Thoughts?.By Mary Beth LaneThe Columbus Dispatch Saturday August 16, 2008 7:50 AM
LANCASTER, Ohio --- A Pickerington couple and their son are fighting for custody of a baby born to a Lancaster woman charged with having unlawful sex with the boy, who was 15 at the time of conception.
A paternity test shows that the teen is the father of the baby born April 7 to Jane C. Crane, who was 19 when she became pregnant. Now, a judge has ordered him to pay $50 a month in child support and set visitation at seven hours a week.
Crane, meanwhile, faces criminal charges. A Fairfield County grand jury indicted her last month on two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor, a fourth-degree felony. Conviction carries a maximum sentence of 18 months in prison and a requirement to register as a sex offender for 25 years.
Crane is living with the baby and her family in Lancaster.
The boy's parents say they can provide a better upbringing for the baby than Crane can. Her household includes her stepfather, David L. Jacobs, who was convicted of domestic violence last year for hitting, choking and pointing a gun at Crane's 17-year-old sister and was placed on two years' probation, court records show.
"We don't want to have our granddaughter abused by these people," the boy's father said. "We are trying to do the right thing.
"The child support was the icing on the cake. I couldn't believe that our son has to pay child support to his abuser."
The Dispatch does not identify victims of sexual abuse.
Crane is scheduled for a pretrial conference before Common Pleas Judge Richard E. Berens on Aug. 21. A hearing and a status conference in the custody dispute are scheduled for next month before Domestic Relations Judge Kathy S. Mowry.
Crane, now 21, is not a suitable custodial parent in part because she may have committed a felony by having sexual intercourse with a minor younger than 16, the boy's parents argue in court papers seeking custody.
Crane declined to comment. She is free on a $5,000 recognizance bond pending trial. Her attorney, Sandra Davis, did not return calls. Lawyer Jennifer Strunk, the court-appointed guardian ad litem representing the baby's interests, said through a spokesman that she could not comment.
That a 19-year-old woman had sex with a 15-year-old boy might seem like no big deal to some, but it is a serious charge, said Assistant Prosecutor Julia Dillon.
It makes no difference that it is an adult female charged with unlawful sexual conduct with a minor boy rather than the more common instance of an adult male charged with unlawful sexual conduct with a minor girl.
"It is an age and maturity issue, not a gender issue," Dillon said. "He's a young boy coming into his own, being taken advantage of by an adult."
There could yet be a plea agreement. "I have made what I consider to be a reasonable offer, but I have not received a response," she said.
The incident has had lasting affects on the boy, now 16, his mother said.
"He has nightmares, he is stressed out," she said. "He is a father, even though it was a crime for him to be a father. His life is changed forever."
Crane got to know the family while she worked at a local movie theater with the boy's older sister. When Crane said that her stepfather was abusive, his family allowed her to move in with them.
The boy's sister later bought her own home and Crane moved in with her. It was there last summer that Crane had sex with their son at least twice, his parents said.
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08-04-2012 21:03 #1
Judge orders 15 yo statutory rape victim to pay child support...
08-04-2012 21:16 #2
It's clear he is the victim of sexual assault and should not be forced to pay child support for his child. He and his parents have every right to fight for custody of his daughter and granddaughter.
What would people think if it was reverse genders and the young girl who had been raped and her rapist was not only raising her child and in an abusive environment but she was expected to pay child support. I know that scenario wouldn't happen....
08-04-2012 21:24 #3-
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i think its disgusting that he pay child support when he was deemed to have been raped by this woman!
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08-04-2012 21:31 #4
I may get roasted for this but I think there may be more to this story. The story is saying it was statutory rape - if I hazard to guess I would say the two were in a consensual relationship, she got pregnant and the boys parents found out, were unhappy so they had her charged for sex with a minor.
Realistically he could have been 15 and 11 months and she could have been just 19. That is, in essence, only three years difference. I have known quite a few males and females in consensual relationships with that age difference at that age, except the male was older.
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08-04-2012 21:34 #5
How terrible all round...
If the genders were reversed the 15 year old would be faced with becoming a parent which would cost a lot more than $50 a month... Just a thought.
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08-04-2012 21:44 #6-
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08-04-2012 22:02 #7
But the law states that the 15 year old can not legally consent to sex with the 19 year old, so legally it can't be consensual. Regardless of if I agree with that law, the fifteen yr old is not - by law - considered adult enough to understand what they are consenting to when engaging in sex, so how can they be held accountable for paying child support. Has me baffled.
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08-04-2012 22:12 #8Senior Member
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My husband was 14 when his 16 year old girlfriend fell pregnant and 15 when his daughter was born. He's paid child support since miss 10 was born and is a major part of her life. His encounter was consensual (it was a one off and his first time!) and since he made the decision to act like a grown up he has stepped up to his grown up responsibilities. A 15 year old knows what they are doing. My PERSONAL opinion is even though the law says consensual sex is 16 it doesn't mean males younger than that don't know what they are doing and I think it may have been the parents that had a lot to do with the statutory rape claim. Ask ANY 14 15 or 16 year old about being with an older woman and they will tell you it's cool. I'm pretty sure in this case it's what's happened and the parents just don't wanna see there angel as having grown up and are trying to place blame elsewhere.
08-04-2012 22:23 #9
Again, I am making a lot of assumptions here. But the story doesn't seem black and white to me.
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08-04-2012 22:33 #10
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