Police: Man molested child at daycare facility

WATSONVILLE — A Watsonville man was arrested Tuesday for allegedly molesting a child four years ago, Watsonville Police Sgt. Mish Radich said Wednesday.

The two-month investigation was launched when the victim came forward, Radich said.

Arturo García-Gahona, 50, was charged with lewd and lascivious acts with a child, and oral copulation of a child under 10. He was booked into Santa Cruz County Jail in lieu of $250,000 bail, jail records showed.

He faces a life sentence if convicted, Radich said.

According to Radich, the victim told investigators that a daycare provider improperly touched them at the daycare facility when the victim was 6.

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Detectives have notified the California Department of Social Services Community Care Licensing Division, which oversees all licensed daycare facilities within the state. That agency is also investigating the claims.

Investigators believe there is an additional victim, who has not yet been identified.

The daycare facility, which was located on Hill Avenue, has since closed. Another facility is operating under the same license at another location, Radich said.

Anyone with further information is asked to contact Detective Rudy Lopez at 768-3357.


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