Police: Former cop had sex, videotaped underage girl

by: KIRO 7 STAFF Updated:

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A former Monroe police officer who investigators said had sex with an underage girl and secretly photographed her in the bathroom was charged this week with multiple counts of sexual misconduct.

Carlos Martinez, 58, was a sergeant until 2009. The sexual relationship with the girl began when she was 14 and lasted for nearly a decade, investigators said.

"Martinez used his position as a sergeant in the Monroe Police Department to manipulate (the victim) and the people she had the most contact with," State Patrol Detective William Steen wrote in an affidavit. "This included her family, friends, boyfriends, school counselors, and school officials. Carlos also abused his position to manipulate his co-workers, subordinates and the citizens he was entrusted to protect."

We found Martinez at his home Wednesday afternoon and asked it he was the kind of predator he once warned parents about. We'll show you his response on KIRO 7 Eyewitness News from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

The former officer convinced people he was helping a misguided child, investigators said. The girl told police Martinez began leading her into a relationship when she was in fifth grade.

"This relationship caused (the victim) to miss out on a normal childhood and forced her to lose relationships with her family and friends," Steen wrote. "The groomed and manipulated relationship caused (her) to have problems with diet, health and interpersonal skills with others."

The alleged crimes were discovered when the girl went to a Monroe Junior High counselor on two separate occasions to get advice. That counselor went to Child Protective Services.

"Monroe police officers and department officials knew of contact Carlos had with (the girl) and instructed him to not be involved with (the victim)," Steen wrote.

Martinez was part of Protect A Child Today, a Seattle-based organization with a mission to protect children from predators.

"It's that fine line between your children are getting older, you want them to spread their wings, you want them to start asserting their independence, but we're only doing half the job if you let your child do that without giving him the education and the skills to know how to protect himself," Martinez said in a video filmed while he was a sergeant. "And that's what Protect A Child Today does."

The case was forwarded to the State Patrol form Bexar County, Texas, and a search warrant was served in December 2011 at Martinez's San Antonio condominium. The warrant came after a complaint of physical abuse against Martinez by the young woman whom investigators said he preyed upon.

"Two recordings located during the Texas search warrant were on VHS tapes," according to the affidavit. They appeared to from cameras hidden in Martinez's bathroom, and the young woman told investigators one of the segments was taken when she was 15 years old.

 Martinez has been charged with child molestation, sexual exploitation of a minor and voyeurism. His case is ongoing.