A 65-year-old man arrested by Oakdale Police after an exchange of letters soliciting sex with young boys, has agreed to a one-year county jail sentence followed by three years of probation and registering as a sex offender the rest of his life in a deal announced by the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office on Wednesday, Feb. 3.
Stephen Louis Busch, of Oakdale, was arrested last November after police conducted an investigation after a series of notes seeking sex with young boys that was brought to their attention.
Busch pleaded no contest to the felony of arranging a meeting with the intent of committing lewd acts with a child and going to that meeting place. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors dropped one felony count of sending harmful material to a minor with the intent to sexually arouse the child.
The police investigation showed that over 40 letters had been posted in the alleyway between the 100 block of Stanislaus and Warrington avenues. The letters were forwarded to police by a resident who discovered them in mid-September. During the course of the investigation, detectives posed as a 15-year-old boy and responded to the letters, leaving their own letters at the same location.
After an exchange of a few letters over a two-month period, in which a home address and name were left by the suspect, a date to meet up was arranged. Investigators staked out the arranged rendezvous spot with a police decoy and arrested Busch when he showed up at the location.
When questioned, Busch admitted to leaving the letters and being at the location to meet the boy he had been communicating with.
In addition to the jail sentence, probation, and registration, Busch will have to attend 52 weeks of classes intended to rehabilitate convicted sex offenders.
According to the district attorney’s office, Busch is scheduled to be formally sentenced on March 4 and remains in custody and has been held at the county jail since his Nov. 25 arrest.