A Costa Mesa nanny used his job to achieve belief with dad and mom to get entry to their younger boys with a purpose to movie himself sexually abusing them underneath the guise of enjoying with them, Orange County prosecutors mentioned on the primary day of the person’s trial Thursday, Sept. 7.
Deputy District Legal professional Juliet Oliver mentioned that by his nanny service, Matthew Antonio Zakrzewski, 34, persuaded greater than a dozen households throughout Southern California to rent him to care for their kids beginning in 2014.
For 5 years, Zakrzewski marketed his expertise working with kids recognized with autism and different developmental disabilities, Oliver mentioned. Of the youngsters he watched, Zakrzewski molested 17 of them, she mentioned. The youngest was simply 2 or 3 years outdated.
“(Zakrzewski) systematically babysat every of those 17 kids, and performed with them in a fashion that made them love him, made them assume they have been finest mates,” she mentioned. “To them, he was nice. They acquired to go on adventures with him.”
Carrying a grey swimsuit jacket, a plaid shirt and glasses, the tall, lanky Zakrzewski sat quietly as prosecutors laid out their case in opposition to him, listening to Oliver’s accusations in opposition to him with out emotion.
On the opposite facet of the courtroom, the jury of 12 males and 7 girls, together with alternates, have been proven photographs of the boys Zakrzewski allegedly sexually assaulted.
Each Oliver and Zakrzewski’s public defender, Jennifer Ryan, warned the jury in regards to the photographs and photographs they might see in the course of the trial.
“To be sincere, you’re not going to need to have a look at a few of” the proof, Ryan mentioned.
Decide Kimberly Menninger banned tv cameras from recording audio of the proceedings with a purpose to shield the names of the victims shared throughout Thursday’s opening arguments.
A show was turned away from the general public areas of the courtroom to stop anybody apart from the jury from seeing footage Zakrzewski filmed himself, allegedly of a few of the sexual acts he’s accused of acting on the victims.
In her opening remarks, Ryan requested the jury to maintain an open thoughts as they considered proof within the case, saying they need to not make “snap judgements.” She mentioned they need to try to “measure the intent behind” Zakrzewski’s actions within the photographs and movies they might see.
Based on Oliver, police in Laguna Seashore arrested Zakrzewski in Might 2019 not lengthy after a boy got here ahead to his dad and mom alleging the nanny molested him months earlier. After interviewing that boy, a Laguna Seashore detective assigned to the case rapidly discovered one other boy in Los Angeles who had accused Zakrzewski of comparable conduct round one 12 months earlier.
Within the 2018 case, the boy from L.A. refused to speak to an interviewer after initially telling his mom about Zakrzewski’s conduct. When the Laguna Seashore detective reached out to a Los Angeles Police Division detective who had investigated, each requested to speak to the boy once more. In his second interview, the boy accused Zakrzewski of molesting him, Oliver mentioned.
The deputy district lawyer mentioned the Laguna Seashore boy who informed his mom about Zakrzewski instantly led to the “unraveling of the facade” the nanny had construct up round himself and his enterprise. After the boy got here ahead, police acquired a search warrant for Zakrzewski’s dwelling, the place they seized his private pc.
They arrested him at Los Angeles Worldwide Airport the identical day they raided his dwelling. After they took him in to custody, Zakrzewski had his cellphone and a digital digicam in his possession.
On the cellphone, pc and digital digicam, Oliver mentioned, police discovered “1000’s of photographs, and 1000’s of movies” Zakrzewski allegedly took of his victims.
“(Zakrzewski) very particularly, and really strategically, and obsessively recorded each act with the youngsters,” she mentioned.
Zakrzewski, who described himself as a “manny” on his web site, labored for dozens of Southern California households. After the information of his arrest, extra households got here ahead accusing him of sexually assaulting their kids, police mentioned.
On Thursday, the Laguna Seashore mom whose son got here to her with accusations in opposition to Zakrzewski testified that she employed him after looking for a nanny with expertise taking good care of boys with behavioral problems.
She mentioned her son was recognized with a type of autism that made it troublesome for him to course of his feelings. He would overturn tables at school, and would throw overwhelming tantrums in public, she mentioned. When she discovered Zakrzewski’s web site, she mentioned she was impressed together with his obvious persistence with kids like hers.
“There have been photos of him the youngsters, photos of him rolling round with them, girls and boys,” she mentioned from the witness stand. “There have been a lot of opinions that he was a beautiful caregiver…it simply appeared like a whole lot of pleasure.”