A convicted child rapist in Michigan has been granted joint custody of an 8-year-old boy who is the product of a rape he is believed to have committed. The mother of the child was 12 years old at the time of the sex assault.
The Detroit News reports that Sanilac County Circuit judge has awarded Christopher Mirasolo, 27, joint custody of the son born to a girl he raped when she was 12 years old.
The victim’s attorney Rebecca Kiessling told the newspaper that Mirasolo was 18 when he kidnapped, raped, and threatened to kill the 12-year-old girl, holding her and her sister captive in a vacant home in Detroit for two days.
Under a plea agreement, Mirasolo pleaded guilty only to attempted third-degree criminal sexual conduct. He was sentenced to one year in jail, and was released about halfway through his sentence in order to care for his sick mother.
“'[The victim] and her family was told first-time sex offenders weren’t sent to prison because people come out worse after they go there,” said Kiessling.
The victim has not been identified as she is a victim of sexual assault. She told the Detroit News that she believes she was targeted because she received government subsidies. As part of the investigation into the government support for her child, the father was identified by a DNA test and notified of his paternity.
According to the Detroit News report, he was also given his victim’s address without her knowledge or consent.
“I think this is all crazy,” she told the newspaper.
“They (officials) never explained anything to me. I was receiving about $260 a month in food stamps for me and my son and health insurance for him. I guess they were trying to see how to get some of the money back.”
The father and sex offender did not take any action himself to seek custody of the child, and may not choose to be part of the boy’s life.
“Chris was notified of the paternity matter and an order of filiation was issued last month by the court saying he had joint legal custody and reasonable visitation privileges,” his attorney said.
“He never initiated this. It was something routinely done by the prosecutor’s office when a party makes application for state assistance … I don’t know what his plans or intentions might be regarding any future relationship with the child.”
Kiessling reportedly filed an objection to the judge’s order and is seeking protection for her client and the child via the Rape Survivor Child Custody Act.
“This is insane. Nothing has been right about this since it was originally investigated,” the attorney said,
“He was never properly charged and should still be sitting behind bars somewhere, but the system is victimizing my client, who was a child herself when this all happened.”