No bond for accused rapist of girl who traveled for abortion

COLUMBUS, Ohio — A person accused of raping and impregnating a 9-year-old Ohio girl who traveled to Indiana for an abortion was ordered held with out bond Thursday by a choose who cited overwhelming proof and the truth that he apparently resides within the U.S. illegally.

Gerson Fuentes, 27, faces two counts of raping the girl, who turned 10 earlier than having the abortion in a case that has turn into a flashpoint within the nationwide dialogue about entry to the process because the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. He has pleaded not responsible.

If convicted, Fuentes, who is from Guatemala, faces the chance of life in jail with no likelihood of parole. That penalty and “not having any ties to this community that can be proved legally makes it a substantial flight risk,” Franklin County Judge Julie Lynch stated after a 35-minute listening to.

The girl confirmed that Fuentes attacked her, Fuentes confessed to Columbus police detectives, and DNA testing of the aborted fetus confirmed Fuentes was the daddy, Franklin County Prosecutor Dan Meyer and detective Jeffrey Huhn stated in courtroom Thursday.

Huhn stated he was unable, when looking a number of databases, to seek out any proof that Fuentes was within the nation legally.

In denying bond, Lynch cited that proof, the violence of the crime and the truth that Fuentes had been dwelling in the identical residence with the girl and her mom.

“To allow him to return to that home, the traumatic and psychological impact would be undeserving to an alleged victim,” Lynch stated. She additionally cited the “physical, and mental and emotional trauma” the girl suffered from enduring the rapes and the abortion, and discovering her case on the heart of the nation’s abortion debate.

The case gained nationwide consideration after an Indianapolis doctor, Dr. Caitlin Bernard, stated the kid needed to journey to Indiana as a consequence of Ohio banning abortions on the first detectable “fetal heartbeat” after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade ruling.

President Joe Biden cited the case when he signed an order July 8 attempting to guard abortion entry. Some conservatives and outstanding Republicans, together with Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost, cast doubt on the story initially, then condemned the assault after Fuentes was arrested.

Fuentes’ lawyer, Bryan Bowen, argued towards a no-bond listening to and unsuccessfully requested Lynch to set an inexpensive bond. He stated there was no proof that there was bodily abuse outdoors of the rapes or that the girl had been put beneath the affect of medicine or alcohol. He additionally stated that Fuentes had household ties in Columbus, that he had a job, and that there was no proof of a legal historical past. Fuentes has lived within the space about seven years.

“We’ve heard evidence about the nature of the offense, but we have not heard any evidence presented about any danger that Mr. Fuentes would pose to any particular person or to the community,” he stated. He declined to remark after Lynch’s ruling.

Dan Meyer, an assistant Franklin County prosecutor, stated Thursday that Fuentes was offering for the girl’s household, together with her mom.

Columbus police realized in regards to the girl’s being pregnant after her mom alerted Franklin County Children Services on June 22. Huhn stated Fuentes confessed to raping the girl, who turned 10 on May 28, on two events.

The girl noticed a Columbus-area physician in late June with a plan to have an abortion domestically, however that wasn’t attainable as a result of gestational age, decided to be six weeks and 4 days, Huhn testified.

Ohio’s “heartbeat” abortion ban consists of an exception solely for an emergency that’s life-threatening or involving a “serious risk of the substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function.”

Indiana’s Republican Senate leaders proposed a invoice this month that may prohibit abortions from the time an egg is implanted in a uterus, with exceptions in instances of rape and incest and to guard the life of the mom. The proposal adopted the controversy over the Ohio girl’s abortion in Indiana.

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