Orange County

Deputy charged with sex assault

AN ORANGE COUNTY Sheriff’s Deputy has been arrested on sexual assault charges (Shutterstock).

An Orange County Sheriff’s Deputy has been charged with sexually assaulting two female inmates, including directing them to engage in sexual activity, while assigned to work at the Theo Lacy Facility in Orange.

Arcadio Rodriguez, 30, of Stanton, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to one misdemeanor count of sexual battery, one misdemeanor count of a detention facility employee engaging in sexual activity with a confined consenting adult and one misdemeanor count of possession of a cell phone in a correctional facility, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s office.

Rodriguez faces a maximum sentence of 18 months in the Orange County Jail if convicted on all counts.

The deputy is accused of establishing an inappropriate relationship with two female inmates incarcerated at the Theo Lacy Facility, including sexually assaulting the inmates on multiple occasions by touching them over their jail uniforms and showing them pornographic videos of himself while they were in their housing locations.

The assaults are believed to have begun in May 2022. Rodriguez was arrested after the Orange County Sheriff’s Department launched an investigation after discovering communications regarding inappropriate sexual behavior between by a deputy toward a female inmate.

“The wellbeing of people incarcerated in our jails is an incredible responsibility that goes far beyond the simple minimum of physical safety,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. 

California law only allows prosecutors to charge a misdemeanor when a detention facility employee engages in sexual activity with a confined adult over the clothes instead of skin to skin. Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer is seeking a change to state law to allow prosecutors to charge the behavior as a felony or a misdemeanor.

Deputy District Attorney David McMurrin of Special Prosecutions is prosecuting this case.

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