Believe it or not, some US state laws actually force rape victim mothers, to share the child with the actual r*pist.
Here is one case involving 18-year-old Noemi from Nebraska. That state has the law where the rapist gets to have access to the child. Essentially he is allowed to share the child with the woman he r*ped.
Here’s what Noemi had to say about the absurdity of such an arrangement, in which she fears the man will harm her or something bad will happen:
“I can’t tell what he will do to my daughter. Now, I have to text my rapist or email my rapist. To leave my daughter with someone I didn’t trust. I’m forced to parent with him and to see him on a weekly basis….”
Unreal. And while it turns out, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, there are an estimated 17,000 to 32,000 rape-related pregnancies in the United States each year, there are likely many more of these cases which occur, where the rapist gets joint custody.
In this case, Noemi’s rapist was indeed charged with first-degree sexual assault. Turns out though, he ended up pleading out. He pleaded to a lesser charge of third-degree sexual assault.
Now if he had ended up getting convicted of the original sexual assault in the first degree, then no parental rights would have been granted to him under the Nebraska law. Since he pleaded to, and was convicted of, third-degree assault, parental rights were granted, and in turn he ended up winning his case for unsupervised visits with his daughter, which take place a few hours every other weekend, as well as two Tuesdays each month.
What can Noemi do about this? Nothing.
There was also a case where a rapist dropped his visitation rights, but in turn demanded that the mother waive any child support payments, thus essentially bribing her.
Indeed there are more mothers all around the country with similar situations as Noemi’s, as less than half of the states have laws which terminate the parental rights of a rapist, without a conviction necessary.
Apparently these laws were written up during a time when a strong social bias existed against unmarried mothers. Parental rights for children born to unmarried women weren’t even granted.
Noemi will continue to fight though, taking her case to the Nebraska legislature. They are actually thinking of changing the law. This would protect the mothers from being forced to share their kids with the men who raped them.