A man allegedly found inside a car with a teenager he met online pleaded not guilty Friday to a felony charge of committing lewd or lascivious acts with a minor.
Fernando Cancino, 26, of the desert city of Indio, was arrested Tuesday night, after sheriff’s deputies say they found him with the teen inside a car in the area of La Palma Drive and Arosa Way in the nearby city of La Quinta.
The felony charge specifies that the alleged victim was 14 or 15 years old. A criminal protective order filed Friday prohibits any contact between Cancino and the teen for three years.
According to sheriff’s Sgt. Alan Northrup, the two were found at 8:45 p.m. Tuesday by sheriff’s deputies who searched the vehicle and allegedly observed Cancino “engaging in lewd acts with the minor.”
The subsequent investigation revealed that Cancino met the youth through a social media website, according to the sergeant.
Cancino, who’s being held at the Riverside County jail in Indio in lieu of $10,000 bail pending a Dec. 28 felony settlement conference, has no prior felony convictions in Riverside County, according to court records.
— City News Service
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