Corey Cotrell, left. Jose Rodriguez, right
A McLean County judge failed to revoke bail for Jose Rodriquez, the 28-year-old man from Honduras living in the country illegally who on Monday pleaded guilty to killing 39-year-old Corey Cottrell in Bloomington in a hit-and-run last June.
Rodriguez pleaded guilty to leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in a death. It’s a Class 1 felony under Illinois law, punishable by up to 15 years in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for Wednesday, April 8.
Corey’s mother, sister and two daughters have every right to be concerned that Rodriguez will disappear – potentially back to his native Honduras – before his sentencing in April, says Chicago’s Brian McCann, a member of Advocates for Victims of Illegal Alien Crime (AVIAC).
“Rodriguez is a clear flight risk,” McCann wrote in an email to Prairie State Wire. “I have advised the family to file a complaint with the Judicial Inquiry Board (JIB) against the judge [Scott Drazewski] in McLean County. Public safety was clearly compromised by this judge.”
McCann should know. In 2011, he lost a brother, William “Dennis” McCann, when 36-year-old Saul Chavez, believed to be living in the country illegally, was allegedly driving drunk on Kedzie Avenue in the Logan Square neighborhood in June of that year.
According to reports, Chavez, struck McCann, 66, as he was crossing Kedzie. Instead of stopping, Chavez drove over McCann and then dragged him.
Chavez eventually stopped the car and was apprehended by an off-duty police officer when he tried to flee on foot. His BAC was 0.29, over three times the legal limit. He had been arrested for a DUI before.
In a December 2011 letter to Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, McCann wrote: “The offender, Saul Chavez, was charged with aggravated DUI and reckless homicide after the June incident with a $250,000 bond assigned. Assistant State’s Attorney O’Connor also assured us that ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] had a hold on this offender and the family would not have to worry about a flight risk.”
But Chavez was released, and he did disappear. McCann cites a September 2011 move by the Cook County Board to change its policy for responding to ICE detainees. In November 2011, McCann received a recorded message from the Cook County Prison telling him that Chavez had been released.