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Illinois mom gets probation in child-binding case

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January 16, 2013 07:30 PM EST | AP

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LAWRENCE, Kan. — A suburban Chicago woman was sentenced Wednesday to one year of probation after two of her children were found bound and blindfolded in a Walmart parking lot in Kansas.

Deborah Gomez, 43, and her husband, Adolfo Gomez, 52, of Northlake, Ill., have been in custody since they were arrested June 13. Police found two of their children, ages 5 and 7, bound by their hands and feet in a Walmart parking lot in Lawrence. Three other children, ages 12, 13 and 15, were inside the family's vehicle unrestrained.

Deborah Gomez pleaded no contest last month to three counts of child endangerment.

Adolfo Gomez, who also pleaded no contest to two counts of felony child abuse and three misdemeanor counts of child endangerment, is scheduled to be sentenced in Feb. 8.

Angela Keck, Deborah Gomez's court-appointed attorney, said her client was an unwilling participant in binding and blindfolding the children, which Adolfo Gomez did to ward off demons. Keck said Deborah Gomez has since been freed from her husband's influence.

"I love my children very much," Deborah Gomez said.

She also said that if she gets permission from probation officials she plans to move to Arizona, which is where the family was headed to visit relatives when the parents were arrested in Lawrence.