HESPERIA • A man and his wife were arrested Friday for the torture of the man's daughter after the girl ran away from their Hesperia home and fled to Pomona, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Hesperia station officials said.
Ten additional children under the age of 18, all belonging to the couple, were removed from the home.
Steve James Pope, 32 and his wife, Blanca Alicia Coronel, 38, both of Hesperia, were arrested for cruelty to a child. Coronel was also booked for torture.
Hesperia officials received a call from Pomona Police Department officers stating a young female runaway from Hesperia had contacted them to report her father and stepmother, later identified as Pope and Coronel, had been abusing her, Susan Rose, spokeswoman for the Hesperia station, said. The age of the girl was not released and neither was the nature of the abuse.
Deputy Joseph Garay drove out to the Pomona station to pick up the child and bring her back to the Hesperia station. He reported the girl had visible injuries consistent with abuse, according to a release.
Garay and Detective Jarrod Burns contacted Coronel and Pope at their home in the 8200 block of Monroe Street. Following an investigation, they arrested the couple. Due to the circumstances, the couple's 10 minor children were removed from the home and placed with Child Protective Services, Rose said. Other adult children were allowed to stay in the home.
Pope is being held on $100,000 bail and Coronel's bail was set at $500,000.
A search of court documents shows only two vehicle code violations on Coronel's record. Pope has a disorderly conduct conviction against him along with several vehicle code violations.
The case is still under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Hesperia station at (760) 947-1500 or call WeTip at (800) 78-CRIME.
Beatriz E. Valenzuela may be reached at (760) 951-6276 or at BValenzuela@VVDailyPress.com.