ST. GEORGE (News4Utah) – Southern Utah man is behind bars, charged with sexually abusing a young girl.
Police say the victim was 9 years old when the alleged abuse happened. Years later the child told someone she trusted.
“The girl was out with her mother when they saw Jose Delacruz, and the child became upset and she ended up disclosing the abuse to her mother,” said Officer Lona Trombley with St. George police.
The mother went to police, who investigated.
Jose Delacruz was arrested.
“Based on the disclosures, the abuse began when Jose volunteered to babysit the child to help the family out. Often times with sex assault cases the suspects are not strangers, whether they are family members, or friends of the family, those are the people who more often offend on our children,” said Trombley.
Delacruz is charged with child rape, object rape, sodomy and aggravated sexual abuse of a child.
“We all have a responsibility as grown-ups and as parents to sit the children down that we’re responsible for and talk to them about all of these things, what’s appropriate, what if an adult tells you: ‘If you say something I will hurt you’, or hurt someone they love, what should you do? Tell them those kind of secrets are not good,” said Trombley.
Delacruz is being held without bail, as Homeland Security investigates. Additional charges could be filed.
For resources on how you can talk to your child you can contact your local police department, or the Children’s Justice Center.