30-year-old Paul Anthony Menchaca of Gilbert, Arizona, is facing 10 counts of abuse after he duped three separate women into giving him…unnecessary care. Menchaca used websites Carelinx.com and Care.com to hire the caregivers, posing as his own mother, “Amy,” in order to make his scheme seem more legitimate. The women reported they would received texts from his supposed mother instructing them on how to bathe him and change his diapers, but they never met her face-to-face.
In a probable cause statement obtained by CBS 5, “‘Amy’ asked all three victims to ‘punish’ [Menchaca] when he soiled his diaper by putting him in timeout and taking away his privileges. All three victims were paid in cash by [Menchaca] when they picked him up and dropped him off from neutral locations.” Every time the caregivers would visit Menchaca over the course of the most recent summer, he would pretend to have Down syndrome and feign incapability of grooming himself.
“He did ask me a few times to come over and help him shower, but I was incredibly uncomfortable with that. I felt disgusted and very uncomfortable,” said one of the caregivers who elected not to be named. “As a CNA I’m so drawn toward people who need help, vulnerable adults, somebody who can’t even make it to bathroom themselves.”
After a while, the caregivers began to voice their suspicions to each other about Manchaca’s supposed handicap, and their collective doubts started to snowball. They all shared experiences of Menchaca asking them to wash more meticulously in certain areas, especially below the belt, and would consequently become aroused. Then one day the first woman hired by Menchaca followed him back to his actual home after a session he had with another caregiver. She talked to his parents and found out that he didn’t need diapers, was perfectly able to care for himself, and didn’t have Down syndrome.
“He needed showers and grooming, he couldn’t use the bathroom himself, he couldn’t really be alone by himself. He acted like a child; his whole demeanor was childlike. He would act in tantrums, talk like a child, act like a child,” said another unnamed caregiver. “Why would you do that? Why would you make us change you knowing you didn’t have to. Why didn’t you give us a choice?”
Police say a man pretended to be his own mother online and hired caregivers to bathe him and change his diapers, telling the women he had Down syndrome. https://t.co/oHssTVYWuE— KDKA (@KDKA) September 17, 2018
After the three caregivers confronted Menchaca about his alleged disability, he admitted that he had made it all up. Shortly thereafter, he was arrested in his home on September 6 on charges of abuse and fraudulent schemes. All three victims then provided statements for his initial court appearance, with one in particular requesting a “substantial bond.”
“It has affected my work as well,” she said. “I’ve actually missed work for that, and I think that he should be held with either a substantial bond amount, or where he would not be released until the next court date, because I fear for my safety, in regards to that as well, as well as my family and friends, because I did bring my family and friends around him.”
This "sick man" tricked nurses so he could get bathed and someone to change his diapers— Wayne Dupree Media, LLC 🎧 (@WayneDupreeShow) September 19, 2018
Are you for reopening mental institutions? https://t.co/g4pyWDuSAb
As for the extent of Menchaca’s scheme, one of the caregivers reported changing diapers and giving baths at least 30 times at various locations around the Chandler and Gilbert areas. During his initial court appearance, Manchaca made a statement himself, against the recommendation of the commissioner.
“I just want to let you know I am special needs,” Menchaca said. “I do have a low IQ level. And…my mom and dad both have paperwork to prove that. And I’m starting to talk to my dad about getting me some help and getting me into a counselor and probably like a rehab center to talk to somebody.” His bond was set at $15,000 according to CBS 5.
What do you think Menchaca’s sentence should be? Is his supposed “low IQ” an excuse for any of his behavior? Do you agree with radio host Wayne Dupree and President Trump that the US should begin reopening mental institutions and asylums to deal with people like him? Let us know in the comments down below!