desert hot springs suspects
Suspects Cynthia Fuentes and Michael Flaherty. (Photos from Desert Hot Springs Police Department)

Two suspects were in custody Saturday on charges of molesting an 18-month-old boy and using that child to create obscene pornography.

It’s not clear what relationship the two may have to each other or to the child.

One of the suspects is a woman from the small desert town of Coachella east of Palm Springs who allegedly took part in the molestation of the child, along with the creation and distribution of child pornography.

She was charged with numerous felonies Friday, including using a minor for obscene matter and possession of child pornography.

Cynthia Fuentes, 21, was arrested in Coachella Wednesday for allegedly molesting the young victim and taking part in the creation of child pornography along with Michael Flaherty, 31, of Desert Hot Springs, detective Christopher Tooth said.

Following a joint probe with Homeland Security Investigations, Desert Hot Springs police arrested Flaherty on Aug. 16 in Palm Springs and he was subsequently charged with several felonies, including lewd acts on a child, using a minor for obscene matter and possession of child pornography.

There was no information provided by police about the pornography and if the two suspects had tried to raise money from the alleged acts.

A criminal complaint alleges that the child in question — identified only as John Doe in court documents — was about 18 months old at the time of the alleged abuse.

Police did not say anything about the current whereabouts of the child.

Flaherty is being held in lieu of $1.5 million bail and is due back in court on Sept. 21 for a felony settlement conference.

Fuentes is being held on $2.5 million.

Police asked anyone with additional information regarding the case to contact Tooth at (760) 329-2904, ext. 352.

–City News Service

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.