Investigators have identified a third alleged victim of a Santa Ana man they say raped and molested three children over the past 21 years.
Javier Ortiz Pichardo, 45, faces up to 416 years in state prison if convicted of 24 felony sex crime charges, ranging from aggravated sexual assault on a child to forcible rape, the Orange County District Attorney's Office said in a written statement. Prosecutors filed the case Tuesday.
Santa Ana Police Department investigators arrested him last week on suspicion of years-long sexual abuse of a boy and a girl dating back to 1997.
Prosecutors since identified a third alleged victim, a girl who the suspect is accused of molesting in 2002. And they're asking anyone else who may have been victimized by the suspect to come forward.
Pichardo is charged with abusing the first victim between 1997 and 2001, the district attorney's office said. The victims are described in court documents as "John Doe," "Jane Doe 1" and "Jane Doe 2," to protect their identities.
"(He) is accused of befriending John Doe's family family at a Chinese restaurant, where the defendant was employed as a cook," the D.A.'s office statement said.
Authorities said the crimes took place in the restaurant's bathroom, at the victim's home and in the suspect's car. The boy was no older than 10 when the alleged abuse began. The family eventually fell out of contact with Pichardo.
"(Pichardo) is further accused of threatening to harm John Doe if he ever told someone about these acts," the statement said.
The investigation also found Pichardo sexually abused a young female relative starting in 2009, when she was 7 years old, Santa Ana police said in a written statement.
The most recent alleged attack was reported late last month, according to prosecutors. The girl was 7 years old when the crimes started.
And Pichardo is now charged with molesting another 9-year-old girl in 2002.
The investigation began recently when the alleged male victim, who is now an adult, spotted Pichardo at a McDonald's restaurant, police said. The man got the suspect's license plate number and called the police.
Pichardo is scheduled to return to appear in court for an arraignment hearing Sept. 21, county booking records show. Bail has been set at $1 million.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact Santa Ana police Detective Jessica Guidry at 714-245-8530, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tips may also be submitted to Orange County Crime Stoppers at 855-847-6227.