Huckaby allegedly Drugged another Girl

April 21, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
A Tracy family is accusing the suspect in that case, 28-year-old Melissa Huckaby, of drugging their little girl. Ten weeks before Sandra Cantu was abducted and murdered, another little girl went missing from the orchard estates mobile home park; only to be found hours later, according to the girl's family, in the company of Melissa Huckaby.

On the afternoon of January 17th, according to a Tracy police log, the girl was reported missing by her family. She returned two and half hours later. According to her family, the girl had spent the afternoon with Melissa Huckaby without their permission

ABC 7 spoke with the girl's mother and sister at their home. They told us, Huckaby had taken the girl to several local parks and given her a cup of water from a local fast food restaurant.

The family did not want to appear on camera, but the sister told us by telephone, the little girl acted strangely when she got home. "Her speech was slurred, like she had a really bad lisp. She kept falling asleep. She would cry like something was wrong with her. She couldn't stand up. She couldn't walk. Every time she walked, she's fall."

The family said they took the little girl to Sutter Tracy Memorial Hospital, where she was examined. A police log for January 17 confirms the family's account that the girl tested positive for the muscle relaxant "benzodiazapine."

"Any report with Ms. Huckaby's name on it, whether it's this report, or a traffic collision is part of our investigation," said Sgt. Tony Sheneman with the Tracy Police Department.

Now that Sandra Cantu has died, the girl's family wonders if police should've done more to investigate their incident. "If they would've done their job right, everything with Sandra could've been prevented and she would've been here today."

In a surprise move, the judge in the case announced he would be stepping aside. The San Joaquin County Superior Court's presiding judge issued a brief statement yesterday, saying only that, "the Honorable Terrence Van Oss has recused himself."

No explanation was given for the move.

Huckaby stands accused of raping and murdering Sandra Cantu. A new judge issued a gag order Tuesday, directing everyone involved not to talk about the case.

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