Former county social worker sentenced to nine years for child sex abuse

Manuel Anton Sedillo-Messer engaged in sex acts with girls in his caseload

A former San Mateo County social worker who oversaw the cases of East Palo Alto children was sentenced to nine years in prison on Tuesday, April 12, the San Mateo County District Attorney's office said.

Manuel Anton Sedillo-Messer, 39, faced 30 felony charges for engaging in sexual acts with three underage girls who were under his supervision. He had agreed to a nine-year prison term on five felony counts related to the first two victims. In addition to serving prison time, he will have to register as a sex offender, Chief Deputy District Attorney Karen Guidotti said.

Mr. Sedillo-Messer was assigned to the family of the first victim in 2011 and became friendly with the girl, culminating in a sexual relationship for one month in the summer of 2014, according to the DA's office.

That same July, he allegedly took the second victim to the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose and engaged in sexual relations with her. One of the first two victims eventually reported the abuse to her mother, who notified police, according to the DA's office.

He also allegedly started molesting the third victim, who was in his caseload, when she was 16. The abuse continued until her 18th birthday, when she was released from the child-welfare system, according to police and court documents.

A civil lawsuit was filed on June 11, 2015, against Mr. Sedillo-Messer on behalf of the first victim by her court-appointed guardian, according to San Mateo County Superior Court documents. San Mateo County and others in the county's employ are also named as defendants in the lawsuit, which alleges breach of mandatory duty and negligent hiring, retention supervision and training.

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Posted by Not new
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Apr 14, 2016 at 4:08 am

How very sad for the victims of Cedilla Messer.

Unfortunately, this sort of thing is not new to San Mateo County. See: Cardell Brown, the San Mateo group home worker who raped boys in his care. San Mateo County human resources failed to learn that Brown had a criminal record before hiring him, although the information was easily accessible.

I was unable to pull up most of the records online in the Cedilla lawsuit. Can the Almanac please tell us who exactly the individuals in San Mateo County who are being sued in this case?

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Posted by Not new
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Apr 14, 2016 at 4:13 am

Sedillo Messer, not "Cedilla".

Also while looking up this case I noticed that almost the same date, a lawsuit was filed against DA Steve Wagstaffe; Karen Guidotti and prosecutor Mary Allhiser by a sheriff's deputy Neali Cordano. This is not a frivolous lawsuit. Apparently Cordano was injured by an inmate and she sued the County. But the San Mateo DA's office gave portions of her medical record that were unredacted and had nothing to do with her injury, to the inmate. This case is ongoing. I have never seen anything reported on this.


2 people like this
Posted by Not new
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Apr 14, 2016 at 4:54 am

All right, I see that the San Mateo County employees who operated the group homes where the victims were placed are being sued for failing to report suspected child abuse. Again, nothing new. For forty years, Children's Services in San Mateo County received complaints that Dr. Ayres was molesting boys and they didn't report him either.

Interestingly, the attorney for the molestation victims in the Sedillo case is Jonathan McDougall. McDougall was Dr. Ayres' criminal attorney. Odd how McDougall can switch sides so easily.

Like this comment
Posted by Michael G. Stogner
a resident of another community
on Apr 14, 2016 at 11:03 am

x San Mateo County Child Protective Services Social Worker when he was sentenced.

He kept his mouth shut and made no comment.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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