A Santa Barbara man is facing felony charges of child molestation and child abuse, accused of sexually and physically abusing a juvenile family member on multiple occasions.
Miguel Montes Lopez, 42, was arrested June 13 at his home and booked into the Santa Barbara County Jail.
Santa Barbara police Sgt. Riley Harwood said Officer John Nelson responded June 12 to a local youth shelter to admit a juvenile seeking accommodation. Harwood said law enforcement is required to investigate the circumstances surrounding juveniles checking in to such facilities.
Nelson learned the victim had run away from home to seek refuge from an abusive relative.
On June 13, detectives conducted a follow-up investigation, which revealed that in recent months the victim had been sexually and physically abused on multiple occasions.
A $100,000 felony arrest warrant for Lopez was obtained, as well as a search warrant for his residence in the 500 block of Coronel Place.