A sheriff’s deputy in Texas has been accused of sexually assaulting a 4-year-old girl — who is related to him — and threatening his undocumented mother with deportation if she reported his actions.
According to officials, Jose Nunez, 10-year veteran detention officer for the Bexar County Sheriff’s Office, was arrested Sunday. His arrest came after the girl “made an outcry” to her mother, Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar told reporters during a news conference.
The girl’s mother immediately took her to a local fire station and reported the allegations against Nunez, said Salazar.
“The details of the case are, quite frankly, heartbreaking, disturbing, disgusting and infuriating all at the same time,” Salazar said during the conference.
Nunez, 47, faces a felony charge of super aggravated sexual assault of a child. If convicted, he faces a minimum of 25 years in prison, according to Salazar.
During the press conference, Salazar revealed Nunes allegedly touched the young girl inappropriately at her residence for the last several months. The repeated abuse could have occurred for the last two years.
Investigators believe there may be additional victims who are also related to Nunez, Salazar said.
Nunez allegedly threatened the girl’s mother, who is an immigrant from Guatemala, with deportation.
“Now that’s something in law enforcement we’ve been saying for some time, that that’s always a concern in the undocumented community,” Salazar said during the conference. “I would urge anybody that may be undocumented that is a victim of a crime or a witness to a crime to please come forward to report it.”
Salazar said deputies are working to ensure that the girl’s mother receives protected status as the case proceeds.
Nunez has been placed on administrative leave, during which 10 days are paid, Salazar said. The Sheriff added that he plans to “separate” Nunez from the agency as soon as possible.
(Photo: Bexar County Sheriff's Office)