AUSTIN (KXAN) — A 47-year-old man was arrested last week after police said he failed to register in the sex offender database, and officers said he was caught in the midst of a sexual act with a child outside a south Austin building.
According to the Austin Police Department, Ronald Christopher Martin was seen by an officer who was out on a separate call near a former shoe store located at 5001 W. U.S. 290. The officer said around 9:43 p.m. Dec. 27, he saw Martin with a juvenile, later identified to be 14 years old.
Investigators said he met the victim on social media and went to another state to pick him up and come back to Austin. The victim told police Martin solicited nude photos from him, despite being aware of his age.
KXAN reached out to Martin’s attorney for comment and will update this story when we receive a response.
Martin is reported to be homeless, investigators said. A person who lived near the tent said Martin had lived in the back of the building where police found him for at least a year and a half. The acquaintance told police the child had been there for around one or two weeks.
During the incident, the officer reports he found an active warrant for failure to register as a sex offender that was issued in 2017. An affidavit in that case said Martin had been convicted in two aggravated sexual assault of a child cases in Grayson County, Texas in 2005 and was required to register as a sex offender.
In Texas, a person who has been convicted of two or more sexually violent offenses, who has received a deferred adjudication order two or more times or who has been convicted and received an order of deferred adjudication must report their information to their local law enforcement every 90 days. Failure to do so can result in a “fail to comply sex offender duty to register life/90 day” charge, which is one of the charges Martin faces.
According to the 2017 affidavit, Martin had first registered with APD in 2015. During his 2016 appointments, he updated his information to say he was at a group home, but police said they discovered in early 2017 he hadn’t lived there in more than a year. The failure to register a new address prompted a judge to issue a warrant on the failure to register charge, according to court documents.