- Associated Press - Friday, November 13, 2015

EDINBURG, Texas (AP) - A jury has sentenced a former South Texas police officer to four years in prison for having sex with a 16-year-old girl he met while on patrol.

Erasmo Mata Jr. of Mercedes was sentenced Friday. On Wednesday the 26-year-old was convicted of one count of sexual assault of a child. He was acquitted of another sexual assault charge.

Mata was fired as a Pharr police officer amid the investigation going back to 2013. Prosecutors say Mata met the girl while on patrol at an apartment complex and asked for her phone number.

The girl’s family discovered the relationship when her mother came home early and found Mata running out of their apartment.

As part of his conviction, Mata will be forced to register as a sex offender.

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