A tearful Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula tells us, the Fresno Police Department got it all wrong when they arrested him on Monday for willful cruelty on a child. The Valley lawmaker spoke out for the first time, since his arrest 48-hours ago.
Arambula said his seven-year old daughter was acting out on Sunday night, and he spanked her on her bottom.
His voice was choked with emotion on Wednesday, and with his wife Elizabeth by his side, Arambula said the incident is being blown way out of proportion. Arambula said it’s been a difficult couple of days since Monday. He said he hasn’t seen his three young daughters since.
“It is. I love my daughters, I really do. And they mean the world to me,” cried Arambula.
He and Elizabeth confirm their young children were taken out of the home.
Elizabeth said, “Haven’t really slept and haven’t really eaten, which has never happened to me.”
Arambula explained the chain of events, he said, led to his arrest. He said his seven-year old daughter was misbehaving on Sunday night, and he spanked her on her bottom. When he dropped her off to school the next day, he said, “I didn’t see any marks before she went to school. I was not aware of that.”
The California lawmaker said he doesn’t know what evidence Child Protective Services or Fresno Police saw at his daughter’s school that triggered his arrest.
“I’m not sure what it is exactly that caused and precipitated all of this,” Arambula said.
Arambula claims he has never hit anyone in the face, and almost never spanks any of his three daughters.
He stated, “It is a tool of last resort. It’s not something that we do. It’s rarely something that we ever get to, and yet, it is a part of discipline that we have.”
Arambula said he looks forward to getting his daughters back on Wednesday night, and he will go to family counseling to learn how to better communicate with his daughter.
“I’m so excited that we’re actually going to be back together tonight, that we have a chance to read a book and to cuddle and be a family again, despite everything that we’re going through,” ended Arambula.
Arambula is expected to be in court in March.