DIXON – Tears ran down Ignacio Sarabia’s cheeks as the final verdict on all seven charges of predatory sexual abuse he had faced were read by Judge Daniel A. Fish on Friday: “Not guilty.”
After 5 emotional days of witness testimony, evidence presentations, and arguments, the Lee County jury took about 21/2 hours Friday to decide the fate of the 50-year-old Amboy man. Sarabia has faced the charges since July 2010. He was accused of sexually abusing two girls, then ages 10 and 12, multiple times between December 2008 and August 2009.
He was found not guilty on all counts Friday.
Sarabia stood to hug members of his family as a free man, while still more tears streamed down the faces of those on the plaintiffs’ side.
“Ignacio has always maintained his innocence from day one,” defense attorney Andrew Bollman said. “He’s been in jail over 1,100 days. It’s a wonderful day for freedom and justice.”
Assistant Attorney General Vincenzo Chimera was unavailable for comment Friday after the verdict.