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‘O.C. flasher’ pleads guilty to 27 counts of indecent exposure; May Get 10 Years

Once again the name fits the crime.

SANTA ANA – from – A Mission Viejo man dubbed “the O.C. flasher” pleaded guilty today to 27 counts of indecent exposure.

Christopher Holden Fenn, 46, now expects to receive a 10-year term in prison at his sentencing Dec. 4 by Superior Court Judge James A. Stotler.

Deputy District Attorney Robert Mestman said Fenn is the man police dubbed “the O.C. flasher” after dozens of victims – mostly women – reported that they were exposed to a mostly naked man beginning in July 2005.

Detectives said the flasher exposed himself to women near hiking trails and parking complexes wearing only a towel or shirt wrapped around his head.

Fenn, an insurance underwriter and the father of four, was arrested in February 2008 when Michael Palacio, 39, of Tustin, spotted him naked and peering into a window of a woman’s apartment in Tustin.

Palacio chased Fenn and cornered him 10 minutes later in the parking lot of a grocery store and held him for police. At the time, Fenn begged, “Please let me go. I have a wife and kids,” Palacio told a Register reporter.

Fenn also pleaded guilty today to a felony assault charge for throwing a brick at Palacio during the pursuit.

Authorities said later that they believe Fenn may have exposed himself to as many as 91 people in Aliso Viejo, Dana Point, Irvine, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, Tustin and Rancho Santa Margarita.

Detectives learned later by searching Fenn’s computer files that he would often search online for police reports or newspaper accounts of his flashing episodes, Mestman said. The search revealed that Fenn would use the search terms “naked guy” and a city, the prosecutor said.

This is not Fenn’s first offense. He was also convicted of three counts of indecent exposure in 1981.

Fenn could have faced a maximum sentence of 41 years and 4 months in prison had he gone to trial and been convicted of all counts lodged against him.

He will remain free on $200,000 bail pending his sentencing, but he must continue to wear a GPS monitoring device.

SANTA ANA – from – A serial flasher was convicted [this week] of flashing dozens of women in Dana Point and throughout Orange County by approaching them naked while they were alone in parks, on jogging trails, or in parking lots.

Christopher Holden Fenn, 47, Mission Viejo, an insurance underwriter, pleaded guilty Friday to 27 felony counts of indecent exposure with a prior conviction from 1981 and one felony count of aggravated assault. The defendant is out of custody on $200,000 bail and must wear a GPS tracking device until his sentencing on Dec. 4, 2009, at 1:30 p.m. in Department C-41, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana. Fenn is expected to be sentenced to 10 years in state prison.

On Feb. 2, 2008, Jane Doe was in her first floor apartment in a complex on Heritage Way in Tustin. Fenn covered his face with a mask or shirt to disguise his identity, walked up to Jane Doe’s window naked, and exposed himself. Upon seeing Fenn, Jane Doe screamed and ran upstairs. A couple in a nearby parking lot saw the naked defendant and the woman in the lot called 9-1-1. The man began to chase after Fenn, who threw a brick at the man and tried to flee the scene. Tustin police arrived and arrested the defendant.

Subsequent investigation revealed that between July 2005 and February 2008, Fenn exposed himself to nearly 100 adult women. In most instances, the defendant flashed the women under similar circumstances, by approaching them naked with his face covered to hide his identity when the women were alone in parks, on walking or jogging trails, in parking lots, or other isolated areas. The flashing occurred in the early morning throughout south Orange County, on the way to his Santa Ana office, or near his Mission Viejo home, where he lived with his wife and four children. The defendant was linked to these cases through witness identifications, suspect descriptions, forensic evidence and mode of operation.

The investigation by the Irvine Police Department, Orange County District Attorney’s Office, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, and Tustin Police Department linked the defendant to flashing incidents in the Cities of Aliso Viejo, Dana Point, Irvine, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Mission Viejo, Tustin, and Rancho Santa Margarita.

Deputy District Attorney Robert Mestman of the Sexual Assault Unit is prosecuting this case.


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