Assemblyman Arambula’s Wife, Mother, Doctors testify at Child Abuse Trial


Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula in Superior Court, Monday, May 13, 2019, with Defense Attorney Margarita Martinez-Baly, and ADA Steve Wright. Photo: Liz Kern/KMJ.


FRESNO, CA (KM) – Defense brings Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula’s wife, mother and doctors to testify Monday at the misdemeanor child abuse trial.

The defense continued its case from last week calling the family’s therapist and a child psychologist to the stand.

The child psychologist, Dr. Susan Napolitano testified that said fear of a parent going to jail could influence a child’s statements.

The prosecution is saying that the child may have been coached.

Dr. Joaquin Arambula’s mother, Amy Arambula on the stand denied any coaching.

She was asked by Defense Attorney Michael Ead about how her son disciplined her 7-year-old granddaughter.

“He will usually sit them down and talk them to I would call it ‘to death’ but not really. He’s just….he’s a talker, he believes in talking,” said Amy Arambula. She continued to say that he does hold his daughter in a hug sometimes because “when she gets mad she will run.”

Amy Arambula said she instructed her 7-year-old granddaughter to speak freely at the MDIC interview, saying “she could talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly” and not to worry about her dad – he was a big man who could take care of himself.

When asked, she said she was not protecting her son.

Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula in Superior Court, Monday, May 13, 2019, with Defense Attorneys Margarita Martinez-Baly, and Michael Ead, and ADA Steve Wright. Photo: Liz Kern/KMJ.


Dr. Arambula’s wife, Elizabeth Arambula, was the last to take the stand on Monday.

She said her husband was the more lenient parent, and she was the disciplinarian, who spanked — but not often.

Elizabeth Arambula said her oldest daughter was a challenge.

The defense showing video shot on a cell phone to illustrate her “difficult” child.

The defense has two more witnesses on Tuesday, Dr. Joaquin Arambula, along with his brother Diego, after that rebuttal, closing arguments and jury instructions will take place.

Testimony resumes Tuesday, May 14, 2019 at 9:00am.


Click to listen to the report by KMJ’s Liz Kern: