RIVERSIDE – A former Moreno Valley High School football team assistant, who’s accused of soliciting girls for sex and possessing child pornography, pleaded not guilty today to felony charges.
Manuel Eluid Leyva, 19, was arrested Jan. 31 after a Riverside County sheriff’s investigation that concluded the defendant allegedly made illicit requests of several juvenile girls.
He’s charged with two counts of communicating with a minor for the purpose of committing a sexual offense and one count of possessing child porn.
Leyva appeared before Riverside County Superior Court Judge Helios Hernandez, who set a March 17 felony settlement conference. The defendant is free on a $30,000 bond.
According to sheriff’s officials, a deputy assigned to security at Moreno Valley High School was informed in January about encounters Leyva had with teenage girls, during which he allegedly offered to pay them for sex.
The defendant had been working as a part-time athletics assistant, helping out the varsity football team, sheriff’s officials said. He stopped working for the Moreno Valley Unified School District last year, and none of the alleged offenses occurred on campus, according to sheriff’s Sgt. Joel Morales.
”Investigators believe there are additional victims,” Morales said earlier. ”He used social media to communicate and meet minors.”
After he was contacted and informed about the allegations, Leyva turned himself in at the sheriff’s Moreno Valley station.
Anyone with information about the case was urged to call sheriff’s investigators at (951) 486-6700.