A 21-year-old Inver Grove Heights man has been charged with impregnating a 13-year-old girl.
Nicholas William Marks is charged with third-degree criminal sexual conduct, a felony with a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and a $30,000 fine.
According to the criminal complaint, an Inver Grove Heights police officer received a report in early March 2011 that the victim—who was 13 at the time—was pregnant and that her baby was due in May 2011.
The victim’s mother told police that her daughter and Marks had sex on “multiple occasions,” according to the complaint. The girl’s mother said she had spoken to Marks about the pregnancy, and Marks told her that he didn’t want his name on the birth certificate because he didn’t want to get in trouble.
At the time, Marks was living with his grandmother in Inver Grove Heights, and the sexual contact occurred at Marks’ home, according to the complaint.
The victim told investigators that she met Marks in July 2010 through a friend on Facebook. She said she and Marks had sex twice at his home.
The victim said she initially told Marks she was 16, but a friend told Marks her real age, and he knew how old she was the second time they had sex.
Investigators learned on March 18, 2011, that the victim had given birth to her child, who was born extremely premature and was in the neonatal intensive care unit. Because of the baby’s poor health, investigators were unable to get a DNA sample.
In May 2011, an investigator learned that the baby had died.
Authorities obtained a DNA sample from the victim, and tried to find Marks throughout the Summer and Fall of 2011 to get a DNA sample from him, but were unsuccessful.
Police tracked down Marks last January and obtained a search warrant for his DNA—a sample which was sent to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, along with a blood sample from the baby and the victim’s DNA.
During a subsequent telephone conversation with an investigator, Marks did not admit having sex with the victim, but asked what would happen if the testing showed that he was the father of the baby, according to the complaint.
He later admitted to police that the victim told him her real age, but he claimed that any sex happened before he found out how old she was, the complaint says.
Paternity testing showed that it is approximately 31.4 million times more likely that Marks was the father of the victim’s baby than any other man.
Marks is scheduled to make a first appearance on the charge Oct. 15 in Dakota County District Court in Hastings.