An Arizona man conned caregivers into providing sexual gratification for him, telling them that he had Down syndrome and needed assistance with bathing and going to the bathroom, authorities said.
Authorities said Paul Anthony Menchaca posed as his own mother online and told potential caregivers that he (she) needed help with his (her) special-needs son.
Between January and September, police said, the 31-year-old hired at least three caregivers, all of them women, to bathe him and change his diapers. The caregivers later told police that when they performed the tasks, Menchaca was sexually aroused, Sgt. Darrell Krueger, a spokesman for the Gilbert Police Department, told The Washington Post. In some cases, Krueger said, Menchaca would ask them to “clean it better.”
“It was more or less to trick them into giving him sexual gratification,” Krueger said.
Menchaca was arrested last week and charged with 10 counts of sexual abuse and three counts of fraudulent schemes, police said. He is being held without bond.
It was not immediately clear Friday whether Menchaca has an attorney.
Court documents show that Menchaca, of Gilbert, Ariz., near Phoenix, posted an advertisement on the home-care website CareLinx.com under the name “Amy,” claiming that Amy had a then-30-year-old son who needed special assistance. Krueger, with the Gilbert Police Department, said that Menchaca lives with his parents but added that his parents did not seem to be aware that their son was running such a scheme.
Krueger said that Menchaca would sometimes have the caregivers meet him at restaurants or coffee shops and then change his dirty diapers in public restrooms.
One caregiver told investigators that she cared for Menchaca about 30 times, bathing him and changing his diaper — and each time he had an erection, according to a probable cause statement. The caregiver said there were several instances in which Menchaca “aggressively” said he was not clean enough, forcing her to continue touching him, according to the court records.
Two other caregivers gave similar statements.
The caregivers also said that “Amy” had texted them and told them to “punish” Menchaca when he went to the bathroom in his diaper, by “putting him in timeout and taking away his privileges,” according to the court documents.
Eventually, the first caregiver became suspicious, according to the court documents. The documents state that the three women, who all knew each other, had been communicating with “Amy” only through text messages and were receiving payments through their smartphones.
So earlier this month, she followed him home, knocked on the door and met his parents.
The caregiver discovered that Menchaca “did not have Down syndrome and did not require diaper changes,” according to the probable cause statement. It stated that the women later confronted Menchaca and that he “admitted to lying to them about his mental condition.”
Authorities said Menchaca’s parents confirmed to investigators that their son does not have Down syndrome and does not require special assistance.
In court, Menchaca claimed that he has “a low IQ level.”
“My mom and dad both have paperwork to prove that, and started to talk to my dad about getting me some help, and getting me a counselor,” he told the judge, according to Fox affiliate KSAZ.
After the allegations, investigators searched Menchaca’s bedroom at his parents' home and found his cellphone, computers and other electronic devices that had apparently been used to create accounts online, according to the court records.
They also found diapers.