June 6, 2012 - Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray announced that Trevor Rodrigues, 32, of East Orange was found guilty by an Essex County Jury of brutally beating his 31-year-old wife with a cable wire.
The trial began on May 29, 2012 before the Honorable Joseph Cassini, III, J.S.C. On June 6, 2012, Rodrigues was found guilty of all 10 counts charged in the indictment, including two counts of second degree aggravated assault, terroristic threats and multiple weapons charges. The jury deliberated for about 30 minutes on Tuesday (June 5) and for an hour before returning a verdict.
“The victim in this case demonstrated tremendous courage by testifying about the horrific physical abuse she endured at the hands of her husband,” said Assistant Prosecutor Gail Gallagher, director of the Domestic Violence Unit in the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, who tried the case. “The jury verdict is not simply a victory for her, but it should give other victims the courage and fortitude to come forward and report domestic violence.”
According to Assistant Prosecutor Gallagher, Rodrigues brutally and repeatedly beat his wife with a cable wire and a Venetian blind wand, leaving her bloodied with injuries and other lacerations. On at least one occasion her injuries were so severe she passed out. On another occasion he strangled her until she was unconscious. The slightest annoyance, including a crying child, sent him into a violent rage targeting his wife, Gallagher argued at trial.
The abuse which was the focus of the trial covered a 25-day span from December 2010 to January 2011. The couple had been together since the victim was 16 years old. They were married in 2007.
Following the verdict, the judge immediately revoked Rodrigues’ bail. Rodrigues is scheduled to be sentenced before Judge Cassini on July 20, 2012. When Rodrigues is sentenced, Assistant Prosecutor Gallagher will seek consecutive sentences for the two second degree aggravated assault convictions, which carry a maximum sentence of ten years each. Rodrigues has one prior conviction for eluding and was on probation at the time he was charged with assaulting his wife.
Acting Prosecutor Murray commended Assistant Prosecutor Jason Alterbaum, who assisted at the trial, and Detective Elizabeth Martinez who handled the investigation.