Man arrested 7 years after impregnating girl, 12

Posted at 6:15 PM, Feb 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-17 00:07:53-05

A former Davenport resident who fled the country seven years ago when he impregnated a 12-year-old is now in custody, according to investigators.

Detectives caught Diego Mendez-Guzman recently when he applied for a visa and tried crossing the border back into the United States.

He has lived a free man in Mexico for the last seven years.

"When he found out that this 12-year-old child was pregnant, he was going to back to Mexico. He didn't want to stay here as bad as he thought he did," Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said.

The arrest affidavit says the girl was a runaway and in a vulnerable state. Guzman saw an opportunity.

They first met when the girl was walking to a friend's house in Davenport.

The case went to Detective Shane Robbins, who the agency considered a champion for children. Sadly, Robbins died in a car crash three years ago, but his fellow deputies never forgot the case.

"It frustrated him a lot that this guy fled to Mexico and got away," Judd said.

Mexican authorities recognized the warrant out for his arrest when he applied for the visa. As soon as he crossed the border into the states, detectives brought him into custody.

"Even though Detective Robbins was killed in a vehicle crash, he is still making a positive difference in our community," Judd said.

Today the victim is 19-years-old, and her child is seven.

Guzman is being extradited to the Polk County Jail.