O.C. Man Charged With Rape, Unlawful Intercourse in Sex Crimes Case Involving 4 Minor Victims: DA

A La Palma man is facing eight felony counts in connection with a series of sex crimes over the past three years against four underage girls, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Matthew Michael Taylor, 21, was arraigned Tuesday on charges that include multiple counts of rape and unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor after being arrested last Friday, the Orange County District Attorney’s Office said in a news release.

The first incident Taylor is accused in occurred in August 2015, when he allegedly forcibly raped and sodomized a 17-year-old girl he met online. He’s also accused of sexually assaulting the same victim again the following August, when she was 18, officials said.

The defendant is also accused of having unlawful sexual intercourse with a 14-year-old girl in the fall of 2017.

The most recent incident occurred this March, when Taylor allegedly had unlawful sexual intercourse with a 16-year-old then forcibly raped a 15-year-old.

The 15-year-old told a relative about the assault, and that person contacted police, prosecutors said.

Tustin police and O.C. sheriff’s officials investigate the case, and Taylor was formally charged last Thursday, one day before he was taken into custody.

His charges include two counts of forcible rape, two counts of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor and one count each of unlawful sexual intercourse, sexual penetration by a foreign object, forcible oral copulation and sodomy by force, the DA’s office said.

Prosecutors are also seeking a sentencing enhancement based on the claim that he had multiple victims.

If convicted as charged, Taylor could face a maximum possible sentence of 15 years to life in state prison, officials said.

The defendant was being held on $1 million bail and scheduled to return to court for a pre-trial hearing next Monday, Nov. 26.