Musician Cecilio Rodriguez, once part of the duo known as Cecilio & Kapono, began serving his one-year prison sentence today, after pleading no contest to sexually molesting two young sisters in Los Angeles.
Compton Superior Court Judge Gary Hahn sentenced Rodriguez, 67, on Jan. 27 to one year in jail and five years probation. Hahn also ordered Rodriguez to complete 52 weeks of sexual offender counseling. If he violates his probation, he faces completing a six-year prison term.
The Los Angeles District Attorney’s office said Rodriguez surrendered to the Compton Court at 8:48 this morning. Rodriguez had been free after posting $200,000 bail on Oct. 1.
Deputy sheriffs took Rodriguez to the Los Angeles County Jail to begin his 365-day jail time.
In January, the singer pleaded no contest to sexually molesting the first girl between 1996 and 1998, and sexually molesting her sister between 1997 and 1999.
Both girls tearfully told Hahn in January telling how Rodriguez had violated their parents’ trust.
One victim, now 21, was between 7 and 8 years old at the time of the assault and her sister, now 23, was between 8 and 9 years old when she was sexually molested. Under California law, charges may be filed for felony sex crimes committed against victims younger than 18 who come forward before their 28th birthday.
This is not the first time Rodriguez has been imprisoned for a sex crime.
Rodriguez was convicted of attempted sexual assault 18 years ago in Hawaii County. He pleaded no contest to attempted sexual assault in the second degree in 1994 and was sentenced to one year in jail, 500 hours of community service and mandatory participation in a sex-offender treatment program.
As part of his 1994 deferred acceptance plea, which would erase the conviction from his record if he stayed out of trouble for 10 years, he was ordered to avoid employment where he would be with children under 14 without the supervision of an approved adult. He also was prohibited from making contact with any minor child without the permission of his probation officer, according to Hawaii court records.
Rodriguez was staying with girls’ family in their Carson home in between concert tour dates.
The crimes were discovered last year when one of the women revealed the assault to her father after she refused to visit Rodriguez in Hawaii,
Rodriguez was arrested Sept. 27 in Los Angeles.
Rodriguez joined Hawaiian musician Henry Kapono and the popular music duo, also known as “C and K,” remained together into the early ’80s. They had several hits including “About You,” “Highway in the Sun,” and “Good night and good morning.”