A 48-year-old man molested three underage female relatives, including one girl when she was 7 to 9 years old during sleepovers in Fullerton, a prosecutor told jurors Tuesday as the defendant's attorney claimed the accusers are lying.
Amador Estrada is charged with three counts of lewd or lascivious acts with a minor younger than 14. The dates of the alleged incidents are Oct. 21, 2009, and June 19, 2012. He also faces a sentencing enhancement allegation for multiple victims.
Estrada is only charged with molesting two girls, but a third girl is expected to also testify she was victimized, Deputy District Attorney Rebecca Reed said.
Top news of the day
The molestation came to light when the youngest accuser discussed the allegations with playmates at her elementary school, Reed said.
"This brave little girl finally decided to say something and finally someone believed her,'' Reed said.
The girl had mentioned it to other family members, but they did not follow it up, Reed said. When a friend of the girl told her mother, the principal was called and she alerted police, Reed said.
When the girl would be dropped off at her relative's home for a sleepover in their two-bedroom home she would normally sleep on the floor next to the defendant, Reed said.
Sometimes she would complain to her relatives that Estrada "touched me and I don't like him touching me,'' so they would let her sleep in another room, Reed said.
After police began investigating the allegations other girls in the family reported "inappropriate'' behavior and incidents of molestation, Reed said. One girl accused Estrada of "licking his lips'' as he would leer at her crotch, Reed said.
Another girl said she was 9 or 10 he grabbed her once and forced himself on her until he became aroused, Reed said. That girl would sometimes skip dinner so she wouldn't have to pass him the hallway for fear he would grab her, Reed said.
The youngest accuser's parents "do not support her'' and think she is lying, Reed said. That girl's parents will testify for the defense, Reed said.
The girl also changed her story when interviewed by social workers, Reed said. The girl may have been partly motivated to change her story because she wasn't allowed to visit her relative's house anymore and play with a cousin who is her best friend, Reed said.
"You'll hear a very sad little girl trying to cover up what happened because her family was upset,'' Reed said of the girl's interview with social workers.
Defense attorney Justin Glenn told jurors that the youngest accuser lied because her friend at school, who was a sexual abuse victim, received gifts like a phone when the allegations surfaced.
"She got a bunch of new stuff from her parents,'' Glenn said of the accuser's friend at school.
The girl later told her father she lied about the allegations "because she wanted some stuff,'' Glenn said.
The other girls are also lying to protect their relative, Glenn said.
"There's no corroborating evidence... There's no confession,'' Glenn said.
"How about they're just lying,'' Glenn said. "How about it doesn't make sense.''