|For Immediate Release
Case # 07NF2063
December 17, 2010
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
FULLERTON MAN SENTENCED TO 110 YEARS TO LIFE IN PRISON FOR MURDERING 43-YEAR-OLD NEIGHBOR AFTER FINDING HER IN BED WITH HIS ADULT SON
SANTA ANA – A Fullerton man was sentenced today to 110 years to life in state prison for murdering his 43-year-old neighbor after finding her in bed with his adult son. Guillermo Rodriguez, 43, Fullerton, was found guilty by a jury Oct. 18, 2010, of one felony count each of murder, criminal threats, and dissuading a witness from testifying. Rodriguez has four prior strikes including two robbery and two assault with a deadly weapon convictions in 1996. Guillermo Rodriguez’s son, Junior Rodriguez, was also charged and convicted in this case (see below).
On the night of Oct. 16, 2006, Guillermo Rodriguez had a dinner party at his apartment in Fullerton with his girlfriend, four sons, and neighbor Donna Dutton and her 12-year-old daughter. Guillermo Rodriguez consumed alcohol throughout the night. At approximately 1:00 a.m. on Oct. 17, 2006, Guillermo Rodriguez left the apartment with his girlfriend to purchase more alcohol. When they returned to the apartment, Guillermo Rodriguez walked into the bedroom of his 18-year-old son, Junior Rodriguez, and found Dutton in bed with him. The defendant argued with Dutton and yelled at his girlfriend and son to leave the room and close the door. Guillermo Rodriguez strangled and murdered Dutton, wrapped her in a blanket, and left the body in the bathroom.
The next evening, Guillermo Rodriguez carried the victim out of the apartment and into his girlfriend’s car with the help of Junior Rodriguez. The defendant drove to Victorville and dumped the body in a remote area. He instructed his son and his girlfriend to tell police that the victim had left the dinner party at 2:30 a.m. if questioned. Ten days later, hunters came across the victim’s body and notified police.
In December 2006, Rodriguez told his new wife, Christina Rodriguez, what he had done to Dutton two months earlier. On March 20, 2007, while at the Fullerton Police Department, Christina Rodriguez called the defendant to discuss the crime. He dissuaded her from telling anyone what he had said.
On May 29, 2007, Guillermo and Junior Rodriguez were arrested. On Jan. 8, 2008, Junior Rodriguez pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact and was sentenced to one year in jail and three years of formal probation.
During the sentencing today, the victim’s sister and adult son gave impact statements to the court. Dutton’s sister said that Donna was a wonderful person and her murder was a tremendous loss for their family. She also stated that Rodriguez should be locked away for the rest of his life and be unable to experience the life events of his family, in the same way that he took that right from her sister.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Steve McGreevy of the Homicide Unit prosecuted this case.