El Mirage police: Luis Lopez-Mendoza, from Guatemala, allegedly molests pre-teen

Posted at 2:33 PM, Dec 12, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-12 16:33:32-05

Authorities say a man has been arrested after parents found he had been communicating with their pre-teen daughter.

Court records show that the parents contacted El Mirage police on December 1, after finding the sexually explicit messages on their daughter's phone. They reported to police that the suspect, 27-year-old Luis Miguel Lopez-Mendoza, is an acquaintance of the family. 

Police say the majority of the text messages were about arranging when the two would meet, but some were sexually explicit photos. Police say the two started meeting in July when Mendoza molested the girl in the backyard of her home.

Mendoza reportedly admitted to police that he knew the girl was a pre-teen but thought of her as a girlfriend. He also allegedly said he had sex with the girl ten times, the last time in mid-November.

Mendoza is an undocumented person from Guatemala, authorities said. He's been charged with child molestation and sexual conduct with a minor.