Harvey couple faces attempted murder charges in neighbor's shooting

A married couple was charged in the shooting of a neighbor last month in south suburban Harvey.

Jorge Agueros-Montalvo, 33, and Michelle L. Villarreal, 39, were each charged with attempted murder and aggravated battery with a firearm in the June 21 attack, according to Cook County court records and prosecutors.

About 6:30 p.m. that evening, the neighbor was bringing tires into his home in the 16000 block of South Page Avenue when the armed couple approached him, Assistant State's Attorney Aerial Henderson said during their initial court hearing Sunday at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse. Agueros-Montalvo allegedly shot the man twice and his wife allegedly fired into the sky, Henderson said.

The injured man drove himself to his workplace and later received medical treatment, according to Henderson, who said he can no longer move his arms and has to learn to walk again.

A Harvey police source said the shooting happened after Agueros-Montalvo and Villarreal accused the man of breaking into their home. The man ultimately directed officers to the couple's home and they were taken into custody Friday, the source said.

Adam Grosch, the couple's private attorney, told Judge Susana Ortiz that his clients "fervently deny" any involvement in the shooting. He claimed the listed address for the victim is actually a vacant home and noted that the man's initial police report failed to mention a female suspect or offer a description of the male suspect who shot him.

Grosch said his clients have four children, own their own home and have run a landscaping business for the past 12 years. Villarreal has never been arrested and Agueros-Montalvo's only conviction was for a traffic offense, he added.

Henderson urged Ortiz to deny bail for the couple as three of their family members looked on from the gallery. Ortiz instead set their bail at $50,000 each — the amount Grosch said they could post — and signed orders preventing them from coming into contact with their neighbor and requiring them to remain on house arrest if they're able to bond out.

They are expected to appear in court again Tuesday in Markham.