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home : news : north central illinois   May 24, 2016

4/21/2014 10:55:00 AM
Martinez granted executive clemency
Bureau County case dates back to 2002 traffic stop

Katlyn Rumbold
Princeton Bureau Chief

PRINCETON — On Friday afternoon, the Department of Corrections issued a list of prisoners granted executive clemency. On that list was Juan R. Martinez, 31, originally of DePue.

As a result of a traffic stop on U.S. 6 just outside of Spring Valley on Aug. 14, 2002, Martinez was later convicted on Sept. 5, 2002 for manufacture/delivery of cannabis 30-500 grams, a Class 3 felony carrying 2-5 years in prison. According to Bureau County State’s Attorney Pat Herrmann, the responding officer pulled Martinez over as a result of driving with no headlights and then proceeded to search the vehicle.

Martinez was sentenced to serve three months in county jail, 2.5 years probation, pay all court costs, and complete 50 hours of public service work. Herrmann said his probation was terminated satisfactory on March 14, 2005, but it wasn’t until 2008 that they received a petition to drop the felony charges.

At the time of arrest, Martinez said he had just graduated from high school and felt there was no other way to make ends meet as his family was going through difficult financial times, according to his petition. He also petitioned he didn’t know of any other way to get help and that he believes he was born to transform the world, however he has been haunted and disappointed by his felony ever since.

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