A 27-year-old man has been arrested for allegedly raping and impregnating a 10-year-old Ohio girl, in a story that garnered national attention after President Joe Biden referenced it in a recent speech.
Columbus, Ohio, resident Gershon Fuentes, was apprehended Tuesday after police say he confessed to raping the 10-year-old child on multiple occasions.
Per Ohio statutory law, Fuentes has been charged with first-degree felony rape, according to the Columbus Dispatch.
Local police were reportedly made aware of the child pregnancy through a referral by Franklin County Children Services, made by the young girl's mother on June 22; and Wednesday morning, a Columbus police detective, Jeffrey Huhn, testified at Fuentes' arraignment.
The child's case first made headlines when Dr. Caitlin Bernard — an Indiana-based physician who provides abortion services — referenced, through the media, the harrowing story of a pre-teen girl crossing state lines from Ohio to Indiana, solely to get an abortion.
And once President Biden acknowledged the story, a public backlash developed on two fronts — against the person who allegedly committed the crime, and whether Indiana authorities had properly reported the statutory rape.
"Imagine being that little girl," President Biden said on Friday, while decrying the Supreme Court's recent overturning of Roe v. Wade (by a 5-4 decision). "I'm serious. Just imagine being that little girl."
According to the Dispatch, the girl underwent a medical abortion in Indianapolis on June 30.
The Dispatch reports Detective Huhn also testified that DNA from the clinic in Indianapolis would be tested against samples from Fuentes, as well as the child's siblings, to confirm contribution to the aborted fetus.
Franklin County Municipal Court Judge Cynthia Ebner said the case did not warrant Fuentes — who is reportedly an undocumented alien — be held without bond.
At the same time, Judge Ebner reiterated that a high-dollar bond was necessary ($2 million), since Fuentes could be a flight risk, or potentially harmful to the child's well-being.
Before being arrested, Huhn and Detective David Phillips collected a saliva sample from Fuentes, according to a probable cause statement, via the Dispatch.
After Fuentes' Wednesday arraignment, Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost issued a single-sentence statement regarding the ordeal: "We rejoice anytime a child rapist is taken off the streets."
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