Driver in crash with teacher could be deported

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staff, Gazette
Thursday, July 12, 2012

— A Lake Geneva man pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges of reckless driving in connection with a traffic crash that seriously injured a Lake Geneva teacher. The plea could get him deported.

Jose A. Rodriguez Soto, who speaks Spanish but little English, appeared in Walworth County Court with his attorney and a translator at a plea hearing Wednesday before Judge John Race.

Rodriguez, 30, pleaded guilty to causing great bodily harm by reckless driving and causing injury by driving under the influence of a controlled substance. Race said sentencing could involve deportation.

Rodriguez was driving at high speed Jan. 7 when his vehicle struck the vehicle of Carol A. Nocek, a fifth-grade teacher at Central-Dennison Elementary School in Lake Geneva, according to the criminal complaint.

Nocek had to be extricated from her vehicle. She suffered a fractured pelvis and hips and bruised intestines. She spent more than two months in a hospital and had multiple surgeries.

Rodriguez, who did not have a valid license, was found in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, according to the criminal complaint.

Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 4.

Last updated: 4:58 pm Tuesday, August 27, 2013

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