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Woman arrested in violent kidnapping of Wyoming County farm worker

A 30-year-old Mount Morris woman was under arrest following the violent kidnapping of a Wyoming County farm worker Sunday night, Wyoming County Sheriff Greg Rudolph said Friday.

Bail was set at $250,000 cash, and investigators say there may be more coming to the story of the abduction in the future.

Here is how investigators described the situation:

Zoraida Rodriguez, 30, of Mount Morris was among a group of people who lured a farm worker out of his home on Route 39 in the Town of Castile at about 10 p.m. Sunday, sheriff's officials said.

"They pulled in and he came out of the house," Rudolph said.

A group of four to five people – one or two women and two or three men – attacked the farm worker, pistol whipping and beating him, investigators said. They also robbed him of his money and cell phone, officials said.

The assailants then put the farm worker into the backseat and drove for about 30 minutes before they stopped in the Town of Nunda in Livingston County and he managed to escape.

The victim, who had injuries to his face and head, ran into a field and sought help. He was treated and released from a local hospital.

Rodriguez was arraigned Thursday in the Town of Gainsville Court on charges of second-degree kidnapping, first-degree robbery and second-degree assault.

She was remanded to Wyoming County Jail in lieu of bail set at $250,000 in cash or $500,000 bond.

“The arrest of Zoraida Rodriguez is just the beginning in resolving this case," said Sheriff Greg Rudolph. "The investigation is ongoing as more information is being developed into the identities of the other suspects and additional arrests are forthcoming."

Investigators don't believe there are any witnesses to the attack or in Nunda where the farm worker escaped, but are hoping to find people who may have seen Rodriguez before or after the beating and kidnapping.

"We're hoping with her [Rodriguez's] arrest we'll be able to find out who the other suspects are," Rudolph said. "Maybe with a little help from the public we'll be able to connect the dots with this."

The sheriff asked anyone with information about the incident or about Rodriguez to contact the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Office at 585-786-8989 or the sheriff's confidential tip line at 585-786-8965.

Also this week, the sheriff's office announce the Wyoming County Drug Task Force arrested six people on charges of selling narcotics and another for perjury in the past four weeks as part of "Operation Frosty." Among the arrests were:

  • Richard Barber, 47, of Batavia on Dec. 13 on charges of third-degree criminal sale and criminal possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine). He was being held Friday in the Wyoming County Jail in lieu of $25,000 cash bail.
  • Raven Houston, 24, of Rochester on Dec. 6 on 11 counts of first-degree perjury for allegedly lying to a grand jury about a drug-related investigation in the Town of Warsaw. She was released on her own recognizance.
  • Carlos Torres, 42, of Rochester on two counts each of criminal sale and criminal possession of a controlled substance, both in the third degree, for allegedly selling cocaine on two occasions in the Town of Middlebury. Bail was set at $50,000 cash and he was returned to the Monroe County Jail where he is being held on other drug related charges.


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