Man jailed for abusing girl

January 26, 2002|By DARREN SIMON, Staff Writer

A 27-year-old El Centro man was arrested by police Friday on suspicion of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a 9-year-old girl.

Joel Martinez Santiago was booked into county jail early Saturday, hours after he was taken into custody. His bail was set at $100,000.

Police are investigating reports that Santiago allegedly committed several acts to the child over a period of time.

El Centro police Sgt. Jerrold Novak said Santiago was thought to be the boyfriend of the girl's mother.

The case evolved when the girl told a friend what was allegedly taking place. That friend told the girl's mother, who took the child to El Centro Regional Medical Center for an examination Friday.

Officials at the hospital contacted police investigators.

Novak said, "Investigators were able to determine there were several incidents that occurred."

However, he also said the child had no physical trauma. He did not comment further on the girl's condition.


Police made contact with Santiago at his home in the 300 block of North 10th Street shortly before 5 p.m. He was taken into custody at 7:13 p.m., Novak said.

>> Staff Writer Darren Simon can be reached at 337-4082.

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