Sex offender who fled Stanislaus County courthouse convicted in rape of minor

Local News

STANISLAUS COUNTY, Calif. (KTXL) — A sex offender who fled a courthouse and evaded police in 2018 has been convicted on multiple charges Monday, the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office released in a statement.

Christopher Michael Munson, 45, who for years went by the false name Christopher Lee Taylor, was convicted on multiple sex crimes, including the rape of a child.

In August of 2016, a 13-year-old girl in Oakdale reported to her school she had been sexually assaulted by her mother’s boyfriend. Both the girl and mother knew Munson under his false name, which the DA’s office said Munson used to hide his identity from the mother.

Munson has been a registered sex offender since 2000, following a conviction for continuous sexual abuse of a child. Munson served six years in state prison and was required to register under the Megan’s Law registry of sex offenders.

Investigators eventually identified Munson and his home in Salida. As a SWAT team approached the home, Munson fled the home on foot. At one point he pulled a loaded handgun from his waistband, the DA said. Munson was arrested following a physical struggle involving a police dog.

Munson came to court in 2018 to attend a scheduled hearing. While there, Munson discovered police had a warrant for his DNA and might be placed in custody. He ran from the courthouse and escaped officers by running through traffic.

Months later, Munson was arrested and held on $1 million bail after new charges were filed. His DNA was tested by the Department of Justice, linking him to evidence found at the scene of the 2016 sexual assault.

During the trial, both the victim of the 2016 assault and a prior victim testified against Munson.

On Oct. 7, after one hour of deliberation, Munson was found guilty on all charges, including lewd acts upon a child under the age of 14 and rape by force or fear.

Munson faces a sentence of at least 25-years-to-life in state prison. Sentencing is set for Nov. 16.

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