Advertisement
California

Man admits to committing a sex crime against a 12-year-old girl he met on Tinder

la-1562859048-731kduweb0-snap-image
Sean Rickard, 22, was sentenced to 16 months in jail after pleading guilty to unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor.
(Santa Ana Police Department)

An Orange County man who admitted committing a sex crime against a 12-year-old girl he met on the Tinder dating app will spend more than a year behind bars, court records show.

Sean Rickard, 22, of Anaheim pleaded guilty Wednesday to unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor and was immediately sentenced to 16 months in county jail.

As part of a plea deal, prosecutors dismissed three counts of lewd acts with a minor younger than 14 and one count each of distributing pornography to a minor with the intent to engage in sexual conduct and luring a child with the intent to commit a crime, according to Orange County Superior Court records.

The girl told police she had posed as a 19-year-old woman on the app when she began talking to Rickard roughly a year ago. A few weeks before Rickard’s arrest, the girl told police she admitted to him that she was only 12. Santa Ana police say that didn’t dissuade Rickard from meeting her, though.

Advertisement

Rickard picked up the girl and took her to a parking lot in Santa Ana, where the sexual activity occurred. The preteen reported the incident two days later to police.

After learning that Rickard had used Snapchat to communicate with the girl, detectives posed as her and began chatting through the app. Authorities said Rickard thought he was communicating with the girl and unknowingly sent a video to detectives of himself masturbating.

He also made plans to meet the girl later that night “for the purposes of engaging in sexual activity,” authorities wrote in a news release at the time. Detectives set up a sting operation at a clothing store in Anaheim in February and arrested Rickard after he pulled into the parking lot.

hannah.fry@latimes.com

Advertisement

Twitter: @Hannahnfry


Newsletter
Get our Essential California newsletter
Advertisement