The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

April 10, 2014

Defendant bound over for trial in sex abuse case

— A Jasper County judge found probable cause at a hearing Thursday for a rural Carthage man to stand trial on charges that he sexually abused a young woman.

Associate Circuit Judge Richard Copeland ordered Hector J. Gonzalez, 50, to stand trial on three counts of deviate sexual assault at the conclusion of a preliminary hearing in Jasper County Circuit Court in Joplin.

The alleged victim testified that Gonzalez forced her to gratify him sexually on three occasions in February of last year when she was 18 years old. The defendant plied her with alcoholic drinks the first two times and threatened to cause problems for her family if she refused the last time, she told the court.

The woman said the first time, Gonzalez gave her a dark-colored drink.

“It smelled like rubbing alcohol,” she said. “It burned.”

It also made her lightheaded, she said. She had not been allowed near alcohol growing up, she said.

She said Gonzalez asked her to massage his shoulders, and she complied. He changed the channel that she was watching to a pornographic channel, and then abused her, she said.

She testified that Gonzalez forced the same act on her two other days that month.

Defense attorney Ross Rhoades asked why she did not refuse to rub Gonzalez’s shoulders.

“I tried,” she said.

The attorney asked why she did not leave the room when Gonzalez changed channels.

“I tried,” she said. “I tried. I couldn’t. Because I felt lightheaded and I didn’t know what to do.”

She acknowledged on cross-examination that there were others in the house, but that she did not call out to them or later tell them what had happened. She said she called an uncle and told him after the second occasion, but the defendant made her call him back and tell him that she had lied.

Next hearing

A JUDGE HAS SET April 21 as the initial appearance date for Hector Gonzalez in a trial division of Jasper County Circuit Court.

Text Only
Local News
  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • Cherokee County Commission accepts general counsel's resignation

    Kevin Cure, who has served as general counsel for the Cherokee County Commission since 2005, submitted a handwritten resignation to the board on Monday in the aftermath of a landfill controversy.

    July 22, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Parents can get help with school supplies

    I don’t know much about demographics other than the fact that I no longer belong to a “targeted demographic.” When I was younger, I was bombarded by commercials and ads from companies that were trying to sell me things that I not only needed but wanted.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jasper County Commission reviews traffic plans

    The Jasper County Commission will hold public hearings today and Thursday on a number of traffic changes proposed in the county. No one spoke when the first hearing was held Tuesday as part of the regular commission meeting, according to Jim Honey, Eastern District associate commissioner.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Neosho school board hires company to manage substitutes

    Citing its hopes of shifting health care costs and utilizing more time from retired teachers, the Neosho Board of Education granted a contract Monday to a temporary employee company to manage its substitute teacher program.

    July 22, 2014

  • Main Street TIF district study to begin

    A measure that allows the city to charge its $15,000 in administrative costs for studying a proposal to create a tax increment financing district on South Main Street was approved Monday by the Joplin City Council.

    July 21, 2014

  • Carthage man pleads guilty in sexual abuse case

    A Carthage man pleaded guilty Monday to sexual abuse of a 12-year-old girl in a plea agreement that would cap the length of his prison term at no more than 15 years.

    July 21, 2014

Must Read


A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter