GILBERT, Ariz. – Police in Arizona say a man pretended to have Down syndrome in order to trick caregivers into giving him baths and changing his diapers.
Paul Anthony Menchaca, 31, was arrested September 6.
Investigators said Menchaca posed as a woman named Amy looking for caregivers to bathe and change the diapers of her son with special needs. Menchaca used the fake persona to hire at least three caregivers on apps like Carelinx and Care.com, police said.
One victim told police she assisted Menchaca with diaper changes and baths on 30 occasions at various locations over the summer. Two more victims began caregiving duties in July, according to investigators. All three victims told police that Menchaca would become sexually aroused while being bathed.
"He acted like a child. His whole demeanor was childlike minded, so he would have tantrums. He would talk like a child. He would act like a child," one caregiver told KNXV. "He would just be clapping. He would be smiling and he would be talking to us when were were changing his diaper."
The victim said she thinks it was a fetish for him.
"He did ask me a few times to come over and help him shower, but I was incredibly uncomfortable with that," said another caregiver who was told Menchaca had a traumatic brain injury. "I'm glad I never showered him, and he's going to get what he deserves for fooling everybody like this."
One victim eventually became suspicious of Menchaca and followed him to his actual home, where she knocked on the door, according to a police report. The woman was reportedly greeted by Menchaca's parents, who confirmed that their son did not have Down syndrome.
KNXV reports that Menchaca listed his employment as a school crossing guard. The school district said he resigned on August 31.
Menchaca is facing charges related to sexual abuse and fraudulent schemes. He is scheduled to be back in court on September 17.
Watch KNXV's report below: