Orange County’s Johnny Lewis Sears, Jr. made a boneheaded, life-altering mistake by placing a hidden video device in his Irvine bedroom that recorded him committing sex crimes against a girlfriend, if law enforcement officers are right.
Sears compounded his plight by taking a 2017 flight from Los Angeles International Airport to Mexico City after a stop in Houston when he was on the verge of being tossed inside the Orange County Jail for a year incarceration sentence.
Now, Sears, a fugitive, faces more than three years in state prison plus a federal flight charge.
In Sept. 2014, his victim told the Irvine Police Department that he threw her on his bed, digitally penetrated her without consent and posted nude photos of her on the internet.
Sears pleaded guilty to felony and misdemeanor crimes of making criminal threats and disorderly conduct three years later but then left the country.
Now inside the Ronald Reagan Federal Courthouse in Santa Ana, FBI agents have filed a pending federal charge against him for fleeing.
Agents believe Sears might be hiding in Amsterdam or other places in Europe.
Officials in the Orange County district attorney’s office say their agency will pay for Sears’ extradition if he is captured.
R. Scott Moxley’s award-winning investigative journalism has touched nerves for two decades. An angry congressman threatened to break Moxley’s knee caps. A dirty sheriff promised his critical reporting was irrelevant and then landed in prison. The U.S. House of Representatives debated his work. Federal prosecutors credited his stories for the arrest of a doctor who sold fake medicine to dying patients. Moxley has won Journalist of the Year honors at the Los Angeles Press Club; been named Distinguished Journalist of the Year by the LA Society of Professional Journalists; and hailed by two New York Times Magazine writers for his “herculean job” exposing Southern California law enforcement corruption.