Investigators say an Orange County man accused of luring young sexual assault victims used computer skills to elude police. Vikki Vargas reports from Cypress for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 17, 2014.
A Cypress man was arrested Thursday for allegedly attempting to meet underage girls online for sex, authorities said.
Michael Theodore Mordaunt, 45, was arrested away from his home on the 5900 Block of Cathy Avenue after a months-long investigation by the Cypress and Garden Grove Police Departments, officials said in a press release.
After Mordaunt was arrested, a search warrant was served for his home and a location in Seal Beach where he works as an IT professional, said Lt. Ben Stauffer with the Garden Grove Police department.
"There are kids up and down this street all the time," neighbor Shonna Smith said. "It's shocking, really."
Authorities said analysts from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s and Homeland Security assisted in the investigation by scanning Mordaunt’s electronics for child pornography and attempts by the suspect to lure young girls over the Internet, including on Facebook, for sex.
Soo Kim lives across the street and describes Mordaunt as a good father who could be seen gardening in the front yard with his son.
"I'm really shocked, because he has a daughter, a good, pretty daughter," Kim said.
Police are now wondering if others will come forward.
"Perhaps looking back on your conversations that you've had on social networks, you start realize to realize, you know, 'Maybe this was this guy trying to get me to meet with him for a sexual rendezvous.'"
Police said they were able to identify and arrest Mordaunt with the help of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office and the Orange County Child Exploitation task force, which includes both county and federal law enforcement officials.
The suspect was booked on a charge of child annoyance at the Orange County Jail. The Orange County District Attorney’s Office is currently deciding how to prosecute the case, officials said.
Police said they are looking for more victims of the suspect and urge the public to call 714-741-5836 if they have any information regarding the suspect or the case.