55°FOvercastFull Forecast

Not guilty verdict in sex abuse trial

The jury deliberated for more than 2 hours on the seven charges facing a former Amboy man

Published: Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 6:00 a.m. CDT • Updated: Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 6:22 a.m. CDT
Ignacio Sarabia

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.

Get breaking news sent to your phone. Sign up for text alerts from Sauk Valley Media!

National video

Reader Poll

There’s a movement afoot in the Illinois Legislature to name former President Barack Obama’s birthday (Aug. 4) as a legal holiday in Illinois. What do you think?
Good idea
Bad idea
Not sure
No opinion