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posted: 6/18/2010 12:01 AM

No bond reduction man accused of growing pot, abusing children

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  • Gustavo Rodriguez

    Gustavo Rodriguez


An Algonquin Township man arrested last week after police investigating claims he abused his children found 14 marijuana plants growing in his home remained behind bars at the McHenry County jail Thursday after a judge refused to lower his bond.

Judge Sharon Prather denied Gustavo Rodriguez's request she cut his $50,000 bail in half after a prosecutor told the court the admitted gang member confessed to beating his three children during the June 7 incident that led to his arrest, and has since violated an order of protection obtained by their mother.

"The defendant stated he had anger issues and uses marijuana to calm himself," Assistant McHenry County State's Attorney David Metnick said. "He admitted he struck his children. He has a history of violence and he is not likely to comply with (court) orders because he has already violated the order of protection."

McHenry County Sheriff's deputies arrested Rodriguez, 32, on June 7 at his home in the 1400 block of Cary-Algonquin Road. Deputies had been called to the residence by his longtime girlfriend, who reported that Rodriguez had abused the couple's three children.

While on the scene, authorities said, deputies found 14 cannabis plants growing inside the residence, along with 30 grams of processed marijuana and equipment needed to grow marijuana indoors.

He was arrested and charged with three felony drug charges - possession of cannabis with intent to deliver, possession of cannabis and production of cannabis plants - and three counts of domestic battery.

The domestic battery charges, all misdemeanors, allege Rodriguez pushed, kicked and grabbed one of his daughters, slapped her younger sister and picked his son up by his shirt and made a fist as if he was going to punch the boy.

Rodriguez also faces two counts of violating an order of protection, alleging he called his girlfriend twice June 9, one day after she obtained the protective order. Prosecutors added another new misdemeanor charge Thursday, accusing Rodriguez of possessing a rifle in his home without a firearm owner's identification card.

Rodriguez, who faces up to five years in prison if convicted on the felony drug charges, is scheduled to return to court July 6 for likely arraignment.