Rapist wants visitation rights, teen mom fights back
Precedent-setting legal fight in Massachusetts
- Duration 4:51
- Date Sep 25, 2012
Precedent-setting legal fight in Massachusetts
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-- -- Keep -- knocking -- my time.
She was an eighth grader just fourteen years old when she was raped by a twenty year old former church.
He was the boyfriend or her friend's older sister.
Keep that I mean he told me that like he can Arafat's head guy and pilot had only about me and he'd hand on me and status -- When she became pregnant her mom found out about what had happened it was.
It was -- -- cloud over over my eyes.
For a long time they went to the police to press charges while the teenager decided to keep her baby.
Inane question and I -- that made them laugh out of innings this -- me an instant cash amounting to anything around.
Play clash and I keep -- head -- night.
The man was charged with four counts of statutory rape of a child in 2009.
Last year he pleaded guilty to all the charges in Norfolk superior court.
The district attorney's office wanted them locked up in prison for three to five years but judge Thomas McGuire sentenced him to sixteen years' probation.
With the conditions he acknowledges the father of the baby and abide by the probate and family court.
The probate court ordered him to pay child support and Danny requested visitation rights with the child do you think you should have visitation rights and now.
Can't -- can't -- come around my.
Checking around she strange doesn't have -- how can somebody that comes into my home and raise my fourteen year old daughter -- Slater get to.
Come into my home and take my three year old -- -- Attorney Wendy Murphy represents the victim why was this case sent to family court this isn't date.
Family situation is -- criminal situation Murphy believes judge McGuire made a mistake during sentencing.
Sentencing this man to probation for sixteen years which is really until the child becomes an adult.
And making him declare -- pay child support include that this guy gets a legal father child relationship out of the deal.
Murphy has filed a motion with the court.
Asking the judge to amend the sentencing conditions and -- the man that pay restitution instead of child support which would force him to support the child he -- But not give -- parental rights including visitation rights.
Murphy's motion also asked that the man be ordered to stay away from the mother and the child.
Office that we want -- to cut the cord get the richest out of their lives.
And if the judge wants to help them financially.
That's great but let's call it restitution not child support.
Other states have already tackled this issue.
According to this 2010 study in the Georgetown law journal sixteen states have enacted statutes to protect a raped woman who chooses to raise her child.
Nine of those states allow our require that termination of the rapists parental rights.
While the other seven allow -- require stripping custody or visitation privileges.
Massachusetts is one of 34 states that has not addressed this.
Murphy hopes that will soon change which is why she's also filed an emergency petition with the State's highest court.
Asking a single justice of the supreme judicial court to make a -- since she's still waiting on a decision from the Superior Court Judge what.
Kind of legal system commands a toddler.
Into a relationship.
With the -- with the man who raped her mother.
The attorney for the man who admitted breaking the teenager would not comment on its clients fight for visitation rights but he did -- in the relationship was consensual.
Even though he acknowledged it was inappropriate.
Given the victim was only fourteen.
And its client was -- This was a young girl -- wade -- -- the age of consent and if this is a judge saying to himself.
I wouldn't have done this if it'd been a stranger in a dark Alley.
Then you know that's a judge who maybe shouldn't be sitting on criminal cases because we've we've got over that distinction I think thirty years ago what -- these touches thanking.
She got raped at fourteen she decided to keep her baby now she has to -- and I -- the -- car.
For a visit with her -- that's.
Because attorney Murphy is asking both the superior court and the supreme judicial court to look at this case.
The probate and family court agreed to put off a hearing that was scheduled for this month.
Which would determine if the rate this gets visitation rights that hearing is now scheduled for December.
The victim in the case is hoping a lawmaker will file a bill to close this loophole and already Norfolk County district attorney Michael Morrissey is on board.
Telling us in a statement.
There should be protections in probate lot to prevent rape victims from being forced to hand over their children to their convicted rapists.
This story started with the -- you have an idea that could be the next fox undercover investigation.
You can call 1800 TV.