15 Years for Illegal Alien Convicted of Predatory Criminal Sexual Assault of a Child

A press release from McHenry County State’s Attorney Lou Bianchi:


Louis A. Bianchi, McHenry County State’s Attorney, announces that Rafael Rodriguez-
Sanchez, 41, of Totunga, Mexico, was sentenced to 15 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections for the offense of Predatory Criminal Sexual Assault of a Child.

This case was investigated by the McCullom Lake Police Department.

The defendant pled guilty as charged to the sexual penetration of a child under the age of 13 years old.

DNA in the case proved that the defendant sexually penetrated the victim.

This case was prosecuted by Robert Zalud and David Johnston of the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office.

The defendant will be required to serve 85% of the sentencing term pursuant to truth in sentencing provisions.

= = = = =
Former Sgt. Greg Pyle faces ten such charges, consecutively, according to the McHenry County State’s Attorney’s Office.

CFI Pot Bubbling

The McHenry County Transportation Committee minus Sandy Salgado.

The McHenry County Transportation Committee minus Sandy Salgado, who was absent.

I attended my first McHenry County Board Transportation Committee meeting this morning.

Todd Bright, the lead man from Randall Road consultant firm TranSystems, gave an update on the project that Chairwoman Anna May Miller is vigorously pushing for a September 3rd decision on.

Todd Bright

Todd Bright

Two options are emerging:

  • a Continuous Flow Intersection (CFI) with more “friendly” access points.
  • a more traditional intersection with two left turn lanes in each direction on Randall Road with outside lanes like the right turn lane in front of Walgreens (which could be used to turn right or go through the intersection), plus triple left turn lanes on Algonquin Road in both directions. (See Florida DOT study on the topic here.)

The reason for three left turn lanes is that having only two left turn lanes would not allow enough cars to be stacked without eliminating access to Jewel, for example.  Access for trucks to supply Caputo’s would also be impossible with only two left turn lanes.

Design of triple left turn lanes in Florida.

Design of triple left turn lanes in Florida.

Randall Road, on the other hand, has room for very long stacking lanes for those wishing to turn left.

These plans will be shown and discussed with three of the corner stakeholders “next week,” according to Bright.  He said the report would be ready “in mid-September.”

Intersection of Florida's US 441 and NW 7th Avenue.

Intersection of Florida’s US 441 and NW 7th Avenue.

Nick Provenzano asked when the alternatives would be shown to Committee members.

“Why [them] first?” he asked.

Chairwoman Miller then commented.

She pointed out that the CFI idea was the original “preferred alternative.”

“The County Board agreed.”

Triple left lanes at SR 826 and A1A in Florida.

Triple left lanes at SR 826 and A1A in Florida.

Then she pointed out that there had been significant push back and the decision had been made to analyze the improvements further.

Now, she said, “we have the feedback.”

Before presenting the findings of TranSystem, Miller explained that she wanted “community support” to be a [large] part of the “matrix” that will be presented.

“My concern is that if they have alternatives…we as the Transportation Committee should be keenly aware of those alternatives,” Provenzano replied.

“Can we go to the [stakeholder presentation]?” he asked.

Anna May Miller

Anna May Miller

The answer from Miller was in the negative.

It won’t be an open meeting.

She did say that she and Vice Chairwoman Paula Yensen had been regularly briefed on the work that TranSystems was doing.

But not the rest of the Committee, it was apparent.

They have been left out of the loop.

The stakeholders at the meeting with TranSystems will represent people from three of the four corners of the intersection of Algonquin and Randall Roads, according to County Administrator Peter Austin.

“I’m insulted we’re not going to see this” before the Committee meeting,” Provenzano added.

“There’s a lot of stakeholders.

“We are the number on stakeholder.  We’ve been elected by 300,000 people.”

Diane Evertsen

Diane Evertsen

“I would agree on that,” Diane Evertsen said.

She compared the process with reading about some County business in the Northwest Herald before learning about it from County officials.

“That puts us in a very difficult situation.”

“And I don’t disagree with it,” Miller rejoined.

“We had a meeting with Management Services (Committee) and found information [about it] on a non-traditional media site,” she continued, rather obviously referring to. but not mentioning, McHenry County Blog’s article entitled,

The Humongous Building in Crystal Lake that County Officials Want to Buy for a Salt Dome

Then Miller got back to the subject at hand, the Randall Road project.

Referring to criticisms of the proposal approved by the County Board, Miller said, “We saw value in some of their challenges.  The decision on the preferred alternative will come from this community [input].”

Paula Yensen and Nick Chirikos

Paula Yensen and Nick Chirikos

“[This is a ] hot button issue,” said Democrat Nick Chirikos.

“We’re coming into election season.

“We see a web site now that has a lot of [false] information.

“I try to push back and all I get is extreme [comments].”

“I can’t meet with TranSystems.

“Is this CFI dead or not?

The corner of Algonquin and Randall Roads.

The corner of Algonquin and Randall Roads going west on Algonquin, where three left lanes are one suggestion to improve traffic flow.

“As far as I know right now, the CFI is still the preferred [Choice].”

“It’s getting very tense out there.”

Chirikos contented that the County was “not going to spend $135 million.

“It’s not going to all their money.

“We need to address those concerns publicly.  We need to be [out front].”

“I believe my role is to shepherd this process and make sure of its integrity,” Miller replied.

She urged relying on “the science of engineering.”

One of the McHenry County Blog articles that Anna May Miller says will not influence her vote on the Randall Road project.

One of the McHenry County Blog articles that Anna May Miller says will not influence her vote on the Randall Road project.

Again referring to McHenry County Blog without naming it, Miller said,

“I”m not going to be forced to make my decision on non-traditional media.

“On September 3rd we are going to [see the results of TranSystems study] and then [we'll] be taking it out to the community as a whole.

“Other County Board members have submarined the process,” she said and closed discussion.

“And, moving on.

“I’m closing the discussion on the subject at this time.”

= = = = =
Related articles:

Facebook Post on Stop Randall Road Highway Robbery Draws Response from District 1 Democrat

One of the folks who is opposing the $135 million revamp of three and a half miles of Randall Road, Karen Tirio posted on Facebook.

You can see her post below, as well as a reply from District 1 County Board member Nick Chirikos:

Karen Mueller Tirio‎ Randall Road Robbery
August 13 at 4:09pm · Edited ·

NOW’S YOUR CHANCE TO LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD: A website has been set up by the Committee Against Highway Waste.

Citizens against the Randall Road Project, (that will cost ALL MCHENRY COUNTY HOUSEHOLD’s approx $1200) can go to the website and instantly email all of the Transportation Committee Members with a click of a few buttons. Enter your email so you are notified of upcoming exposés, discussions, meetings, and voting on this subject. VOTING IS COMING UP SOON SO CITIZENS MUST ACT NOW!!

There is even a short two line note. You may customize it or use the longer version below.

Go To:


Longer form Example of Objection:


As a citizen of McHenry County, I don’t want families of McHenry County’s taxes raised to support the Randall Road Project. I don’t believe the current proposals represent a good value for the taxpayers of this county. Our citizens are already taxed to the brink and this is why we have a decline in population. We are the 25th highest Real Estate Tax paying county in the whole Nation!!!! Property values have plummeted with no recover in site. I’m asking you to be a good steward of the Taxpayer Dollars and strongly urge you to VOTE NO to the Randall Road Project!

Jane or Joe Citizen
123 Your Street
Town, State, Zip

It’s true. The plan calls for $13 million to put in a “Continuous Flow Intersection.” This is not only a BAD fix for the problem (the only thing that will continuously flow is businesses, out of business and out of the County), it’s also outrageously expensive. The other CFIs that have been built…
Like · Comment · Share

Nick Chirikos

Hi. Nick Chirikos here.

Nick Chirikos

Nick Chirikos

I am one of the District 1 representatives for our County Board.

I read Ms. Tirio’s commentary on the Randall Road project and have to say it is mostly untrue, at least from what information I have been seeing.

If you have been attending the Transportation Committee meetings for the last 1-1/2 years, you would know that this project is only in its second stage of design development, and nowhere near the point where funding is allocated.

The CFI concept was NEVER CHOSEN as the final design (as is stated in Tirio’s website).

It was considered as the “preferred alternative” earlier this year, but our new CMAP data was just released showing an 8.2% decline in population estimates, so other, less invasive alternatives will be considered.

Another rampant rumor is that McHenry County residents are footing the bill for this project.

In fact, most of the funding is Federal and motor fuel tax, as are all major road improvement projects.

Thanks to Karen for putting my email and phone # out there for folks to have. I welcome all communications on this and other issues.

I would just urge all who are interested to DO YOUR HOMEWORK and not accept hype and innuendo as fact.

This is a complicated issue, worthy of serious and objective consideration.

Nothing is decided, and much has yet to be studied. Please feel free to contact me!
14 hrs

Karen Mueller Tirio

Hi Nick, you’re one of the board members who recently voted Against Transparency, aren’t you?

AND Federal and Motor fuel tax is paid by us!

Do you think that’s mystery money that someone else comes up with and GIFTS to the citizens???

Someone’s been b…See More
11 hrs · Edited

Karen Mueller Tirio

Nick, are you in favor of this huge project or not? I

read your whole post but I don’t see where you actually take a position.

To summarize your post, your stance is that “Nothing has been decided yet, so whatever you say is wrong.”

Another cold hard…See More
11 hrs

County Board Besieged by RV-Boat-Trailer Owners

Hasn’t been anything in the Northwest Herald about the McHenry County Board’s attempt to impose restrictions on recreational vehicles and boats, so I guess the efforts of McHenry County Board member John Hammerand of Wonder Lake’s District 4 can be credited with the turnout.

The audience of disturbed unincorporated residents at the McHenry County Board meeting Tuesday night.

The audience of disturbed unincorporated residents at the McHenry County Board meeting Tuesday night.  Photo credit:  Nick Provenzano.

Standing room only

County Board member Nick Provenzano said,

“You can drop the Schaumburg ordinance into McHenry County but it doesn’t make us Schaumburg – stop trying to change the rural nature of our county.”

Two boats were in this driveway.

Two boats were in this driveway.

I was at the YMCA today for a preview of construction progress and drove home through the Crystal Lake Manor.  The Manor is surrounded by the City of Crystal Lake, but unincorporated, so would be subject to the proposed zoning restrictions with regard to RV, boat and camper storage.

There's a boat and a trailer here.

There’s a boat and a trailer here.

You can see what I saw as a drove the couple of blocks.

This boat is in the backyard of a corner lot.  Maybe it could legally be stored here over the winter.

This boat is in the backyard of a corner lot. Maybe it could legally be stored here over the winter.

= = = = =
See the following articles:

In politics, intensity counts. I predict the County Board drastically modifies the section in question.

Mary McClellan Joins John Hammerand in Opposition to RV-Boat Storage Restrictions

McH boat in drivesay
Someone sent me a link to this house in Holiday Hills.

The address matches where McHenry County Board member Mary McClellan lives.

I thought she lives in the Village of Holiday Hills and would not be affected by the proposed restriction on recreational vehicles, but I have been told by a fellow Board member that she lives in unincorporated McHenry County, hence, would be.

Sshe does not support the Unified Development Ordinance proposal.

“I have already submitted a proposed amendment to take out any such restriction.

“I don’t believe in government interfering with private property rights.

“I will not support the UDO in its current form.”

McClellan is the Republican candidate for County Clerk this fall. She is running unopposed.

NWH Makes Big Deal about Jack Franks’ “Do Little” Bill

The Northwest Herald ran a big article on page three about Governor Pat Quinn signing State Rep. Jack Franks’ bill to “allow” consolidation of two insignificant tax districts in McHenry County.

See the article entitled,

Jack Franks’ Push for Local Governments to Consolidate Allows Two Cemetery Districts to Die

The part of the Jack Franks' bill signing story on page 4 of the Northwest Herald.

The part of the Jack Franks’ bill signing story on page 4 of the Northwest Herald.

On the jump page, the NWH headline is

“Only two McHenry County taxing bodies could be affected by new law”

Those two tax districts are:

  • the Nunda Township Cemetery District
  • the Richmond Township Cemetery District

The amount billed by the two tax districts this year was $44,348.05.

The total tax bill of all tax districts in McHenry County was $797,394,337.99.
= = = = =
To say that this bill is not a big deal is an understatement.

I can’t access the NWH web site or I would have linked to the article.

Pre-Dawn Sexual Assault in Downtown Harvard

A press release from the Harvard Police Department:



On Tuesday, 08/19/14 at approximately 4:52 am, Harvard Police was contacted by Swedish American Hospital, Belvidere reference a sexual related assault.

100 block of East Front Street in Harvard, Illinois.

100 block of East Front Street in Harvard, Illinois.

It was reported the victim (f-22 yoa) was sexually assaulted in the 100 blk of E. Front Street earlier this morning.

Under Investigation.

Chicago Police Officer Who Ran Plates for FRG Castle Owner Neighbor Loses Her Job

Jennifer Martin, a friend of Fox River Grove Castle owner’s across the street neighbor, has lost her job as a Chicago Police Patrol Officer for using the state license plate data base for non-official purposes.

The July 17th vote was 6-2 by the Chicago Police Board.

Fox River Grove's Bettendorf Castle from a corner of the lot.

Fox River Grove’s Bettendorf Castle from a corner of the lot.

Here’s the first charge of which she was found guilty:

Count I: Between approximately October 2010 and May 2011, or on one or more dates therein, Police Officer Jennifer J. Martin conducted one or more Law Enforcement Agencies DataSystem (“LEADS”) inquiries on one or more license plate numbers without an official police purpose and/or for personal purposes, and/or subsequently disseminated information acquired from one or more LEADS inquiries to Ms. Diana Durso, a non-Department member who is not legally authorized to have access to the LEADS information, thereby violating the LEADSpolicy (Illinois Administrative Code, Title 20, Section 1240.80).

The decision says,

“Officer Martin stipulated and testified to facts that establish by a preponderance of rhe evidence that between October 2010 and May 2011 she ran multiple license plates for Ms. Diana Durso, a family friend and private citizen in Fox River Grove, who was opposed to a potential zoning change regarding the Bettendorf Castle in Fox River Grove.”

The State law broken is Illinois Administrative Code, Title 20, Section 1240.80(d) states in pertinent part:

“LEADS data shall not be disseminated to any individual or organization that is not legally authorized to have access to the information.”

A footnote further explains the rules for using LEADS:

“LEADS is a statewide secure and confidential computerized telecommunications system maintained by the Illinois State Police designed to provide the Illinois criminal justice community with access to computerized justice-related information at both the state and national levels. LEADS is governed by very strict regulations due to the highly sensitive, personal and private information contained in LEADS. LEADS policies and regulations are in place to protect privacy, civil liberties and the safety of private citizens. (Tr. 100-102, 108-109).”

The decision brushes aside Martin’s defense, that “Durso, was afraid that she was being followed (or was paranoid about being followed) by ‘different people, in different vehicles … at different times…’”

The Board’s decision states,

“Multiple inquiries of several different license plates took place over a prolonged period of time, which evinces that it is more likely than not that Officer Martin ran these plates for a family friend who was involved with a dispute with a neighbor in Fox River Grove, rather than for any legitimate police purpose.”

Martin was also charged with violating Federal law, specifically, the Driver’s Protection Act of 1994 (18 USC §2722 and/or §2721).

A pertinent section of the 1994 law reads,

“It shall be unlawful for any person knowingly to obtain or disclose personal information, from a motor vehicle record, for any use not permitted under section 2721(b) of this title.-”

The Board then finds, “None of the ‘permissible uses’ under §2721(b) of the Driver’s Protection Act of 1994, authorized the dissemination of the personal information Officer Martin shared with Diana Durso, a private citizen.”

There are other charges about bringing the Chicago Police Department into disrepute, not implementing police, taking action for personal gain or influence, disobeying an order, etc.

The Board found that Martin’s actions

  • jeopardized the Chicago Department’s ability to utilized the LEADS network (“She cast the Department in a bad light not only with the Illinois State Police, which was made aware of an allegation that a Chicago Police Officer inappropriately conducted LEADS inquiries and demanded a CPD investigation, but also brought discredit upon the Department with the Fox River Grove Police Department.”)
  • “Her conduct violated both Federal Law and State Regulations.”

Testimony was taken from fellow officers that praised Martin’s work. She had no prior disciplinary history and ” 41 complimentary awards and recognitions.”

Nevertheless, the Board stated,

“However, Officer Martin’s accomplishments as a police officer, her complimentary history, and the lack of prior disciplinary history, do not mitigate the seriousness of her misconduct. No police officer can be allowed to remain on the job when she disseminates the personal information of many citizens in violation of federal law, the Illlinois Administrative Code, and Chicago Police Department policy.

“The Board finds that the Respondent’s conduct is sufficiently serious to constitute a substantial shortcoming that renders her continuance in her office detrimental to the discipline and efficiency of the service of the Chicago Police Department, and is something that the law recognizes as good cause for her to no longer occupy her office.”

The investigation by Internal Affairs took a year and a half.

= = = = =

Attorney Robert Hanlon was involved in this case on behalf of Castle owner Ralph Casten.

The Federal law cited is the same one being used by Hanlon against Undersheriff Andy Zinke. The story is here.  Yesterday, this article updated the status of that suit.

RV-Boat Restrictions Planned by County Board

If you store your recreational vehicle or boat in your driveway in the off season, you are in for some serious changes.

The McHenry County Board is considering a Unified Development Ordinance.

One of the significant differences between today’s rules and those proposed concerns the storage of recreational vehicles.

If the new zoning ordinance passes, you won’t be able to store them in your driveway.

There are nuances, so read the proposed language yourself:

RV Storage Proposal UDO

To see how widespread the practice of storing RV’s and boats is in Wonder Lake, I drove a block on West Lake Shore Drive and up one street to Thompson Road and, then, south past the bank.

I’ll intersperse what I found with what McHenry County Board member John Hammerand, who alerted me to the change, has sent constituents, which starts below the next photo.

WL Airstream

The airstream at this house on the lakefront is parked in its backyard. (The front yard of lakefront property is considered to be on the lake.) The trailer seems to be parked in its driveway.

Thank you so much for contacting me..  I definitely plan to vote against this ordinance!
WL Boat trailer + grilll The article below [see here] was posted a week ago, when I first found out about this issue and asked to have it posted.

WL Boat trailer + pickup

Since then, I have been working unincorporated areas with a flyer, trying to get the word out.

WL boat trailer 3

It would make a huge difference if you could attend Tuesday’s Meeting and speak during Public Comments.
WL boat trailer pontoon
The matter will not be voted on that night, but it may give the impetus needed to change the ordinance before adoption

At 6 pm during the Committee of the Whole meeting, we will be reviewing the last few chapters of the UDO.
WL boat trailers

There is a place on the agenda for public comment – the standard comment time is 3 minutes.
WL trailer 2

The County Board meeting will begin at 7 pm - public comments come early in the meeting following Zoning and Plats.

WL trailer +2 cars

So Tuesday the public will have two opportunities to address the Board, tho the attendance of the Committee of the Whole meetings has been weak.  You are more likely to have the most County Board Members at the 7 pm meeting.

WL Trailer 3 Give me a call if you have further questions at 815-728-0700
WL Trailer 4

I hope to give you a call to answer any questions you may have.  I also suggest you contact other county board members – they don’t seem to understand the issues.

Michelle Aavang   815-648-4210           Bob Martens           815-675-6353

Yvonne Barners    847-516-2719          Mary McCann         815-568-1061

Nick Chirikos        847-658-3434          Mary McClellan      815-482-5693

Sue Draffkorn      815-653-6057          Anna May Miller     847-639-5112

Diane Evertsen    815-943-3298           Bob Nowak              847-977-5516

Joe Gottemoller   815-382-9940           Nick Provenzano     815-355-8540

Jim Heisler          815-404-4775          Sandy Salgado       815-276-2317

Tina Hill              815-347-4222          Carolyn Schofield    815-455-9550

John Jung           815-338-6201          Ersel Schuster          815-338-2207

Ken Koehler        815-459-7841           Mike Skala               847-669-3804

Donna Kurtz       815-788-0632           Mike Walkup           815-477-8978

Paula Yensen     847-669-0507

See below for information on the Planning and Zoning Committee members

John Hammerand 815-728-0700

GOP Sets Fundraiser

September 10th is the date set by the McHenry County Republican Central Committee for it first fundraiser under the new leadership.

Keynoter will be State Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka.

Illinois Republican State Central Committee Chairman Tim Schneider will also speak.

The price is $100 unless one is a Republican Precinct Committeeman.  They get in for $15 and can bring a guest for the same price. Checks should be sent to PO Box 1378, McHenry, Il 60051.

The event will be held at the Lake in the Hills Airport.

GOP Invite 9-10-14