A 25-year-old man was booked on suspicion of lewd acts with minor

Joshua Meza

Joshua Meza

LA QUINTA — Joshua Meza, 25, of Corona was booked at the John J. Benoit Detention Center on suspicion of lewd acts with a minor, contacting a minor with the intent to commit a sex crime and possession of a firearm on school grounds, Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy David Aldrich said.

The arrest stems from an incident on May 18.  At 12:36 a.m., Thermal Sheriff’s Station deputies responded to the 78800 block of Avenue 50, in La Quinta, regarding a 12-year-old juvenile who fled the location with an adult male. School employees were able to obtain a plate for the suspect’s vehicle, which they provided deputies. The Thermal Station Special Investigations Unit assumed the investigation.

At 2:14 p.m., while canvassing the area, the suspect vehicle was located returning to the location. The suspect was taken into custody without incident, and the juvenile was returned to her parents. The investigation determined the juvenile was communicating with the suspect via social media. The victim did not sustain any injuries during the incident.

During a search of Meza’s vehicle, a firearm was located and seized.

The Thermal Station Special Investigations Unit is asking anyone with additional information to contact Investigator Bugarin at (760) 863-2585. If you wish to remain anonymous, call Valley Crimestoppers at (760) 341-7867.

Image Sources

  • Joshua Meza: RSO
  • Police car with flashing lights: Pexels