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Judge Drops Bond in Troy Dem's Sex Case

The committeewoman for the Troy Democrats charged with having sex with a teenage boy had her bond lowered by $150,000.

The 76-year-old boyfriend of a 32-year-old woman charged with setting up a sex date with a 15-year-old boy believes he can spring his young lover from jail now that a judge lowered her bond.

"I'm working on it now to get that," veteran weekly newspaperman John Gabriel said of the $10,000 he needs to bail lady friend Margarita Hernandez out of jail.

Judge Richard Schoenstedt reduced Hernandez's bond from $250,000 to $100,000 Wednesday. She only needs to post 10 percent of that for her release from the Will County jail.

"Margarita has very substantial savings," said Gabriel, who like his live-in girlfriend is a precinct committeeman for the Troy Township Democrats.

While Hernandez might have money stashed away, Gabriel said he can't get at it. And he claims to have no cash himself, choosing to get by with just the "clothes on (his) back" to discourage people from suing him.

Until he figures a way to access Hernandez's savings, she will remain in jail, where she was taken following her arrest Thursday on charges she had sex with the teen.

Joliet Police Chief Mike Trafton Hernandez and the boy planned the tryst at her home on Joliet's far west side. But Gabriel claims his girlfriend was framed by enemies he made over the years while working for Joliet-area weekly newspapers.

"Whoever did this needs to be exposed," Gabriel said.

Trafton also said FBI agents raided the home where Gabriel and Hernandez live as part of an investigation into the possible production of child pornography.

FBI spokeswoman Joan Hyde said she cannot comment on—or even confirm the existence of—an investigation conducted by her agency unless it results in criminal charges.

In court Tuesday, Hernandez's attorney, Steve Landis, argued that she is not a flight risk, that she has three sisters, two brothers and a mother living in Cicero, and that she has strong ties to the community.

Landis also pointed out Hernandez's connection to the Troy Township Democrats, said she is on the board of the Will County Historical Society and that she is an I&M Canal Tour Guide.

Not only that, but Hernandez volunteers for an organization that provides horseback rides to handicapped children, Landis said, and has won awards at her job with Southwest Airlines for performance and perfect attendance.

Landis went on to knock the case against Hernandez, saying prosecutors won't be able to prove it, and asked Schoenstedt to put the bond at $500.

As a condition of lowering the bond, Judge Schoenstedt forbade Hernandez from contacting anyone under 18 or doing any volunteer work out of concern that she might run into a boy or girl, possibly on a horse or the along the I&M Canal.

Schoenstedt did permit Hernandez to return to work for Southwest if she gets out of jail.

Justice October 20, 2012 at 04:20 PM
I am also sure many people were involved but I also know that alot of these people were also victims of the old man John, he is a manipulating sick person that made all these people believe they were serving God by the acts they were commiting.... I feel sorry for Margarita that had to live and be influenced by this man for so many years and I know that he is the reason why she ended up being and doing what she did!!!! John preys on people like her and the rest of the victims that are naive and vulnerable to get what he wants... All the truth will come out and the guilty will be punished. Public Record/John your words do not bother me because I know the truth and who are really the victims and who really are the guilty. You wanted to betray the people that trusted you, now pay the consequences! I'm not a weak minded person like the people you used and brainwashed to do your sick dirty work, I am not afraid of you and I will NOT sweep this under the rug. Will I also be damned if I open my mouth just like you told everyone else to keep them quiet. Why don't you call me John so we can talk, you have my number!!!! LOL...
Justice October 20, 2012 at 05:15 PM
Oh wow, I didn't even read what you commented... Now the truth is coming out, huh John, now you really admitting what was going on with Margarita... Now that you are done using all these ladies for your self pleasure and manipulating them just like you did to Margarita, now you ready to turn the tables on them huh! you gotta put it on someone so it doesn't all fall on you!!! John who are you talking about?, please let me know, maybe now they can really see your true colors and they can see the truth behind all these lies you put in their head!!! It's really sad how all these girls fell for your lies.... Everyone knows you are the mastermind to what has happened, I can't wait to see you behind bars!
Maggie October 23, 2012 at 04:24 AM
I am praying n fasting that the God all mighty Jesus reveals all truth and the masks come off this people that are sick ... Justice wilk be dobe in your name Jesus you never lost a caseLord n there are innocemt children involved
picked the wrong kid November 01, 2012 at 02:42 AM
lol wow...dnt make it seem like i care who goes down for this....i hope everybody involved will see justice.....i know i sleep good at night....DO YOU???!!! SINCE YOU KNOW SO MUCH WHY DNT U HELP THIS INVESTIGATION???
Your Future Baby Daddy February 02, 2013 at 02:25 AM
All I have to say is where were these types of teachers when I was growing up, I never remember seeing stuff like this in my teen years !!!

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