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Fresno Lawmaker Accused of Abuse for Spanking Daughter

An assemblyman in California is suspected of child abuse for spanking his daughter, which provoked her school to notify the authorities the day after the alleged incident.

Joaquin Arambula, previously an ER doctor who is now a California state assemblyman in Fresno, has three daughters with his wife Elizabeth. He stated that he loves his children who are ages 3, 6 and 7, and that they “mean the world” to him, and that he and his wife on very rare occasions have used spanking, which is legal in all 50 states, as a form of discipline.

On Sunday evening, Arambula’s 7-year-old daughter reportedly started to misbehave and Arambula administered a spanking to the girl’s bottom as punishment. He said that upon inspection of his daughter’s body afterward, he did not see any visible injuries on her.

The following day when Arambula took his daughter to school they purported that the girl was bearing visible proof of possible abuse, and they notified CPS to report their alleged findings.

The Fresno police arrested Arambula on Monday for suspicion of misdemeanor child abuse. Arambula stated that he is not aware of what caused the belief that he inflicted that degree of harm to his daughter.

All three of the children were removed from the home, and two days after his arrest Arambula and his wife issued a public statement where he expressed embarrassment for the incident. In addition, Arambula said that he is going to go to counseling in order to learn better communication skills to use with his family.

The Fresno Chief of Police said that he feels that probable cause exists to support child abuse charges and that while he can’t discuss the details of the case the girl allegedly had marks that were not on her buttocks. He stated that it is likely that within the next week the findings of the investigation would be handed over to the DA “for the purposes of pursuing prosecution.”

Arambula is scheduled to appear in court for the allegations on March 13.

If you or someone you love is suspected of child abuse, contact Orange County criminal defense lawyer Staycie R. Sena at (949) 477-8088 for a consultation now.

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