Joliet Newsman Says Foes Will 'Destroy' Gal Pal With Fake Sex Case

The boyfriend of a Democratic precinct committeewoman jailed on sex charges claims he is the real target of corrupt police and politicians.

The septuagenarian lover of a 32-year-old Troy Township Democratic committeewoman jailed for an alleged sex date with a teenage boy took another shot at the cops he says framed her in retaliation for his muckraking.

"They're going to do everything they can to destroy her because they know how important she is to me," Joliet weekly newspaperman John Gabriel said of the felony sex case that landed his much-younger lady friend, Margarita Hernandez, in jail last week.

"This thing with Margarita is nothing more than an adventure in hate," said Gabriel, 76, who formerly worked for the Joliet Times Weekly before striking out on his own and launching the Weekly Reporter.

But Joliet Police Chief Mike Trafton dismissed Gabriel's accusation as "asinine."

"That's preposterous," Trafton said. "I know better. I would never allow my guys to do anything like that, and they would never do anything like that.

"This is about protecting children and nothing more," Trafton said.

Hernandez was arrested Thursday after FBI agents raided the 6901 Monmouth Drive home where she and Gabriel live, Trafton said. The FBI searched the house on Joliet's far west side as part of an ongoing child pornography investigation, he said.

Last week, Gabriel blamed Hernandez's arrest on "crooked policemen and crooked politicians" looking to settle a score with him.

He also told how he suspected a Romeoville cop who once fired a gun at him was behind the setup.

Romeoville Police Chief Mark Turvey said Monday that Gabriel has raised issues about his department in the past, but never anything about an officer shooting at him.

"That's the first I ever heard of that," Turvey said. "If someone were to make an allegation like that, there would be a very thorough investigation."

Gabriel backed off the shooting story Monday, but did claim that one time in either 2009 or 2010 he was lured to the Burger King in Romeoville and then threatened by a uniformed police officer.

He said he was on his way to a secret meeting when he was pulled over on Route 53 near Taylor Road.

Gabriel said the officer, whose name he does not know, walked up to his window and told him, "Gabriel, why don't you get smart and stay the f--- out of Romeoville."

No one showed for his appointment at the Burger King, Gabriel said, and he realized "it was just a trick to get me down there, and I reported it to the FBI."

The FBI, he said, has an extensive collection of reports on him and numerous threatening letters he received and forwarded to an agent in the Orland Park office, Gabriel said, adding, "I doubt they would share it with you."

FBI spokeswoman Joan Hyde said she would be available to discuss Gabriel's claims Tuesday, the same day Gabriel says he hopes to get his girlfriend in front of a judge to ask for a reduction in her $250,000 bond.

Gabriel said he spoke to Hernandez about her next court date when she called him Monday afternoon from the Will County jail.

"She's doing real well," he said, adding, "We're both devout Catholics."

"That's going to be her strength," Gabriel said. "Her prayer."

Gabriel said he first met his much younger girlfriend when he hired her to work at a cell phone and pager business he used to own. They moved in together about 10 years ago, he said, and both became precinct committeemen for the Troy Township Democrats.

He said they can both be committeemen in the same district because Hernandez was elected and he was appointed.

Soon after moving in with Hernandez, Gabriel began to pursue his dream of writing for newspapers. He says this career choice set in motion the events that ended with his girlfriend's arrest for allegedly having sex with a teenage boy.

"There's a lot of people I have angered," Gabriel said, adding, "They're punishing an innocent girl to try to get even with me, and it is a dirty, rotten shame."

Clutche October 08, 2012 at 11:22 PM
In 2010 he claimed she was her granddaughter http://www.cityofjoliet.info/city-government/documents/052010Minutes.doc
Jay Bell October 09, 2012 at 12:17 AM
Gabriel: "We're both devout catholics." That doesn't mean much. Throughout histrory, Catholics have proven to be have the potential to be just as perverse and depraved as anyone else, they are definitely no exception to the rule. No one is above suspicion. NO ONE. www.firebrandcentral.com
Chester Rook October 09, 2012 at 01:22 AM
This guy seems nuts. Maybe going through dementia, Alzheimer's, drugs, I don't know. I don't want to speculate, but he is definitely playing cards with less than a full deck. Going to "secret meetings" at Burger King, getting pulled over by mysterious police officers telling him to get out of town, claiming an officer shot at him for no reason and the department has no documentation of his claim. Claiming the police are after his granddaughter girlfriend because he worked as a reporter or columnist or something. I blame the State's decision to close the Tinley Park Mental Health Center. Now the crazies are walking around among us.
Mark Willis October 09, 2012 at 01:52 AM
He is libelous nut and the woman is while perhaps involved in this crime with a child is also a victim of him. She moved in with him when she was 21? He has passed her off as his granddaughter for years. WHY? I doubt this name he uses is his actual name. According to public records she owns the home at 6901 Monmouth and he has her sitting in jail and won't let her talk. He won't let her bond out or talk. If anybody has read the lunacy he has written over the few years he took money to write articles from crooked desperate politicians and try and pass it off as news they would get a profile of a obsessed mad man. Lockport politician Alderman Kelly Turner put him up in an office / paid his rent after he was fired from the Times Weekly and they went broke while he made up the most ridiculous and outrageous stories or merely reprinted what they told him to write. On a WJOL interview after he accused County Executive Candidate Dan Kennison of water-boarding his wife based on rumor he was asked who owned his fake newspaper and declined to answer. He generally attacked republicans but would branch out if paid to do so. A look into his past will surely produce a colorful history of...well you will all know soon enough. This woman will be his victim beyond this story. Here is the septuagenarian's picture...(a picture from when he interviewed himself in 2008) http://i1144.photobucket.com/albums/o488/downtownjerryandmark/JohnthepervertGabriel_edited-1.jpg
Mark Willis October 09, 2012 at 02:28 AM
These are the issues he wrote after he lost his funding and office. What exactly did he do in that office with the blind shut and curtains pulled so tightly...??? His old articles made "the onion" look serious. He takes credit every time his enemy stubs a toe and now he writes on his site that his enemies did not win!!! He is narcissist and a weirdo to say the least. He has lied to everybody around him. How about the girl sitting in jail or how about the children / victims, who if true about the sexual misconduct will have a lifetime messed up by this misogynist nut? no comment on that, just look at me me me...I'm John Gabriel, the crime fighter!!! JOHN, This isn't about you. It's about the woman in jail and the children victim(s). You are a monster John, and you will get your just deserve very soon.
Mark Willis October 09, 2012 at 02:36 AM
see here... By the way he is all the writers....Starting with: John Gabriel, Mark Goodson, Miles Goodson, Ralph LaPorte, Lindsey of "Ask Lindsey", Kenny Holmes and Muttonhead the Cartoon. No Joke, he writes all the stories and portrays it as if he has a staff of writers... http://issuu.com/theweeklyreporter/docs
Mark Willis October 09, 2012 at 02:37 AM
http://theweeklyreporter.com/ you can see here how much he cares about the children involved.
Tony October 09, 2012 at 11:16 AM
His girlfriend of 10 years is sitting in jail and he is using her misfortune to promote himself, what a man.
Disappointed October 10, 2012 at 01:48 AM
Hey Mark, why do you believe she will be a victim as well?
Penny lock October 10, 2012 at 02:22 AM
He is a psycho! Don't believe him!! And I am happy for justice for all the kids they hurt cause it wasn't only one --- they tried to get my relatives involved in their sick cult!
Penny lock October 10, 2012 at 02:26 AM
John get a life!!! Since u are a no one now ur taking an advantage of innocent children!!! Not margarita cause she knew what she was doing with all the young ones she did ...
Justice October 10, 2012 at 04:32 AM
This is only the beginning, wait till everything comes out, John is trying to blame everyone else and making it a political thing when its not even close to that, it has nothing to do with what he states....he will also soon be in jail and justice will be served for betraying the trust of the people that looked up to him and Margarita! I hope that all the children that they victimized get some kind of closure!
Mark Willis October 10, 2012 at 04:42 AM
While she may be guilty of a crime and if so she will have to answer for it as an adult, this man is her master. He is a manipulator and classic misogynist. He captured this woman as a vulnerable child and while he is now trying to act proud of the relationship, before for obvious reasons he passed her off as his granddaughter. Now he's her proud lover? She has 6 figure equity in her home and is sitting in jail as we speak, he won't allow the money to bond her out so he can steal the spotlight and make the problem about him. He is a failed political fanatic that sought relevancy and could not find it and is using this sad situation to make the story about him at her expense. While she is an adult he has carefully manipulated her and when this all shakes out you will see that he was orchestrating all of this. She don't sneeze without his permission. Essentially he is pimping her out. When she goes home she will wish she stayed in jail.
Ray October 10, 2012 at 02:20 PM
No wonder Chicago has a reputation for crooked politics, you guys white wash it. Some obvious clues that you are discounting: cops are dirty and this story stinks.
John Roberts October 11, 2012 at 12:41 PM
Funny how people discredit his story knowing how the police are in Joliet,Romeoville,New Lenox,Rockdale..all crooked...If you all think police officers do not threaten people your nuts and do not get out much....Instantly discredit the fact police are corrupt...that's funny stuff...weather or not she did it that's something to decide..but weather or not cops and politicians are crooked...well that's already been decided since the first police station was ever opened....
Hugo October 11, 2012 at 07:23 PM
You don't say...
Justice October 11, 2012 at 09:45 PM
Marigarita also works at Southwest Airlines so how is that going to prevent her from not being around under 18 year olds? How can they let her go back to work when children are in airports and travel!!!!! Margarita how come John has not bailed you out, you know very well he has all that money from his child pornography business!!! He is saving it all because he knows he is going to need it to bail himself out and his lawyer expenses, he don't give a damn about you, you are going to take all the rap for him, open your eyes and save yourself!!!!!!
Rosemary Golden October 12, 2012 at 02:37 AM
Penny lock...I am wondering about Margarita...do you think that maybe she has been John's victim for years? Do you think maybe she has been forced into doing these horrendous things that she is accused of..or do you believe she was just going along with him and as sick as him? I have so many more questions than answers, but I think this is the basis of it all. Anyone else wondering these things?
Justice October 12, 2012 at 02:28 PM
Very Nice said Mark Willis! Straight to the point and actual facts! This is exactly what has happened, Margarita will have to answer to what she has done but she is also in a way a victim of John, she has been used by him... he is the pimp and she is the prostitute and she didn't even know it! He has tried to recruit more girls to follow Margaritas steps but failed because he chose the wrong family that stood up and will not let this be swept under the rug! you chose the wrong kids John!!!!
Justice October 12, 2012 at 02:37 PM
Wow Mark, it seems like you know him very well! I would like to shake your hand! Everything said is true, I hope Margarita can see it too, she needs to open her eyes and save herself from this monster!
Justice October 12, 2012 at 02:49 PM
Rosemary, I can answer that question! Margarita is a victim of Johns Manipulation, he is a professional in manipulation, he has done it for many years even to family and close friends... but Margarita is an adult, she should have stood up and stopped it specially when involving family to their sick acts.. she will have to pay for what she has done and if she doesn't help herself by opening her mouth and give up John, she will go down by herself while john enjoys life in her home and her money, whatever is left after all the lawsuits coming.... I do not believe she is as sick as him or atleast I hope, she has been brainwashed for over 10 years by this man making her believe higher power wanted her to do this when it was him with his sick head... I can't wait for all the truth to come out!
Justice October 12, 2012 at 02:55 PM
and to add to that, Margarita is very smart and knows from right and wrong so if she chose to do acts that were immoral and sick then she has to suffer the consequences!
Justice October 12, 2012 at 02:59 PM
Just Curious, her and john fooled everyone! They did live a double life!
Rosemary Golden October 13, 2012 at 12:31 AM
Just curious..yes I know what you mean. Can a person be so controlled that they may not know right from wrong? Maybe i just dont want to believe that she would do something like that. I would rather blame him for sure, but i cant help but wonder how young she really was when he got her in his clutches. And yes, I too know she lived a double life. Everyone I know that knew her did not ever even know about John. Everyone thought she lived alone. What a shock! But can this be anything similar to Patricia Hearst, who claimed to be brainwashed..or maybe even Jaycee Dugaard who was forced into submission? I just am having a hard time believing that Margarita was really that evil or that a young girl like her would be interested in a old man like John. And how she never told people about him if he was her boyfriend for 10 years? Maybe she did know right from wrong but I wonder if she felt she had control enough to say no to him. I also hope that Margarita will speak up and tell the truth about John and what he has really done. I don't believe she has much of a relationship with her family (probably because of John) but I hope they can find it in their hearts to come forward and see if she can be helped.
jason November 20, 2012 at 09:05 PM
did you notice this should be grounds for perjury


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »