MARTINEZ, Calif. – A Martinez man who is a former Lamorinda soccer club coach is facing several charges in connection with an attempt in January to approach an underage girl for sex, the Contra Costa County State Attorney’s Office announced Thursday.
Alejandro Sanchez, 28, was arrested in January by district attorney investigators who said they uncovered the activity while conducting an undercover sex sting.
After his arrest, the soccer club where he had worked since 2015 placed him on leave.
A spokesperson for the club said at the time of the arrest that Sanchez had cleared background checks prior to his employment and that the organization had received no complaints about the coach.
According to Thursday’s announcement by the district attorney’s office, investigators believe Sanchez was attempting to meet an underaged girl through an online chat room.
The statement said investigators believe the man they identified as Sanchez began communicating with an undercover law enforcement officer who was posing as a 14-year-old girl with whom he wanted to have sex.
The statement said that during the undercover operation, the man complimented the girl with whom he thought he was speaking, telling her, “We need to cuddle then,” and “You have a nice body.”
The man repeated remarks about the presumed minor about her physical appearance and said he wanted to engage in sexual acts with her, the announcement said.
During the undercover operation, the officer posing as the underaged girl “made it clear to Sanchez that she was a high school student in the ninth grade. Even after that disclosure, Sanchez still expressed a desire to meet in person,” the statement said.
“After the pair chatted for one day, they agreed to meet in person,” the statement said. That meeting was to take place Jan. 4 at a Martinez park. Senior inspectors with the district attorneys office went to the park. The man identified as Sanchez then was taken into custody.
He faces three felony charges: Contact with a minor for sexual offense, arranging a meeting with a minor for lewd purposes and attempted lewd act upon a child.
The statement said the investigation was conducted by the multiple-agency Crimes Against Children Task Force, managed by the San Jose Police Department. In Contra Costa County, participants are detectives and investigators from police departments from Walnut Creek, San Ramon, Concord, Moraga and Martinez, Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Office, the United States Secret Service, Homeland Security Investigations, Contra Costa County Probation Department and the district attorney’s office.
The statement recommended parents speak to their children about online safety, and referred them to www.kidsmartz.org and http://www.co.contra-costa.ca.us/6990/Community-Outreach-Engagement.