A 30-year-old man from Gilbert, Ariz., is facing felony fraud and sex abuse charges after he pretended to have a genetic condition and paid caregivers to change his diaper and help him bathe.
Paul Anthony Menchaca, 30, approached his alleged victims on CareLinx.com, police told Phoenix TV station KSAZ. The website is dedicated to connecting families and caregivers and aims to manage administrative tasks such as scheduling, time tracking, care coordination, and payroll processing. On the site, Menchaca posed as “Amy,” who was searching for caregivers to care for her son, who had Down syndrome, to change his diaper and to bathe him regularly, police said.
Three caregivers fell for the mother persona and agreed to tend to Menchaca, the station reported. Police documents obtained by the TV station show that the women initially became suspicious when Menchaca would aggressively state he needed to be cleaned better in certain areas, such as his genitals.
The court documents show that the first caregiver recalled five separate incidents when Menchaca “aggressively said his genitals were not clean enough.” A second victim was referred by the first in July, and then a third was referred by the first two in August. They all agreed to be paid by “Amy.” According to Phoenix ABC station KNXV-TV, all three of the victims knew each other and reported that Menchaca became aroused when he was bathed.
“’Amy’ asked all three victims to ‘punish’ [Menchaca] when he soiled his diaper by putting him in timeout and taking away his privileges,” according to the probable cause for arrest statement. “All three victims were paid in cash by [Menchaca] when they picked him up and dropped him off from neutral locations.”
Police told KSAZ that the first caregiver became suspicious of Menchaca and then followed him home from where she had dropped him off. After knocking on the door, Menchaca’s mother and father answered and the caregiver learned that he did not have Down syndrome.
“[The victim] was greeted by [Menchaca’s] actual mother and father and discovered [Menchaca] did not have Down syndrome and did not require diaper changes,” the probable cause statement read.
“I do have a low IQ level,” Menchaca said in court. “My mom and dad both have paperwork to prove that, and I’ve started to talk to my dad about getting me some help, and getting me a counselor.”
Menchaca listed his employment as a school crossing guard, KNXV-TV reported.
Menchaca has no criminal history and is due back in court for a preliminary hearing on Sept. 17.
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