Trial of Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula to begin Tuesday

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California Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula will go on trial Tuesday.

He faces one misdemeanor count of child cruelty. He was arrested for an alleged incident involving his 7-year-old daughter in December.

“Misdemeanor cases just don’t get this type of attention because they’re not significant to people,” David Mugridge a defense attorney and legal analyst said. 

Mugridge said Arambula’s career could hang in the balance.

“There are obviously political consequences to him and he cannot afford to allow a conviction to take place for child abuse,” he said. 

Arambula was arrested December 10. Police said Child Protective Services called from his daughter’s school to report an injury. Days later the assemblyman spoke out.

“I did spank her on her bottom. It’s something that’s not normal for us, and yet we have to be able to have some ability to set some rules for our kids,” Arambula said. 

The next day Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer responded it’s never been about spanking.  

“It’s absolutely permissible for a parent to discipline their child by spanking them on the buttocks. That is not the issue and in fact in this investigation there is no injury to the buttocks,” he said. 

Mugridge said details on the injury should come out in trail and those will likely play a big role.

“The district attorneys office has said that the facts that they are in possession of make this case different from the normal run of the mill variety parent spanking their child for discipline,” Mugridge said.  

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