Political Notebook

Here’s when the DA’s decision on whether to charge Arambula is expected

The Fresno County District Attorney’s office will decide next week whether to charge Assemblyman Joaquin Arambula, D-Fresno, with misdemeanor child abuse stemming from his December arrest.

Assistant District Attorney Steve Wright said the office will have a decision either Monday or Tuesday. The office must decide whether to formally charge the assemblyman or drop the allegation by Arambula’s scheduled court appearance on Wednesday.

Fresno police arrested Arambula on Dec. 10 after responding to a call from his 7-year-old daughter’s elementary school. Arambula and his wife have stressed his innocence, saying he spanked the child on her buttocks as part of normal family discipline. Fresno police Chief Jerry Dyer was just as certain a crime had been committed, saying Arambula’s daughter suffered an injury that was not on her buttocks.

Arambula was cited on a misdemeanor charge of willful cruelty to a child and released. He regained custody of his daughters two days later. He has continued to serve in the Assembly, and he was not stripped of any committee positions.

Rory Appleton: 559-441-6015, @RoryDoesPhonics

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Rory Appleton is a fourth-generation Fresnan who covers politics for his hometown newspaper. A Fresno State graduate, he has won six first-place California News Publishers Association awards and a McClatchy President’s Award for his reporting and column writing over the last two years.