2 Murrieta Boys, Both 17, Charged With Sex Crimes After School Investigation

Two 17-year-old Murrieta high school students have been arrested following a sexual assault investigation involving six alleged victims, authorities said Monday.

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File photo of Vista Murrieta High School (credit: Murrieta Valley Unified School District)

Both boys are students at Vista Murrieta High School, as are most of the alleged victims, according to Murrieta police.

One boy faces eight counts — including two of rape by force or fear — involving six female alleged victims, according to the Riverside County District Attorney’s Office.

The other has been charged with “sex-related crimes.” Only his name and age and the general description of the charges against him could be made public, DA’s office spokesman John Hall said.

The names of the two minor suspects are public because of the nature of the crimes they were charged with Monday, Hall said, but KTLA is not identifying them because they are minors.

Only the first boy’s initial hearing — set for Tuesday morning at the Southwest Justice Center — is open to the public because of restrictions in the law related to the prosecution of juveniles, Hall said. The other’s boy’s hearing is closed, and the DA’s office cannot provide further details, Hall said.

According to Hall, the first boy is charged with: two counts of rape by force or fear in alleged crimes against two separate victims; two counts of lewd and lascivious acts upon a child under the age of 14, involving a third victim; three counts of false imprisonment involving three additional alleged victims; and one count of dissuading a witness who is one of the alleged rape victims.

All of the six alleged victims are underage, Murrieta Police Department Lt. Tony Conrad said.

All alleged crimes occurred off campus, Conrad said. They took place between 2012 and August 2013, Hall said.

“All suspects in this investigation have been contacted by detectives and arrested,” stated a news release from Murrieta police issued Sept. 12.

An investigation that began with a school resource officer on Aug. 29 and was transferred to the Murrieta Police Department’s investigative unit on Sept. 3, according to the news release.

The two boys were arrested Sept. 12 and booked at Southwest Juvenile Hall on suspicion of rape, police said.  The case was then handed over to the DA’s office for prosecution; the boys were charged Monday.

Vista Murrieta High has about 3,300 students, according to state online education records.

Located about 80 miles southeast of Los Angeles, Murrieta is a suburban city of about 107,000, according to census data.

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