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updated: 7/26/2011 7:03 AM

Elgin child abuse verdict coming Aug. 1

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  • Ricardo Robledo-Espino

    Ricardo Robledo-Espino


A Kane County judge will announce Aug. 1 whether a 29-year-old Elgin man is guilty of breaking his infant stepdaughter's legs.

Ricardo Robledo-Espino is accused of aggravated battery to a child; Judge Patricia Golden said she needs to review transcripts and more than 100 pages of her own notes to determine Espino's guilt or innocence.

Prosecutors have argued that he used enough force in an attempt to quiet the 8-week-old baby on April 3, 2010, when he pulled her toward him while she was lying on a bed.

If convicted, Espino, of the 300 block of McClure Avenue, faces six to 30 years in prison; probation is not an option.

Defense attorney Daniel Radakovich contended that Espino was a loving father of a child who was not biologically his. Radakovich noted that Espino was trying to help authorities determine what happened to the baby and didn't necessarily confess to causing her injuries when interviewed by Elgin police on April 17, 2010.

"Things are not always as simple and straightforward as people would like to think. Things are not always as linear as people would like to think," Radakovich said, adding no one knows what really caused the baby's injuries. "There is really nothing in here in (Espino's) statement that I would characterize as an admission that he knowingly caused this great bodily harm."

But Assistant State's Attorney Debra Bree argued there was someone who knew what happened: Espino.

She noted the Epsino told Elgin police in April 2010 that he believed he caused the injuries, but on the witness stand earlier this month claimed he "gently" pulled the baby toward him.

"These injuries are so indicative of child abuse, they could not be accidental," Bree said. "(Espino) knew you should not pull a baby by the legs."

Bree also questioned by Espino didn't tell a battery of doctors and nurses and even the infant's mother what happened until two weeks after the baby first went to the doctor.

Several doctors and child abuse experts also testified earlier this month that the injuries were consistent with child abuse and not caused by child birth.

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