A former Los Lunas High School coach has been sentenced to 23 years in prison after his May conviction of production of child pornography and coercion and enticement of a minor.
Johnathon Bindues, 32, of Los Lunas, was convicted by a federal jury after he exchanged more than 17,000 text messages with a 15-year-old girl he coached at Los Lunas High School.
Between September 2020 and June 2021, Bindues requested nude images of the girl, identified as Jane Doe, sent her explicit images of himself and repeatedly encouraged her to delete the messages. The girl’s mother discovered the sexually explicit messages on her phone and reported the relationship to New Mexico State Police.
After his release from prison, Bindues will be subject to 10 years of supervised release and must register as a sex offender.
Bindues was an assistant and head coach for the Los Lunas High School girls track and field team, as well as an assistant coach for the girls basketball team. He was hired as an assistant coach for the girls track and field team in March 2017.
In October of that same year, he became an assistant coach for the LLHS girls basketball team and was named the girls track and field head coach in January 2019. Bindues was a contract coach with the Los Lunas Schools district and not a teacher.
In mid July of 2021, Bindues was arrested and charged with three counts of sexual exploitation of a child, third-degree felonies; three counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, fourth-degree felonies; as well as four counts of criminal sexual penetration and four counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor, all second-degree felonies.
Jane Doe disclosed to investigators she had sex with Bindues on three separate occasions, at the high school and his home.
In September 2021, the 13th Judicial District Attorney’s office dismissed the state charges against Bindues while waiting for the completion of the investigation by New Mexico State Police.
The 14 counts of sexual crimes against a minor were dismissed without prejudice, meaning criminal charges could be re-filed. According to online court records, state charges have not been re-filed against Bindues.
A federal grand jury indicted Bindues on March 23, 2022, on one count of coercion and enticement of a minor and eight counts of production of child pornography.
Julia M. Dendinger began working at the VCNB in 2006. She covers Valencia County government, Belen Consolidated Schools and the village of Bosque Farms. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists Rio Grande chapter’s board of directors.