A man has been arrested for the most heinous of crimes: Impregnating his 12-year-old stepdaughter. Leonel Bartolo Rodriguez, 39, of Stamford, Connecticut was arrested after the girl complained of stomach pains. Her mother brought her to the hospital, only to learn the unthinkable: that her preteen daughter was pregnant.
At first, the little girl was reportedly reluctant to tell authorities what had happened. But then while visiting relatives the next day, the girl confessed to her aunt that it was her stepfather who had been violating her. The aunt called police. Rodriguez is being charged with sexual assault in the first degree.
Thank goodness the little girl decided to come forward and say what happened to her -- although the man is still guaranteed due process by the law. He has not yet made a plea.
If he's found guilty, this is the most horrible thing you can do to a little girl, who trusted you. And this girl will now have to make a decision whether to carry a baby she is clearly NOT prepared for, or have an abortion. I can only imagine what she, and her mom, are going through.
There are states that have cracked down on abortion so stringently that it is virtually impossible to get one. There are even representatives who think "legitimate rape" doesn't lead to pregnancy!
But we should remember that cases like this happen all of the time. This little girl doesn't deserve having to make such a life-altering decision at her age. Nor should she have to give birth if she doesn't want to.
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It's tragic that she didn't feel she could come forward earlier with what might have been happening.
Image via Stamford Police