Lehi Police arrested four different men Thursday in Utah County after the men allegedly texted what they thought were 13-year-old girls and asked them for sex. Undercover officers working with an FBI sting operation were the ones behind the text messages.
Police arrested Alexander Julianni Sanchez, 20, of Orem; Matthew Thomas Woodward, 29, of Salem; Chen Yang, 31, of Salt Lake City; and Abraham Blair Fitch, 39, of Kaysville. All four men were booked into Utah County Jail on counts of enticing a minor by internet or text, a second-degree felony.
Sanchez chatted with an FBI agent he believed to be a 13-year-old girl via an unnamed social media app. According to court documents, Sanchez arranged for the girl to be picked up via Uber and brought to his apartment for sex. Court documents state Sanchez told police in an interview Thursday he intended to have sex with the 13-year-old girl.
Sanchez is booked in jail on suspicion of a single count of enticing a minor by internet or text, a second-degree felony, with bail set at $20,000.
According to the police report, Woodward engaged in two online conversations on a social media app with what he believed were two 13-year-old girls. Court documents state Woodward immediately engaged in a sexual conversation with one of the 13-year-olds, eventually arranging to meet with her for sex.
According to court documents, Woodward also attempted to solicit nude photos multiple times from the girl, and said he planned to come by her home to have sex while her parents were away.
In the other conversation with what he believed to be a different 13-year-old girl, court documents state Woodward made "multiple sexual advances" and made arrangements to meet the girl at his work, where he said he would close his store and they could have sex. According to court documents, Woodward started the second conversation because the first girl he spoke with would not send him nude photos.
Court documents state Woodward explained the sexual act he intended to perform with the girl in his store in graphic detail, and also requested nude pictures multiple times. According to court documents, Woodward directed the girl to go to a gas station near his shop in Lehi where they could meet.
Police took Woodward into custody at his place of business, after which he said he understood both girls were underage and admitted to making arrangements to meet both girls for sex, as well as trying to solicit explicit photos of them.
According to court documents, Woodward told police he would have deleted the messages and not met with the girls if they had sent nude photos.
Woodward was booked into jail on suspicion of two counts of enticing a minor by internet or text and two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, all of which are second-degree felonies. His bail is set at $80,000.
According to court documents, Yang began texting what he believed was a 13-year-old girl and right away asked for a photo of her, and told her he could teach her "sex skills." Court documents state Yang asked several inappropriate questions about the girl's body, and asked her to perform sexual favors.
According to court documents, Yang gave the girl directions on how to prepare for their encounter. He also reportedly spoke on the phone with a woman he thought was the 13-year-old girl while an FBI agent recorded and observed the call.
Court documents state the officer posing as the 13-year-old girl gave Yang an address near the Cabela's recreation store in Lehi to meet at. According to court documents, officers obtained Yang's address and license plate information, and apprehended Yang when he arrived at Cabela's.
Police took Yang to the Lehi Police Station to be interviewed. Court documents state Yang was "emotional and upset," and the arresting officer used a translating app to provide Yang with both English and Mandarin text of his Miranda Rights.
According to court documents, Yang admitted to police that he had purchased condoms before the planned encounter, that he knew the girl was only 13 years old, and that he had asked her questions about her body. Yang was booked on suspicion of counts of sexual exploitation of a minor and enticing a minor by internet or text, both second-degree felonies, as well as counts of sodomy on a child and rape of a child, both first-degree felonies, with no bail.
Fitch was arrested and booked on counts of sexual exploitation of a minor and enticing a minor by internet or text after he responded to an ad posted by an FBI agent posing as a 13-year-old girl. According to court documents, Fitch contacted the agent and talked about engaging in sexual activity with what Fitch believed was a 13-year-old girl. Court documents state Fitch asked for nude images of the girl and arranged to meet her after 9 p.m. Thursday in Lehi for a sexual encounter. Fitch's bail is set at $20,000.