FRESNO (KMJ) — A child cruelty charge has been filed against Assembly-member Joaquin Arambula. The 41 year old is facing the misdemeanor allegation following an incident involving his daughter.
Fresno County District Attorney’s Office announced it had filed against the state lawmaker Tuesday morning. It relates to an incident in December during which Arambula said his daughter had acted out and he spanked her bottom to discipline her.
That description was contradicted by Fresno Police, which stated that the seven year old girl was struck in a visible location.
“A school official, very alertly, was made aware of this injury and so the injury obviously was visible,” said Chief Jerry Dyer at the time of the arrest.
“Since they’re a mandatory reporter they notified Child Protective Services.”
If convicted of the charge, Arambula faces a sentence of up to six months behind bars. He was previously cited to appear in Fresno County Superior Court for his Arraignment on Wednesday.
In a statement, Assembly-member Arambula says the allegation that he harmed one of his daughters is false and unthinkable.
“My wife and I are shocked that the District Attorney has decided to file charges. While politics may have influenced the decision to file, we are confident that our judicial system will find this allegation to be false.”
Arambula also announced a temporary leave of absence from the State Assembly.
Hear the report from KMJ’s Dominic McAndrew as it aired: