SAN JOSE (KRON) – On Friday the San Jose Police Department announced the arrest of three suspects for the death of a 3-year-old girl killed in a church exorcism.

As KRON4 previously reported, 3-year-old Arely died at a small church at 1094 2nd Street in San Jose, according to prosecutors. Paramedics found Arley’s lifeless body on the floor of the church on Sept. 24, 2021.

The girl’s family “believed the child was possessed by a demon and were at the church praying for her,” Santa Clara County deputy district attorney Rebekah Wise wrote in court documents.

San Jose police wrote, “During the course of the investigation San Jose Police Department Homicide Detectives identified three suspects responsible for the death of the victim: the victim’s mother, Claudia Hernandez-Santos, the victim’s uncle Rene Aaron Hernandez-Santos, and the victim’s grandfather Rene Trigueros Hernandez.”

Rene Trigueros Hernandez was the leader of the church and self-proclaimed pastor.

On Jan. 31, Claudia Hernandez-Santos was arrested and charged with child abuse leading to the death of her daughter. On May 11, Rene Aaron Hernandez-Santos and Rene Trigueros Hernandez were also arrested and charged in connection to the young girl’s death.

The San Jose Police Department is holding a news conference at 11 a.m. today. KRON ON will stream the press conference live.

KRON ON is streaming live

Claudia Hernandez-Santos is the homicide victim’s mother. (SJPD mug shot)
Rene Hernandez-Santos is the homicide victim’s uncle. (SJPD mug shot)
Rene Trigueros Hernandez is the homicide victim’s grandfather and the church’s leader.

Anyone with information about this case or similar incidents is urged to contact Detective Sergeant Vallejo or Detective Harrington of the homicide unit at (408) 277-4166, or email