Illegal immigrant accused of beating boy

Juan Arreola kicked and punched his girlfriend's son, police say. If convicted, he faces jail time.
Friday, July 27, 2007

The Express-Times

EASTON | A 20-year-old illegal immigrant faces assault charges after he punched and kicked his girlfriend's 2-year-old boy, knocking him unconscious, police said.

According to court papers:

Between June 7 and June 10, Juan Arreola kicked the toddler, who fell and hit his head. On June 10, the Easton man punched the boy twice in the chest to keep him from going to sleep.

The boy was taken to Easton Hospital on June 10 with extensive bruising on his face, chest and back. Doctors found the toddler suffered a brain injury due to blood collecting in his brain and transferred him to Children's Hospital in Philadelphia.

Court papers say Arreola is an illegal immigrant who entered the country from Mexico in 1993. Arreola worked at the Phillipsburg Taco Bell for the past two years. In April he moved in with his girlfriend, the toddler's mother.

A long investigation kept the police from arresting Arreola until almost two months after the abuse, according to Easton police Lt. Scott Casterline. Casterline said the child was removed from danger during the investigation.

He said the case was referred to Easton police from the Northampton County Office of Children, Youth and Families. He didn't know whether the boy was still in county custody or had been returned to his mother.

Calls to caseworker Chris Broubalow were not returned.

Arreola, of the 1300 block of Lehigh Street, was arrested Thursday morning and arraigned before District Judge Michael J. Koury Jr. on two counts each of aggravated assault, simple assault and endangering the welfare of children.

Arreola was sent to Northampton County Prison in lieu of $1 million bail.

Casterline said if Arreola is convicted he will have to serve his sentence before he is deported.

Reporter Sarah Cassi can be reached at 610-258-7171 or by e-mail at ... xml&coll=2