Molestation suspect claims he was beaten by police

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) A man booked on suspicion of child molestation claims police beat him during his arrest at his home on the 1100 block of Pacific Street in east Bakersfield.

"They started beating me, and I had to be taken to the hospital," said 56-year-old Juan Carlos Gonzalez Vargas, of Fortuna.

Vargas said he was at a family party last weekend at a home on Oregon and Williams streets. In a jailhouse interview Friday, Vargas said he was told by police that he had molested a young girl at the party. Vargas denied molesting anyone.

"If I had done something wrong, I would have tried to get away and flee from here," said Vargas.

The man said that after the party, he stayed overnight at a relative's home, sleeping in the garage.

Police arrested Vargas on Wednesday. Vargas said he suffered injuries to both his legs, back and one finger. Vargas was wearing bandages on both shins, which he said were the result of blows by police.

Vargas was booked on suspicion of three felony counts of child molestation and one misdemeanor count of resisting arrest. He is being held on bail of $1,105,000.