Steven Neil Paff, a 46-year-old drifter and previously convicted sex offender, has been sentenced to two years in state prison for creeping out a 13-year-old girl at a Foothill Ranch supermarket while he was still wearing his electronic monitoring device.
Paff pleaded guilty in October to a single felony count of annoying or molesting a child under 18 years of age with a prior conviction.
He already knew something about pleading his guilt, having done so in October 1998 and May 2009 to indecent exposure charges. That earned him the ankle monitor he wore while following the girl from aisle to aisle of the Ralphs the day after the Fourth of July while her mother waited in the car.
After the creeper tried to strike up conversation and mentioned his first name, the girl fled to a checker for help. One store employee confronted Paff while another escorted the girl to her mom's car.
When told what had transpired in the store, the mother had her daughter, who was still visibly upset, lock herself inside the car before mom went into the store to confront Paff. They exchanged words before he split. She ran after him and jotted down the make, model and license number of the car he sped off in.
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The mother contacted the Orange County Sheriff's Department, which patrols Lake Forest, including the Foothill Ranch community. As deputies launched an investigation, she spent a week scouring photos posted on the state sex offender database thanks to Megan's Law. She eventually found Paff's photo and notified sheriff's investigators, who then arrested the creeper.