MURRIETA (CNS) – A 27-year-old man accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting a Lake Elsinore girl pleaded not guilty Thursday, Nov. 19 to multiple counts of lewd acts on a child.
Geovanni Arturo Mendoza was arrested last Saturday following a monthlong Riverside County Sheriff’s Department investigation.
Along with four counts of lewd acts on a child under 14 years old, Mendoza is charged with distributing pornography to a minor.
He was arraigned before Superior Court Judge Stephen Gallon, who scheduled a felony settlement conference for Dec. 3 at the Southwest Justice Center in Murrieta.
The defendant is being held in lieu of $1 million bail at the Byrd Detention Center.
In early October, the girl and her family alleged that the defendant had sexually abused her on numerous occasions going back to January 2012, according to sheriff’s Sgt. Julio Olguin. The alleged offenses were mostly perpetrated at a residence in the 18000 block of Tereticornis Avenue, near 11th Street, he said.
Detectives initiated an investigation that uncovered sufficient evidence to warrant charges against the defendant, who was taken into custody without incident in Lake Elsinore, according to the sergeant. No details regarding the alleged acts or Mendoza’s connection to the victim were disclosed.
He has no documented prior felony convictions in Riverside County.