For Immediate Release
Susan Kang Schroeder
PAROLEE SENTENCED TO 15 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR SEXUALLY ASSAULTING 12-YEAR-OLD GIRL
HE MET ON MYSPACE
SANTA ANA – A parolee was sentenced today to 15 years to life in state prison and lifetime sex offender registration for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl he met on MySpace. Matthew Castaneda, 36, Anaheim, was found guilty by a jury May 14, 2012, of two felony counts, including one felony count of aggravated sexual assault of a child and one felony count of lewd acts on a child under 14, and a sentencing enhancement allegation for a prison prior was found true. The defendant was on parole for a 2007 prior conviction for felony domestic violence and violating a restraining order.
In November 2009, Castaneda met 12-year-old Jane Doe on MySpace and began communicating with her online. On Feb. 17, 2010, the defendant met the victim near South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa and took an Orange County Transit Authority bus with her to Anaheim. At approximately 6:00 p.m., after walking around in two different parks, the defendant took Jane Doe to his motel room at Zaby’s Motor Lodge on Harbor Boulevard and Katella Avenue in Anaheim. He sexually assaulted the victim at the motel and then fled the scene.
At approximately 6:30 p.m., Jane Doe left the room, found an Anaheim Police Civilian Traffic Controller, and asked to be taken home. Jane Doe was reported missing that same day to the Santa Ana Police Department (SAPD). Upon further investigation, SAPD officials learned that she had been sexually assaulted by Castaneda.
On the evening of Feb. 19, 2010, Anaheim police officers located and arrested Castaneda at a warehouse on Placentia Avenue in Costa Mesa.
Castaneda’s lifetime sex offender registration bars him from entering County recreational areas and City parks that have passed the Sex Offender Ordinance. Visit www.orangecountyda.com to read the prior press releases on the County’s Sex Offender Ordinance as well as the 13 other cities that have enacted the Child Safety Zone Ordinance including Costa Mesa, Huntington Beach, Irvine, Laguna Hills, Lake Forest, La Habra, Los Alamitos, Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Santa Ana, Seal Beach, Westminster, and Yorba Linda.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Cynthia Herrera of the Sexual Assault Unit prosecuted this case.