A woman who became pregnant to a 14-year-old boy – her daughter’s best friend – has been jailed, and won’t be able to care for the toddler in prison.
The woman was 33 when she fell pregnant in 2015 but denied to police she had sex with the boy, until DNA testing this year proved the teenager was the baby’s father.
On Wednesday, the now-36-year-old woman was jailed for four years, to serve two years before she is eligible for parole, after pleading guilty to persistent sexual abuse of a child.
A County Court judge said the woman gave the boy alcohol and cannabis on one of his early visits to her Melbourne home in 2014.
She later had sex with him at least three times, and also sent him sexually explicit photographs of herself.
Her actions had left the boy – who became a father at 15 – deeply traumatised and destroyed his childhood, the court heard, and also had a profound impact on the boy’s family, as well as the woman’s partner and her children.
“You sexually exploited a child … who was then 14 years old,” the judge told the woman, who cannot be named so not to identify the boy or her children.
“Your offending was motivated by your selfish need for sexual gratification.”
The judge told the woman her gender would not lessen the sentence. Her offending was extremely serious yet largely unexplained, he said, and she had shown little remorse.
“Whilst I accept it is uncommon for women to offend in this way, this sentence is not to be moderated by your gender alone,” he said.
The boy reported having sex with the woman to his school soon afterwards and police were called, but the woman denied her offending.
However, DNA testing on the baby boy, who is now two, proved the teenager was the father.
A psychologist found the woman was emotionally immature and had limited insight into what she had done. She also had substance abuse problems and depression.
The judge acknowledged her time in jail would be harder given she would be away from her children, and that she would likely be kept in protective custody for her own safety.
It is not clear who will care for the two-year-old boy. The judge said the woman wouldn’t be allowed to care for the toddler in prison.
The teenager’s parents have previously cared for the toddler.
The Department of Health and Human Services will also be involved in supervising care.
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