Thursday, August 5, 2010

Dad charged with abuse of 2-year-old daughter during visitation; investigating deputies find $50,000 pot farm (Victorville, California)

There are so many child abuse stories that come out of Victorville, California (San Bernadino County) that I have practically lost count. And many of them involve fathers during court-ordered visitation.

It's not clarified here whether visitation was court-ordered, but it seems likely. Notice that the mother says that the 2-year-old daughter had shown "possible" signs of abuse before, but nothing like what she had after this particular 3-day visit with dad CLARANCE HUGHES: welts along the back of her body from the top of her body to the ankles. Of course, we know that family judges in San Bernadino County now have a national reputation for ignoring and belittling mothers with child abuse claims, so it's not like it would have done this mother much good to complain before.

Added bonus: When deputies were checking out the mother's claim, they discovered that Daddy and his brother had 56 marijuana plants growing in an unsecured back room to the house.

Child abuse check turns up $50,000 pot farm
August 05, 2010 10:00 AM
Beatriz Valenzuela

VICTORVILLE • An investigation into possible child abuse Wednesday night led deputies to an indoor marijuana farm worth an estimated $50,000, according to San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Victorville station officials.

Shannon Hairston, 29, of Victorville was arrested for possession of marijuana for sale. His brother, Clarance Hughes, 24, was booked into West Valley Detention Center for child cruelty.

Hairston returned his niece, Hughes’ daughter, to the child’s mother Wednesday around 9 p.m. after a three-day visit, according to Karen Hunt, spokeswoman for the Victorville station.

Hairston told the woman the 2-year-old girl had acted up and had to be disciplined before he left the mother’s home, Hunt stated.

“The mother noticed a cut to the child’s head and when she inspected the girl she noticed she had welts along the back of her body from the top of her back to the ankles, consistent with belt marks or a similar sort of object,” Hunt said.

The mother had noticed possible signs of abuse in the past, but never this excessive, Hunt stated, so the woman decided to call sheriff’s officials.

Deputy Erik Orduno noted the marks on the toddler and went to Hughes’ and Hairston’s home in the 16300 block of Camelback Road, with assistance from Deputies Osvaldo Pelayes and Anthony Benjamin.

“The child’s father was not at home, but when (Hairston) opened the door, the deputies could smell the strong odor of marijuana coming from the residence,” Hunt said.

Officials obtained a search warrant for the home and found 56 marijuana plants in an unsecured back room.

“The child had access to that room, and the potential dangers such as electrical wiring in the room,” Hunt said.

While deputies were executing the search warrant, Hughes returned to the home and was arrested.

Both men were arrested and taken to Victor Valley Jail.