MEDIA ADVISORYSeptember 13, 2013MOLESTER HAD PERSUADED FAMILY TO IGNORE HIS ABUSE SENTENCED TO 40 YEARSMedia Contact: Curtis T. Hill, Jr. 296-1888***A former Elkhart County businessman, Jose Bobby Rodriguez, was sentenced to 40 years by Superior Court 3 Judge George Biddlecome on September 5, 2013. During trial, the victim described the events underlying the four charged offenses as having occurred on different dates over a period of time. The mother and a sister told the jury that each had walked in on sexually inappropriate acts between the victim and Jose Bobby Rodriguez but had been persuaded by him to ignore what they had witnessed. The sister testified from that day on, she learned that she could talk to her mother about anything, except “the elephant in the room,” referring to the acts of molestation occurring between her stepfather and her older sister. And when she once again walked in on inappropriate behavior, she left without saying a thing.After an Elkhart County jury found him guilty on four counts of Class A offenses of molesting the child. Rodriquez was facing up to 50 years in prison on each count. During the September 5, 2013, sentencing hearing, Prosecutor Susan Snyder reminded the Court that Jose Bobby Rodriguez’s behavior was particularly perverse not only in the fact that the abuse continued over a long period of time, consisted of various forms of sexual molestation, was done in the presence of a sibling but because he used accusations and guile to convince family members to ignore what they had witnessed so as to continue his criminal behavior, isolating her from her family’s protection and destroying the family relationships.Ultimately Judge George Biddlecome sentenced Jose Bobby Rodriguez to forty years at the Indiana Department of Corrections. ***Under Indiana law, all persons arrested for a criminal offense are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.