Itâ??s a day Ruben Gonzales will never forget after a jury of nine women and three men found him not guilty on all counts of criminal sexual conduct. Soon after, Gonzales embraced his wife and friends.
â??The juryâ??s verdict is not guilty,â?? said Judge Janis Burgess.
During closing arguments, the defense said the victims' story continually changed, and the victims accused Gonzales out of spite.
â??You heard it from their own mouths. They thought that Ruben would be gone and that Grammie would kick him out,â?? said Gonzalesâ??s attorney Beth LaCosse.
The prosecution argued that the girls were telling the truth, and Gonzales should have been found guilty on all counts.
â??They both said I donâ??t lie and Iâ??m not lying. They want the bad situation resolved; they want Ruben to stop doing what he was doing,â?? said Ontonagon County Prosecuting Attorney James Jessup.
After the verdict was reached, the prosecution said they felt the case was presented well.
â??Iâ??m disappointed, obviously, in the verdict. I believe what the girls are saying, but the jury obviously had problems with that. Coming to a verdict beyond a reasonable doubt is very difficult to do, and sometimes itâ??s a hard choice to make,â?? Jessup said.
Meanwhile the defense says a man who was deemed a pedophile by many in his community is finally free.
â??The verdict from jury spoke what I knew from the beginning of this case. There were so many inconsistencies. The story changes so many different times. I knew this was a story, and it was not the truth, and today in this courtroom, justice was done,â?? LaCosse said.