Joliet man gets six years for New Years Day rape

November 6

JOLIET – Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow announced that a Joliet man was sentenced to six years in prison for raping a young woman in the early-morning hours of New Years Day 2008.

Ernesto Puga Jr., 42, was convicted of criminal sexual assault at the conclusion of a bench trial in August. Circuit Judge Amy Bertani-Tomczak, who presided over the trial, sentenced Puga on Friday (November 6).

The 18-year-old victim was a friend of Puga’s son. She had stayed overnight at Puga’s residence after a New Years Eve party.

Puga arrived home in an intoxicated state at about 6 a.m. on New Years Day and entered the room where the victim was sleeping alone. While he was in the room, Puga choked the victim and raped her.

The victim, who testified during the trial, filed a police report and went to Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center for treatment. In addition to her testimony, Dr. Marie O’Connor testified at trial to the injuries the victim suffered during the sexual assault.

Assistant State’s Attorneys Anna Rossi and Frank Byers prosecuted the case.

“Ernesto Puga began the New Year in 2008 by forcing himself on a young woman who was a guest in his house,” State’s Attorney Glasgow said. “Because of his reprehensible deviance, this despicable degenerate will close out each of the next several years behind prison bars as a guest of the Illinois Department of Corrections.”