A 25-year-old former beauty queen was charged in Southern California on Friday with distributing pornographic photos of a 4-year-old girl who is her relative, prosecutors said.
Meghan Breanna Alt, 25, of San Clemente was charged with one felony count of possession and control of child pornography and three felony counts of lewd acts upon a child, federal and local authorities said in a joint statement.
Alt took pictures of the girl in sexually explicit poses, then sent them to a U.S. Marine stationed at Camp Pendleton in Southern California in exchange for cash and gifts, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Alt was crowned Mrs. Orange County and in 2014 competed for the Mrs. California title. Those contests are aligned with the Mrs. America and Mrs. World pageants, and all of the competitions are for married women.
She was arrested in San Diego on Wednesday, officials said.
Her arrest resulted from an investigation by the Orange County Child Exploitation Task Force and other law enforcement agencies, officials said.
It was unclear what actions authorities might have taken against the Marine. A representative for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which was involved in the case, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Officials declined to be more specific about the victim in order to protect her identity, but they said the girl is related to Alt.
Authorities said they are looking for other potential victims in the case. Alt was active in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Irvine and San Clemente as a youth volunteer and had access to children, authorities said.
She is being held in Orange County jail on $100,000 bail and was expected to be arraigned on Friday in Orange County Superior Court. It was not immediately clear if she has obtained an attorney.
(Reporting by Marty Graham; Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Eric Beech)