.

Additional searches of electronics that had been seized during the execution of search warrants on the residence were conducted by the sheriff’s department, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Following the investigation, federal charges were brought against the two.

After entering her guilty plea, Weber was facing at least 15 and up to 30 years of incarceration and a fine of up to $250,000. 

According to Ihlenfeld, under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

A. Weber’s co-defendant, D. Weber, was previously sentenced by the court to 28 years in prison back in November 2021.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah E. Wagner is prosecuted the case on behalf of the government, and U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Kleeh presided.

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