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Man convicted of raping, impregnating 12-year-old girl

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JEFFERSON PARISH, LA (WVUE) -

A Jefferson Parish man has been convicted of raping and impregnating a teenage girl.

A jury found Jose Ivan Moreno Cervantes, 36 of Denham Springs, guilty of raping and impregnating a 12-year-old girl in West Jefferson. 

The jury rejected Cervantes assertion that the 12-year-old used his discarded condom to cause the pregnancy.

Cervantes was convicted of first-degree rape of a juvenile under the age 13, a crime that carries a mandatory life sentence in prison, according to the Jefferson Parish district attorney.

According to the report, Cervantes raped the girl three times, twice in Westwego and once in his car in Marrero.

School officials suspected in late August 2015 that the child was pregnant, a suspicion the mother initially rejected.

According to the report, the same day a pediatrician confirmed that the victim was 8 ½ months pregnant.

The victim  told authorities that she had been raped by Cervantes, who by this point had vanished from Jefferson Parish, according to the district attorney.

The victim was 12-years-old when she gave birth in September 2015.

Police obtained a warrant for Cervantes’ arrest, and a U.S. Marshals Service fugitive task force apprehended him in July 2016, when the newborn was nine months old, according to evidence presented during the trial, according to the report. 

DNA testing established that Cervantes is the father. Prior to trial, the victim and her mother signed an affidavit at the behest of Cervantes’ family, asserting that the child obtained one of his used condoms and impregnated herself, the district attorney said.

She later refuted the assertions spelled out in the affidavit, saying she signed it in hopes her child would have a father.

The jury deliberated less than a half-hour in convicting Cervantes. Judge John Molaison of the 24th Judicial District Court is scheduled to sentence Cervantes on Monday. 

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