A member of the Guadalupe Union School District (GUSD) Board of Trustees is facing a charge of misdemeanor battery.
The Guadalupe Police Department confirmed that Raul Ortega Rodriguez Jr. was arrested on Sept. 26, 2022, on suspicion of battery with serious bodily injury.
The Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office said they received that police report and charges were filed against him.
In the complaint, it said Rodriguez Jr. “did willfully and unlawfully use force or violence upon” another man.
KSBY reached out directly to Rodriguez Jr., but his attorney Michael B. Clayton got back to us with the following response.
“Mr. Raul Rodriguez [Jr] is not guilty, he didn’t do anything wrong, he was simply defending himself, self-defense,” Clayton said. “He was over visiting his parents that he loves very much. While he was over visiting his parents, this individual accosted him at his parents' place, struck at him, and my client hit him a couple of times to stop the aggression, therefore, stepped back away from it.”
Rodriguez Jr. is currently serving a four-year term as Vice-President Trustee for the GUSD.
"The District is aware of an incident that allegedly involved a GUSD School Board Member and a citizen in the community,” school officials said in a statement released by GUSD Public Information Officer Kenny Klein. “We are monitoring the situation and have no further comment at this time."
Rodriguez Jr. is up for re-election this November. His attorney said he plans to continue running for another term.
“This is an innocent person moving on forward with his life,” Clayton concluded.
Rodriguez Jr. is set to appear in court for his arraignment on Oct. 12, 2022.