Murrieta Police Detectives arrested a subject accused of various crimes related to an alleged inappropriate sexual relationship with a minor Feb. 16. According to Murrieta Police Detective Sergeant Phil Gomez, the man was having a sexual relationship with a young girl who was under 15-years-old.
“The relationship began in December 2015 and lasted through January 2016,” Gomez said. “The victim’s parents discovered the relationship after they reviewed an “app” on the victim’s cellphone.
Gomez explained, “A ‘KIK’ app is used to share messages and photographs with others who have the same app. The messages or photos are stored within the app only and do not show up under the phones normal messages or in the photo area. There is also no phone company record because the communication is contained within the app only.”
Detectives conducted an investigation, during which they identified Stephen Alexander Jackson, 22, of Murrieta, as the person allegedly involved in the incidents. At the conclusion of their investigation, officials arrested Jackson at the Murrieta Town Square after he had pre-arranged to willingly turn himself over to authorities. He was arrested without incident at 2:45 p.m., according to Gomez.
Jackson was booked at Southwest Detention Center for two counts of oral copulation with a suspect who is over 21 years old and a victim who is under 16 years old, communication with minor to commit oral copulation and sexual penetration with a minor, annoying or molesting a minor, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and furnishing alcohol to a minor.
An official court records search conducted Feb. 18, indicated Jackson was seen in court this morning. Records showed of the crimes Murrieta PD officials charged Jackson with, the district attorney’s office chose not to file more than half of those charges against him. Superior Court records revealed the DA’s office only proceeded with the three of the more serious offenses, including two counts of sexual penetration with foreign object when suspect is over 21 years old and victim is under 16 years old and one count of oral copulation.
Court records indicated a confidential criminal order for protection was filed against him and his arraignment was postponed until March 25, at 8:30 a.m. at the Southwest Detention Center. Jackson remains in jail in lieu of $5,000 bail.
Two days following Jackson’s arrest, Gomez praised the parents, saying, “In this case, had the parents not taken the time to inspect the victim’s phone and this app specifically, these crimes may have never come to light.”
Gomez talked about the importance of parents being involved in their children’s lives. “By sharing information about this arrest, we hope that other parents will be cognizant and be diligent to check their children’s cellphones. There are so many different applications out there now that can easily hide messages and photographs. There could be things their kids are into that the parents might not ever know about unless the parents actually take the time to search.”
Anyone with information about Jackson regarding this investigation is encouraged to call Detective John Therein at (951) 461-6346 or Detective Sergeant Phil Gomez at (951) 461-6356. Callers can remain anonymous. Tipsters can also provide information anonymously through “We Tip” at 1-800-78-CRIME.