Repairman swallows ring, police recover evidence

August 9, 2011 (CICERO, Ill.)

Wilfredo Gonzalez-Cruz allegedly grabbed the ring while he was remodeling a home in Cicero. Police say he then swallowed it when he was confronted by the homeowner.

A couple hired a handyman to do some work at their Cicero home last week. Police say, shortly after the 30-year-old used the restroom, the wife noticed her ring was missing and she confronted him.

"They started arguing back and forth, and he admitted he had the ring and it was in his shoe. When they tried to get the ring back, he pulled it out of his shoe and swallowed it," said Cicero spokesperson Ray Hanania.

Police arrived at the home and a spokesperson says he admitted he swallowed the ring, so they took him to a hospital for x-rays, which clearly showed the wedding band in Gonzalez-Cruz's system. Doctors determined the best way to remove it was naturally with the help of a laxative.

"He was put in a lockup in a rubber room with a lot of bed pans and stayed there for two days, and he returned the ring sometime early on Monday morning," said Hanania.

Gonzalez-Cruz remains in jail facing felony theft charges and could face up to three years in prison if convicted.

A family member tells ABC7 the couple is out of town for a few days. Police are just glad it's over.

"I don't think it was pleasant for the suspect, for the woman who owns the ring, and it wasn't pleasant for the officer who had to go in and recover the ring," said Hanania.

Police have the ring and need it for evidence in the case. They plan to return it to the owner eventually after it is thoroughly cleaned.

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