A California megachurch-ordained elder was arrested for the murder and torture of her adopted 11-year-old daughter. In connection to the torture and death the young girl suffered, the woman’s parents were also arrested.
Deputies responded to a distress call at a Spring Valley home in San Diego County in the early hours of Aug. 30. 11-year-old Arabella McCormack was rushed by authorities to a local hospital. She was later declared dead.
Deputies met Arabella McCormack’s adoptive father, Brian McCormack, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent, shortly after the girl’s suicide. McCormack is believed to have committed suicide in front of deputies.
The sheriff’s office stated that detectives discovered signs of child abuse during the investigation. A spokesperson for the police said that the girl had been covered in bruises and suffered from “severe levels” of malnourishment.
The cause of her death has not been determined by a medical examiner.
The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department detained Arabella McCormack’s grandmother and mother on Monday.
According to the San Diego Sheriff’s Department, Leticia McCormack (49), was charged with murder and three counts each of torture and willful cruelty. Stanley Tom, McCormack’s 75-year-old father, was also charged with murder, three charges of torture, and three counts of willful cruelty to children. Adella Tom (70), was charged with three counts each of torture and three of willful cruelty towards a child.
Leticia and Brian McCormack fostered Arabella at the beginning of 2017 before she was adopted by the couple.
Arabella had two older sisters aged 6 and 7. They were placed with foster families after her death.
According to a complaint, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported that Leticia McCormack (49), and her parents Adella and Stanley Tom tortured McCormack’s three daughters for five and a quarter years. This culminated in the death of Arabella McCormack in August.
McCormack was an elder at Rock Church in San Diego.
A spokesperson for Rock Church stated that it was working to revoke McCormack’s ordination.
USA Today was told by The Rock Church:
We are still grieving for Arabella and her sisters. We are sorry for the pain and loss that their loved ones are going through. All those who are grieving send their deepest condolences. We are thinking of each one. We hope justice will be done for Arabella and her sister. We pray that God’s grace and love will bring healing and comfort. Leticia is no longer in the Rock’s official relationship.
McCormack’s profile was removed from the megachurch website on Thursday.