Substitute Teacher Facing Attempted Murder Charges Still on Illinois School’s Payroll

substitute teacher Andres Rodriguez arrested for attempted murder
Tinley Park Police Department

An Illinois man charged with attempted murder for allegedly firing seven shots at a man in a traffic accident is still on an Illinois school’s payroll while on administrative leave.

Andres Rodriguez, 39, of Tinley Park, had reportedly been collecting paychecks from two school districts while on administrative leave as recently as last week, even though he is out of jail on a $500,000 bond awaiting trial for attempted murder charges from July 2017, WGN reported.

Prosecutors say Rodriguez was walking down the street when he got into a dispute with a driver, took out his gun, and fired seven shots at the victim.

The bullets hit the victim in the back, arm, side, and behind his ear, and the suspect allegedly fired some of the shots over the victim while he was down, according to prosecutors.

Both men had concealed carry permits. The victim was reportedly armed at the time but did not fire his weapon.

An attorney for Rodriguez says his client shot the man out of self-defense.

At the time of the incident, Rodriguez had been working as a teacher in Joliet. When the school district found out about the charges, they placed him on paid administrative leave, CBS Chicago reported.

In August 2017, two weeks after being placed on paid administrative leave in Joliet, the Cicero School District hired him as a substitute teacher and after school detention monitor at Unity Junior High with the opportunity to get hired full time in the fall.

In February — six months after the Cicero School District hired Rodriguez — officials found out about the attempted murder allegations and placed Rodriguez on paid administrative leave.

The Cicero School District released a statement Wednesday confirming that Rodriguez is on leave and had not worked or stepped foot on school grounds since February but would not disclose any other information citing personnel matters.

“District 99 performed all necessary due diligence and administered proper employment action within the legal limits of the law, which included immediately placing the employee on leave from the District,” Cicero School District 99 Superintendent Rodolfo Hernandez said in a statement. “This employee has been on leave and has not been on District grounds since February 16, 2018. Since such time, this employee has had no contact with any students, staff, or parents of District 99.”

WGN reported that Joliet School District 86 did not hear about his new job until last week. The Chicago Tribune reported that Joliet school district officials found out on May 2, 2018, about his employment in Cicero.

A resolution from the Joliet school district’s Wednesday meeting obtained by the Tribune showed that the district’s lawyers are trying to get Rodriguez to pay back the money he received over the 2017-2018 school year.

Rodriguez still has an active teaching license under Illinois State Board of Education guidelines because the board cannot revoke his license unless he is convicted of the crime.

Rodriguez is due in court July 12.

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