Gregory Daniel Beaumarchais has been charged with one misdemeanor count of annoying or molesting a victim believed to be under 18. According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, he turned himself in on Tuesday. Beaumarchais has been with the Santa Ana Police Department since 2011 and has been on administrative leave.
“Today’s filing of criminal charges for showing sexual interest in children shows no one is above the law when it comes to keeping communities free from predators,” said Shawn Gibson from Homeland Security’s Los Angeles branch.
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Police say a civilian, posing as a 14-year-old girl, contacted Orange County Crime Stoppers after they say they received inappropriate messages from a man claiming to be a 45-year-old police officer. The alleged messages were sent via social media between December 2021 and January 2022 according to officials. After the tip was submitted, the social media site deactivated Beaumarchais’ account, police say, but he later allegedly created a new account with a similar handle.
“Police officers are entrusted with the sacred responsibility to safeguard society from harm,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer. “It is beyond disturbing that a sworn police officer would engage in inappropriate conversations with someone he believed to be a child. Our children should not have to worry about being preyed upon by the very people we teach them who are there to protect them.”
Beaumarchais faces a maximum sentence of one year in county jail if convicted, and would have to register as a sex offender.