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Friday, September 3, 1999 Published at 15:58 GMT 16:58 UK


Boy, 14, faces pregnancy quiz

The young father-to-be will be interviewed soon

Police will soon interview the 14-year-old Sheffield schoolboy alleged to have got his 12-year-old girlfriend pregnant.

The boy, who says he will make a good father, will be interviewed after he has met a social worker.

Teen pregnancy
South Yorkshire police have launched an investigation into the pregnancy, because a girl of 12 cannot legally give her consent to sex and is technically a rape victim.

Jim Greensmith of South Yorkshire Police: "We have to pursue what the law says"
"We have spoken to the 12-year-old and she has named a 14-year-old boy as the father. She does not want to co-operate with police enquiries," a police spokeswoman said.

"We are working with social services on this one. A meeting will be held with the boy's social worker sometime soon, and he will be interviewed by police after that meeting."

Baby 'unplanned'

The 14-year-old, who claims he lost his virginity at the age of nine, admitted the pregnancy was a mistake, but vowed to stand by his three-month pregnant girlfriend.

The BBC's Craig Swan on the phenomenon of the teenage fathers
"It's all a bit frightening, but now it's happened I'm getting used to the idea," he said.

"The baby wasn't really planned, but I'm going to stick with my girlfriend and bring up the baby together.

"I really like children and I think I will make a good dad."

He said he started seeing his girlfriend earlier this year but had not slept with her for three months.

"At first we used condoms but we stopped after a while because I don't like them. We knew she could get pregnant if we didn't, but we just carried on."

Legal Affairs Correspondent Joshua Rozenberg: "This case presents legal and social problems"
Sporting a baseball cap and earring, the youngster claimed he had slept with 10 other girls but said this was his first long-term relationship.

"We get on really well and she's a good laugh. I think we will stay together.

"She has been saying she wanted a baby for a while but I didn't think too much about it."

[ image: His 12-year-old girlfriend also wants to be a mother]
His 12-year-old girlfriend also wants to be a mother
The boy said he had been in trouble at school and had been cautioned twice by police for theft.

"I have been in trouble a few times but I'm not a criminal or anything like that. I don't know if the police will do anything about this latest thing."

The girl has also said she is "not ashamed" of being pregnant, and wants to keep the baby even though she is frightened of giving birth.

"It's your baby, you can't get rid of it like that," she said.

Second investigation

Last week, a 12-year-old girl in neighbouring Rotherham gave birth to a baby boy. Her mother's 26-year-old former boyfriend is alleged to be the father - he has denied the claims.

"She's been interviewed, and members of her family have also been spoken to. We'll interview the alleged father in due course," the police spokeswoman said.

Meanwhile, a secondary school in Tyne and Wear plans to issue condoms and contraceptive pills from a playground health clinic as part of the drive to reduce teenage pregnancies.

It is believed to be a first for Britain. The decision was taken after pupils at Hookergate Comprehensive School were asked what health advice they needed - they asked for sex advice.

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30 Aug 99 | UK
Girl, 12, faces quiz over baby's father

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