Jerome, 70, was arrested and charged with impregnating a child and illegal sexual activity with a minor. He was ordered held without bond at a Palm Beach County jail and cannot have any contact with the victim or anyone under the age of 18. The press did not name an attorney for him.
According to Boca Raton police report, the 13-year-old victim reportedly went to North Broward Medical Center on the morning of May 24 complaining of stomach pain. After a medical examination, it was discovered that the girl was 14 weeks pregnant.
Doctors informed the Florida Department of Children and Families and the sheriff’s office about the girl. When questioned by investigators, the child said that the father was 70-year-old Jerome. He would “touch her and have sex with her,” according to the report.
The redacted report doesn’t say how the two are related, if at all, but it appears that they were both living in the same home in Boca Raton. The report doesn’t say if anyone else lived at the home.
Police interviewed Jerome with the help of a Creole translator, and he reportedly told them that he cared for the girl and that he had consensual sex with her on three occasions over the past few months. He allegedly admitted that he was the father of the unborn child.
“Jerome stated that within the last couple of months he has had consensual vaginal intercourse with [redacted] three times,” police said, according to The Miami Herald. “Jerome stated that [redacted] was interested in him more than he was interested in her and never forced her to do anything.”
According to Florida statutes, the age of consent in Florida is 18 years old. People aged 16 and 17 can give consent to a partner who is no more than 23 under Florida’s so-called “Romeo and Juliet” law. No one under the age of 16 can legally consent to sex.
It is considered statutory rape to have sex with a child under 15 years of age regardless of whether or not the child verbally consented to sex. Unlawful sexual activity with minors is a second degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison, 15 years of sex offender probation, and a $10,000 fine.
A person convicted of the charge would also be declared a sex offender and would be required to comply with sex offender registration laws throughout the U.S. for the rest of their lives.
Sexual offenses in general carry a lot of social stigma and require the highest caliber of professionalism on the part of the defense lawyer.
South Florida Sex Crime Attorney
If you have been arrested or charged with a sexual offense in South Florida, then you should hire an attorney. Contact us to set up a free initial consultation and work with one of South Florida’s most experienced sex crime attorneys.