Pro wrestler Matthew Castaneda met an opponent he could not defeat in May, when a jury convicted the Anaheim 35-year-old of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl
he met on MySpace.
Known in the ring as “Chippy Sanchez,” he'll next be grappling at a state prison, where a judge sent him today for 15 years to life.
Once Castaneda gets out, he'll have to inform his neighbors and police jurisdictions for a lifetime that he is a registered sex offender, which also keeps him out of Orange County parks and recreational areas covered by Child Safety Zones forbidding predators.
It was not a park but South Coast Plaza where Castaneda met the then-12-year-old from Santa Ana in person on Feb. 17, 2010, although they had been communicating online since the year before. They got on a bus bound for Anaheim and visited two parks before the grappler took her to Zaby's Motor Lodge at Harbor
Boulevard and Katella Avenue.
Castaneda sexually assaulted the girl and tried by force to get her to blow him in one of the Anaheim motel's rooms. He later left the room for about an hour, which allowed the girl to burst outside and flag down a uniformed Anaheim Police Civilian Traffic
Controller near Harbor and Katella that evening. She said she just wanted to go home.
By then, the girl had
been reported missing. After Anaheim Police turned her over to Santa Ana cops, she revealed what had happened in the motel room. The case was turned back over to the Anaheim agency, which had no trouble tracking down the attacker thanks to his online presence, unique appearance and specific-to-him tattoos. Castaneda was arrested at his warehouse job in Costa Mesa.
The case so alarmed Santa Ana that Assemblyman Jose Solorio (D-Santa Ana) mentioned it as he co-sponsored legislation that would prevent sexual predators from joining social media networks in California.
Top 10 Accused Perverts of 2010
Publicity of his arrest prompted readers to contact LA Weekly and OC Weekly to say Castaneda wrestled with World Power Wrestling as
“Chippy Sanchez,” the first name referring to his chipped front tooth and
scrappy way he worked the ring. The last name is presumably easier to say and remember for gringo fans.
The new deets for Castaneda's pro wrestling trading card: felony aggravated
sexual assault of a child, felony lewd acts on a child
under 14 and a sentencing enhancement for a conviction in 2007 for felony domestic violence and violating a restraining order.
Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.