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Two Deputies, One Civilian, Charged In Ride-Along Teenager Sex Scandal

Photo by Chuck "Caveman" Coker via LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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Two San Bernardino County Sheriff's deputies have been charged with a variety of sexual crimes involving teenage participants of the ride-along "Explorer" program. On Friday, the San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office filed charges on against 31-year-old Nathan Gastineau, a former deputy accused of having sex with a 16-year-old girl. He was charged with three counts of lewd acts upon a child and three counts of unlawful sexual intercourse, according to KTLA.

27-year-old Jason Anguiano, who is not a Sheriff's deputy, was also arrested, just days after Gastineau in April, for allegedly having sex with the same 16-year-old girl. Charges were also filed against Anguiano on Friday. He is charged with two counts of sexual penetration with a foreign object and one count of unlawful sexual intercourse. Both men and are out of jail having posted $25,000 bail. Gastineau will be arraigned in San Bernardino Superior Court. on June 27, Anguiano will be arraigned June 28.

Gastineau was the first of two San Bernardino County Sheriff's deputies to be accused within a two-week period of having sexual contact with underage "Explorers." 30-year-old Anthony Benjamin, a deputy in Victorville, was arrested in early May and "accused of conducting sex acts with a 17-year-old girl during ride-alongs in his patrol car." Benjamin was charged Thursday with two counts of oral copulation with a person under 18 and is out on bail. He will be arraigned July 6 in Victorville Superior Court.

The department's "Explorer" ride-along program has been suspended pending a review per San Bernardino County Sheriff Rod Hoops. Gastineau is no longer employed by the department. Benjamin is on paid administrative leave.