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18-Year-Old High School Senior Charged With Sexual Battery For Her Same-Sex Relationship With A 15-Year-Old Freshman

by Jean Ann Esselink on May 20, 2013

in Discrimination,Jean Ann Esselink,Legal Issues

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“Our daughter will NOT be gay!” According to the father of Kaitlyn Hunt, that’s what the parents of Kate’s girlfriend told teachers at Sebastian River High School, after they had the 18-year-old Kate arrested for “sexual battery on a person 12-16 years old,” for no other reason that Kate and their daughter fell in love.

Last year, when Kate was 17, and a senior at Sebastian River High School in Florida, she entered into a consensual relationship with a freshman, 3 years younger than herself. In her open letter about the incident, Kate’s mother says while the girls were dating, she never had an inkling that the girl’s parents were opposed to their daughters’ relationship. She said they never approached her, or Kate’s father, or the girls’ school about any concerns. It came as a complete shock when Kate turned 18, and out of the blue, the younger girl’s parents had Kate arrested.

Police came to the Hunt home and handcuffed Kate, refusing at first to give her parents any information about why, because Kate, at 18, is legally an adult. Kate was charged with a felony, which could cost her up to 15 years in prison. She was arraigned before a judge who said she could return to school, as long as she had no contact with her girlfriend. But that wasn’t good enough for the girl’s parents.

The parents of Kate’s girlfriend appealed to the school board, citing Kate’s pending sexual battery on a minor charge, and asked that she be expelled. By all accounts, Kate was a model student, a varsity athlete, voted “most school spirited” and never in any trouble with either the law or the school. Kate’s girlfriend continues to tell anyone who will listen that the relationship was consensual and that she still loves Kate and does not want her prosecuted. But the school expelled Kate anyway.

The assistant state attorney, Brian Workman, has offered Kate a plea bargain. If she pleads guilty to child abuse, he has offered a sentence of 2 years house arrest, followed by a year on probation. Kate also faces the possibility of being put on the sexual offenders list at the judge’s discretion. Workman has given Kate until May 25, to accept his offer. If she turns it down, she will go to trial on the original sexual battery charge in June.

Kate’s parents are certain anti-gay animus has motivated the parents of Kate’s girlfriend. The Hunt family is trying to enlist the help of the public to shine a light on the injustice of the situation. If you would like to add your voice, you can sign the Change.org petition, or visit her Free Kate Facebook page and voice your support.

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{ 4 comments }

MeSoHornish May 20, 2013 at 3:21 pm

While the issue here is is law the greater issue is American inability to deal with sexuality. In general, Americans have a very immature appreciation of sex.

MeSoHornish May 20, 2013 at 3:26 pm

On the plus side for Kaitlyn, felony charges in Florida often lead to a highly successful political career.

realdealameal May 20, 2013 at 10:58 pm

Cut the civil rights crap. If this was done by an 18 year old man, he would be charged with statutory rape and given 10-15 years. This has nothing to do with sexual orientation or love (pfff). This has to do with the younger being influenced by the older; which is why there are laws to protect minors. If the 18 year old was smart, she would've waited until the younger turned 18. However, she wasn't smart. The perp broke the law and now she has to pay the consequence like any Tom, Dick, or Harry. She deserves no special treatment. She deserves to be treated like any guy would be treated — real equality. Also, the decision of the minors' parents to take action is their prerogative. It is their business to do things when and how they want. Unless the daughter filed for emancipation, it is the parents decision that goes; not anyone else but the parents. Whether people think that this is not right really doesn't matter.

reno357 May 21, 2013 at 6:10 pm

I'm not a pro-LGBT'er but even I can see that the motives of the parents of the 15 year old, to press charges against the 18 year old, was done out of hate and spite. The 18 year old is no criminal anymore than Billy Graham is. And this is the sole reason why I signed the petition at change.org.

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