Closing arguments, jury to decide the fate of Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Dr. Joaquin Arambula's misdemeanor child abuse case closed with very different perspectives on the evidence.

Prosecutors pointed to the girl's six statements when she first revealed a bruise at school.

She told teachers, staff members, a CPS worker, and police some version of her father hitting or slapping her.

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But the defense pointed to the limited police investigation into her story.

"If this is the way they investigate child abuse cases, we should all be very afraid," said defense attorney Michael Aed.

The CPS investigation was more thorough, according to Aed, and instead of resulting in a criminal charge, it led to CPS returning Arambula's children to his home just a couple days later.

But prosecutor Steve Wright pointed out the CPS investigation was inconclusive as to abuse by Dr. Arambula.

He said the girl still said her father hurt her in a neutral interview, even after feeling family pressure to protect him.

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"He hit me on the cheek like really hard like this and then he gave me that bruise," the alleged victim said.

But Aed said the girl is a storyteller who embellished when she realized it got her attention, and Dr. Arambula and his family shouldn't suffer for it anymore.

"This family needs to heal," he said. "The healing starts now... when you find Dr. Arambula not guilty."
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