Kennewick man arrested for alleged sexual assault after child tells adult

A Kennewick man was jailed Sunday on charges of sexually assaulting a child after his alleged victim alerted adults.

Louis Noberto Mendez, 41, was arrested at 11 p.m. Sunday and booked into the Benton County Jail without bail on a 72-hour hold.

Kennewick Police Sgt. Aaron Clem said the young victim was known to Mendez. The child reported the assault to a family friend, who took the child to a local hospital Sunday. The hospital notified law enforcement.

The child is being cared for by family.

Clem praised the child for telling an adult.

“It’s always important for victims and family and friends to be brave enough to step forward so those responsible can be held accountable,” he said.

Prosecutors have until Wednesday to file charges.

Wendy Culverwell writes about local government and politics, focusing on how those decisions affect your life. She also covers key business and economic development changes that shape our community. Her restaurant column and health inspection reports are reader favorites. She’s been a news reporter in Washington and Oregon for 25 years.