Published 4:36 PM EDT Sep 21, 2018
NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- By day, this swanky beach town is a jumble of bikers, skateboarders and tanned young men and women with surfboards slung under their muscled arms.
By night, it has the reputation of being a nonstop party hotspot, whether it's in the many bars or mixing margaritas on sundecks, where people-watching plays out against the crashing waves of the Pacific.
The upscale seaside town provided the ideal hunting grounds for a handsome doctor-turned dating-show contestant who, if the charges against him are found to be true, decided one attractive girlfriend wasn't enough. Authorities allege Grant Robicheaux and his companion Cerissa Riley went prowling for other young women to join them in threesomes when they were too drunk or drugged to consent.
On Friday, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas said investigators are tracking down more than a dozen new leads in the case that has brought in about 50 calls in answer to his request for anyone who believes they might have been victimized by the pair to come forward.
The case involves victims who believe they were too intoxicated or under the influence of drugs to consent to sex. Rackauckas said he believes there may be additional victims because of videotapes and photographs confiscated by police in a search of Robicheaux's home.
Robicheaux and Riley were arrested earlier this week on a variety of charges, including rape by use of drugs and possession of controlled substances and assault weapons.
Neighbors were still abuzz Thursday over the events that have shaken the Peninsula, the bayside section of town where Robicheaux lived in a neat, three-story, Cape-Cod-style house off a busy street. They noted that the doctor's Mercedes-Benz G-wagon, a jeep-like luxury vehicle that sells new for more than $120,000, has disappeared.
Missing, too, was the doctor himself, a familiar sight around this part of town.
"It seemed like he was always in his 'scrubs,'" said neighbor Stephen Sumney referring to the loose-fitting, easily washed attire of hospital workers.
He recalled his last, brief encounter on the street with Robicheaux was about the quality of the surf -- an easy de facto conversation subject in a town like Newport Beach. Robicheaux, 38, was known to be friendly and outgoing, and was often seen with Riley, 31.
More: 6 new victims emerge in sexual-assault case against Bravo TV doctor Grant Robicheaux
More: Reality TV contestant and girlfriend arrested for drugging, raping women
Charm and chiseled good looks had earned him a reputation that extended beyond Newport Beach.
Orange Coast Magazine named the blond-haired, blue-eyed, Louisiana-educated Robicheaux "Bachelor of the Year" in 2013. The next year, he appeared in a Bravo TV dating show, the "Online Dating Rituals of the American Male," where he was looking "to find the perfect woman, have a fantasy wedding and raise the All-American family."
In recent years, his life appeared to some to be more settled.
"That didn't seem like a party house at all," said Sumney, a native who said Newport Beach gets a bad rap for its party-hearty reputation.
Another nearby resident, Matt Everett, didn't know Robicheaux, but said for those who seek it out, there's "lot of partying going on" in Newport Beach.
The first sexual assault allegedly took place in April 2016, after the couple met a woman at a restaurant in Newport Beach and later invited her to a boat party.
Now, with the new leads, D.A. Rackauckas said there could be additional victims.
"We are expanding our inquiry to several states," he said Friday, adding that it appears that the pair may have met additional women through social media apps like Bumble and dating apps.
Attorneys for the pair say they are innocent.
“They have been aware of these accusations for a number of months and each of them will formally deny the truth of these allegations at their first opportunity in court,” lawyers Philip Cohen and Scott Borthwick said in a joint statement to the Los Angeles Times.
Investigators say the pair are believed to have attended festivals like Burning Man; the Dirtybird Campout festival in Silverado, California, and the Splash House festival in Palm Springs, and there could be additional victims.
Medical group drops him
The state medical board is in the early stages of investigating charges by the Orange County District Attorney, but Robicheaux’s medical license is active and current, meaning he is able to practice medicine.
There was no indication, however, that he is indeed practicing. NewportCare Medical Group, where Robicheaux has worked as an orthopaedic surgeon, is “no longer with us,” said the person answering the phone who declined to give their name.
In reviews of the medical group on the website Yelp, Robicheaux generally received praise, including one patient who said "his New Orleans upbringing and southern hospitality" pay off when it comes to care.
But one review from 2017 indicated he might sometimes be a little too laid-back, saying that "during my appointment Robicheaux walks in with a filthy doctor's coat that hadn't been washed in months and Vans sneakers. I'm thinking...'this guy performs surgery on people?'"
Robicheaux has also been sued for medical malpractice three times in the county, twice in 2016 and once in 2014, the court docket shows.
There have also been internal disputes. An Orange County chiropractor sued Robicheaux and NewportCare for fraud in May, according to court documents. The plaintiff alleged that Robicheaux broke promises that the medical group would hire him as head of physical therapy and chiropractic, as well as pay him a certain salary.
Girlfriend Riley assaulted women: police
As for Riley, the district attorney alleges she was fully involved in the drugging of the victims of victims and taking part in the sex acts involving them.
Riley's name appears on Robicheaux's mailbox but she is listed in the D.A.'s charges as officially living in Brea, a suburb of 40,000 about 30 miles southeast of Los Angeles.
At that home in Brea, dogs barked from inside, but no one answered.