|For Immediate Release
May 16, 2011
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
OCSD JAIL COOK CONVICTED OF SEXUALLY ASSAULTING TWO FEMALE INMATES WHO
WORKED FOR HIM
SANTA ANA – An Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) jail cook was convicted today of sexually assaulting two female inmates who worked under his supervision in the kitchen of the Orange County Jail. James Arroyo, 54, Fullerton, pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of sexual battery for Jane Doe #1 and two misdemeanor counts of battery and one misdemeanor count of being a detention facility employee attempting sexual activity with a confined consenting adult for Jane Doe #2. Arroyo has been sentenced to 270 days in jail, five years of formal probation, and sex offender registration.
At the time of the crime, Arroyo was a non-sworn employee of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) and worked as a cook in the Orange County Jail. Several female inmates worked under his supervision.
Jane Doe #1
For several months prior to February 2011, Arroyo violated his position of power and authority by frequently harassing 47-year-old inmate Jane Doe #1 while she was working in the jail kitchen. This is a sought-after position for inmates and a privilege. He pestered her multiple times every day by asking to touch and see her breasts. The victim refused every time but did not report the harassment for fear that she would lose her job in the kitchen.
On Feb. 12, 2011, Arroyo unlocked a locked storage closet, let Jane Doe #1 in to retrieve kitchen supplies, and then blocked the doorway. He continued to harass the victim by asking her again to touch her breasts. The trapped, intimidated victim replied, “Just do it.” Arroyo squeezed Jane Doe #1’s breasts twice before she rushed out of the closet. Following the sexual assault, Arroyo continued to repeatedly ask the victim to show him her breasts and allow him to touch them.
Over the next two days, Jane Doe #1 was shaking, appeared distraught and ill, and was afraid to go to work or the restroom alone. On Feb. 14, 2011, Jane Doe #1 disclosed the assault to OCSD, who immediately began investigating the case.
Jane Doe #2
For several weeks prior to February 2011, Arroyo violated his position of power and authority and constantly harassed 23-year-old inmate Jane Doe #2 while she was working in the jail kitchen. He pestered her multiple times every day by complimenting her lips and asking to kiss her. The victim refused every time but did not report the harassment for fear that no one would believe her. On multiple occasions, Arroyo intentionally brushed his arms and hands against her breasts while pretending it was unintentional in the course of kitchen work.
In early February 2011, Arroyo cornered the victim in a storage room and blocked her ability to exit by standing in the doorway. He continued to harass the victim by asking her again to kiss her. The trapped, intimidated victim allowed the defendant to give her a quick kiss on the lips before pushing her way past him.