Press Releases

Wednesday 08/05/2015 4:29 PM - Child Abuse Investigation Update

Contact: Tony Cipolla
Phone: (805) 781 4547
Type of Incident: Child Abuse Investigation Update
Date and Time of Incident: May 17-24, 2015
Place of Occurrence: LEAD Boot Camp at Camp San Luis Obispo
Victim Information: 15 victims, ages 12-17 years old
Suspect Information: Marissa Elizabeth Larios, 36, Huntington Park Police Department Carlos Manuel Gomez-Marquez, 31, South Gate Police Department Patrick Marvin Nijland, 47, Huntington Park Police Department Edgar Yovany Gomez, 35, South Gate Police Department
Details of News Release: The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office has concluded its investigation into allegations of physical abuse inflicted on children who were attending the Leadership Empowerment and Discipline (LEAD) Boot Camp Program put on by the Huntington Park and South Gate Police Departments. The one week camp was held May 17-24 at Camp San Luis Obispo, a California Army National Guard Military Base in San Luis Obispo. All participants in the camp are from Southern California and did not involve any children from the local area. Because the camp is in the Sheriff's jurisdiction, we immediately began an investigation after receiving a report of the allegations from the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services on 5-28-15. After a two month investigation which involved interviewing 37 participants at the camp, Sheriff's Detectives were able to identify 15 male and female victims ranging in age from 12 to 17 years old who claimed they were assaulted by the drill instructors while at the camp. After an exhaustive and thorough investigation, Sheriff's Detectives served search and arrest warrants on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week for two members of the Huntington Park Police Department and two members of the South Gate Police Department. Sheriff's Detectives served arrest warrants to Detective Marissa Larios and Officer Patrick Nijland of the Huntington Park Police Department and Officer Carlos Gomez-Marquez and Officer Edgar Gomez of the South Gate Police Department. Bail was set at $20,000. All four suspects posted bond and are not in custody. Gomez and Gomez-Marquez were arrested on the following five charges: 1. Willful cruelty to a child (felony), 2. Criminal threats (felony), 3. Criminal conspiracy (felony), 4. Criminal battery (misdemeanor), 5. Abuse under color of authority (misdemeanor). Larios was arrested on four charges: 1. Willful cruelty to a child (felony), 2. Criminal conspiracy (felony), 3. Criminal battery (misdemeanor), 4. Abuse under color of authority (misdemeanor) Nijland was arrested for: 1. Willful cruelty to a child (felony), 2. Criminal battery (misdemeanor), 3. Abuse under color of authority (misdemeanor). All charges will be filed with the San Luis Obispo County District Attorney's Office. The Sheriff's Office would like to acknowledge the assistance with this investigation by the FBI Computer Analysis Response Team.

Prepared By: tcipolla
Released: Wednesday 08/05/2015 4:30 PM