Fifteen-year-old girl legally married man ten years her senior after she fell pregnant

Mail Online | 3/21/2019 | Unity Blott For Mailonline;Harriet Johnston For Mailonline
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A woman has revealed how she was married off to her 24-year-old boyfriend when she got pregnant at 15, so that he could avoid charges of statutory rape.

Keri, now 21, from South Carolina, was 'forced' to marry Paul with her father's consent in accordance with the law in the southeastern state.

BBC - Three - Documentary - America - Child

She appears in the upcoming BBC Three documentary America's Child Brides, which explores 'legal loopholes' in 17 states in which there is no lower age limit for marriage.

Speaking to journalist Ellie Flynn, Keri, whose surname has not been revealed, explains that she and Paul found out he was being investigated by the police after she found out she was expecting.

Father - Paul - Cousin - Birthday - House

She was living with her father, and met Paul through her cousin while celebrating her 15th birthday at a house party.

They had a one night stand and she fell pregnant.

'It - Birthday - Weekend - Drinking

'It was basically my birthday weekend, hanging out and drinking. And then I got pregnant,' she reveals.

The legal age of consent in South Carolina is 16, although teenagers as young as 14 are able to consent to sex with a partner as long as they are 18 or younger.

Keri - Paul - Police - Possibility - Bringing

When Keri and Paul discovered police were investigating him with the possibility of bringing charges for statutory rape, he decided to explore what's often referred to as the 'marry your rapist' loophole.

He discovered that marrying Keri 'might make the investigation go away', so he decided to pop the question.

Keri - Dad - Drunk - Paul - Case

Keri wasn't keen to get married, but said that her dad was 'a drunk' and that Paul bought him a case of beer in order to convince him to give his permission.

She explains: 'If my dad had wanted to, he could have pressed charges. Paul talked my dad into signing the marriage license for us.'

Keri

Keri was left...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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