GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — A Georgetown police officer and his wife are facing felony charges after being accused of recording a 17-year-old girl during sex.
Georgetown police said Samuel Tejeda, 28, and his wife Ashley Tejeda turned themselves in Wednesday Feb. 3 after the Georgetown Police Department and the Texas Rangers began investigating.
During their investigation, police uncovered a sexual relationship between the Tejedas and a 17-year-old related to Samuel’s coworker, according to an affidavit. Police said the crime the officer is accused of happened while he was off duty.
KXAN is working to reach out to the Tejedas for comment. An attorney was not listed online for either of the Tejedas.
Police said they first became aware of the situation on Jan. 26 of this year. Following an immediate criminal investigation, on Jan. 27, Samuel was placed on administrative leave, Georgetown police said. Arrest warrants were issued Feb. 2 and he and his wife now each face two counts of sexual performance by a child charges, which are second-degree felonies.
The arrest affidavits stated the 17-year-old girl told police she had sex multiple times with Samuel in her backyard and at the couple’s home in Jarrell. A defense attorney unrelated to the case told KXAN the age of consent in Texas is 17, according to Texas Penal Code.
“If a child engages in this activity, and she is younger than 17, than that is what’s known as statutory rape,” said Defense Attorney Charlie Baird.
Instead, in this case, the Tejedas face felony charges for sexual performance of a child.
“If you are making a movie, a video or something of that nature, then that is what’s known as sexual performance. The age threshold for that to be legal in Texas is 18,” said Baird.
The affidavit said a Texas Ranger interviewed Ashley, who admitted to having a sexual relationship with the 17-year-old girl and her husband. She also told the investigator she recorded one of their sexual encounters on her phone, the affidavit said. However, the court document stated Ashley said she “deleted the content of the video from her phone on the day that Samuel was informed of pending criminal action against him.”
During a search at the Tejedas’ home Jan. 29, the affidavit stated “several electronic devices were located and seized along with an intentionally damaged hard drive believed to belong to a computer system.”
Special investigators with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services are helping with the investigation, the agency confirmed to KXAN Wednesday:
“Our investigators will meet with parents, children and relatives to assess the safety of all children involved and ensure all of their needs are met. We do not have any information on legal actions taken by the agency at this time.”
Samuel graduated from the police academy in January 2017 and worked as a reserve officer in Jarrell before working for the Georgetown Police Department.
He’s been with the Georgetown Police Department since March 2018, and did not have any record of prior discipline with the Georgetown Police Department.
Baird says the prosecuting attorneys in this case hold a strong one.
“I think this is especially damming against them, because the individual was in fact a law enforcement officer,” said Baird. “That makes it more difficult from a criminal defense standpoint.”