Madera Pastor and Foster Parent Arrested for Child Molestation has Criminal Record
By Anna Laurel
Madera Police arrested Alberto Rodriguez for child molestation.
Newly filed court documents show a criminal background. A felony conviction from 1985. In 1995 the CEO of Valley Teen Ranch Foster Family Agency in Fresno says Rodriguez came here. He's been a foster parent with this agency ever since.
When we contacted Valley Teen Ranch. The CEO sent this statement:
"We take very seriously our mission, which is to provide children with safe and healthy homes, and have done so successfully for 23 years."
But Madera County Investigators say all the victims in the Rodriguez case were under Rodriguez's watch in the foster care system.
Valley Teen Ranch and The California Department of Social Services say, to become a foster parent, background checks are done.
Michael Weston with the California Department of Social Services says, "There is a very strict process for going to apply to be a foster parent we do finger print checks. We do child abuse checks through the state and FBI database. Home studies are done and it's a very through process and that's intended to insure the health and safety of the children in the foster system."
But court documents show a definite criminal conviction in Rodriguez's records.
"Certain offenses that you can apply for an exemption and the case will be looked at again and a determination will be made whether or not an exemption will be granted."
The Valley Teen Ranch CEO told KMPH news- The Department of Justice let Rodriguez through. But what about the church where Rodriguez "ministered to children"?
Pastor Roger Leach says, "Before we hire any type of staff person they have to go through fingerprinting. And we always check references. So he did go through fingerprinting and he passed."
Maybe everyone hoped for the good in Alberto Rodriguez.
Pastor Lance Leach says, "As far as Christians go, and you look at the deeds that people do, what he's been accused of is not what we would desire a Christian be known as."