Ex-deputy enters plea in abuse case


June 27, 2003

PLEASANTON -- A former Alameda County sheriff's deputy pleaded innocent to child molestation charges Wednesday in Pleasanton Superior Court, and continues being held without bail at Santa Rita county jail in Dublin. Samuel Mendonca Lima is charged with six felony counts of rape, continuous sexual abuse of a child, lewd acts on a child, penetration with a foreign object, possession of a short-barreled shotgun or rifle and possession of a destructive device in the form of a Molotov cocktail. After the girl reported the crime to Dublin police, authorities arrested Lima on June 8 at his Brentwood home. Judge Hugh Walker issued a stay-away order on June 9 and granted a prosecutor's motion to hold Lima without bail.

According to court records, the girl told police she was drugged with sleeping pills, Nyquil or alcohol before most sexual assault incidents. She would then wake up disoriented, unclothed, covered in petroleum jelly and suffering from loss of bowel control. Lima allegedly threatened to kill the girl if she told anyone, court papers said, and told her that in his native country of Brazil, men teach young girls about sex so the girls will know what to do when they get married.

After two years in the Alameda County Sheriff's Department -- where he worked at Santa Rita jail -- Lima was terminated for undisclosed reasons. He then worked part-time as a martial arts instructor at a studio in Dublin and developed an interest in hypnosis. The girl's mother told police she believes Lima may have hypnotized her daughter prior to some of the incidents. Lima's next court date is scheduled for July 16. He has previously been ordered to turn over his passport.