Arrest Warrant Recalled On Man Falsely Accused Of Raping Toddler, Father Arrested For Child Neglect

Arrest Warrant Recalled On Man Falsely Accused Of Raping Toddler, Father Arrested For Child Neglect

The arrest warrant that was initially released by the police for a suspect has been recalled because witnesses rejected with their description of the suspect.

Cover photo: Hector Gabriel-Jimenez (Photo: Collier County Sheriff's Office)

The arrest warrant for a man in Florida that was initially released by the police on suspicion of raping a 2-year-old baby in October has been recalled just days after it was issued because witnesses refuted their description of the suspect. As we had reported earlier, Roberto Lopez, 40, of Immokalee, was arrested because he allegedly matched the description of the suspect the witnesses gave, according to News-Press. The arrest warrant was recalled on October 24, and the man was cleared of all charges. It was first issued on October 10. Karie Partington, Collier County Sheriff's Media Relations Manager, said, "However, once the warrant was in place, the witnesses recanted their statements, which meant we no longer had probable cause for an arrest."



A report on November 13 states that the baby's father, 23-year-old Hector Gabriel-Jimenez, was arrested on one count of child neglect causing great bodily harm for failing to protect the baby. No arrests have been made for the rape so far, but police do have a suspect as this is an ongoing investigation. The baby was assaulted so badly that she needed several reconstructive surgeries. When the crime was first discovered, an arrest warrant for Lopez was issued based on witness accounts. 



However, a witness, a 16-year-old girl, said that the picture of the suspect released by the police was not the same as the man she saw in the bathroom with the child. The teenager said that she had gotten up to go to the bathroom when she found a man and the child with blood running down both the man's and child's legs. The teen also added that the rape happened at a home in the 200 block of North 2nd Street on October 6, where she resides with a number of temporary tenants. At the time, the teen was with her boyfriend. She said that Gabriel-Jimenez and his daughter were just staying there overnight. 



According to News-Press, it took nearly a month for the police to arrest Gabriel-Jimenez as they needed time to get an interpreter. The 16-year-old witness' accounts also had to be interpreted by her boyfriend because she only spoke in Spanish. Pascual Lopez-Perez, 48, a man who lives in the trailer-home, also pointed out that said Gabriel-Jimenez is the girl's father.



He said Gabriel-Jimenez did not stay there but only went over to have a drink with a few people he knew from work. Lopez-Perez and Gabriel-Jimenez worked in the fields in Immokalee. The police however kept looking for leads and finally arrested Gabriel-Jimenez a month later for neglect. When questioned, Gabriel-Jimenez told investigators he had brought the toddler from his native country, Guatemala to the US.



His arrest report has stated he did this so "he would be allowed to stay in the USA and not have any problems with immigration for entering the U.S.A. illegally."  Gabriel-Jimenez, the teen, her boyfriend are all from a rural region in Guatemala. Homeland Security records show that Gabriel-Jimenez and the toddler were taken into custody in Lukeville, Arizona, on February 4 by Customs and Border Protection. However, they were released with a notice to appear regarding their entrance into the US, according to the arrest report. 




Disclaimer : This is based on sources and we have been unable to verify this information independently.

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